Still Feeling Small…

So, after my last post I got to wondering (as you do) where exactly is Voyager 1 these days other than ‘out there somewhere’.

Thanks to this web site http://heavens-above.com I found an answer (of sorts) although it still leaves me with a sort of ‘out there somewhere’ feeling.

The web site says Voyager 1 (V1 in the above pic) is 112.782 ‘Astronomical Units’ away. An AU is the average distance between the Earth and the Sun, that old 93 million miles thing, and yes, I had to look it up, I’m not that smart! So a quick bit of math puts V1 at around ten and a half billion (US billion) miles away from earth. Like I said, ‘out there somewhere’!

This NASA page says that our nearest star (Proxima Centauri in the Alpha Centauri system) is 271 THOUSAND AU’s away. That’s two thousand, four hundred (ish) times further away than Voyager 1 is right now and Voyager 1 has been going for around 33 years since it was launched in 1977.

That means (assuming it’s even going in THAT direction!) that it would reach Proxima Centauri in around 79, 350 years or so, so don’t wait up for it to phone home saying that it’s got there!

What this really means in astronomical terms is that, even after 33 years, Voyager 1 has barely got out of the front yard on its trip into the big wide universe. See, I told you we were small!

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One Response to “Still Feeling Small…”

  1. I knew this stuff would come in handy « Branch on Maybe Says:

    […] knew this stuff would come in handy By ltlfrari Some time ago I posted my musings here about where Voyager 1 was in it’s journey into space (short answer, not very far in galactic […]

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