Our solar system is squashed, proves findings by Voyager 2December 11th, 2007 - 3:56 pm ICT by admin
Washington, Dec 11 (ANI): Voyager 2 has proved that our solar system is squashed or dented, with information from a vast region at the end of our solar system.
The new theory about the solar system emerged after Voyager 2 had entered a region known as the heliosheath boundary (also known as solar wind termination shock), a region where the solar wind interacts with the surrounding interstellar medium.
This boundary is formed when the flow of particles constantly streaming out from the sun-the solar wind-slams into the surrounding thin gas that fills the space between stars.
The Plasma Science instrument aboard the Voyager 2 detected the boundary, as well as making detailed measurements of the solar wind’s temperature, speed and density as the spacecraft crossed through it.
The solar wind is a thin gas of electrically charged particles (plasma) blown into space by the sun. The solar wind blows in all directions, carving a bubble into interstellar space that extends past the orbit of Pluto. This bubble is called the heliosphere.
Now, new findings from Voyager 2 have indicated that the bubble carved into interstellar space by the solar wind is not perfectly round. Where Voyager 2 made its crossing, the bubble is pushed in closer to the sun by the local interstellar magnetic field.
This magnetic field is unexpectedly strong and squashes the bubble of outflowing gas from the sun, distorting it from the uniform spherical shape that space physicists had expected to find.
Another finding from the MIT plasma instrument aboard the Voyager 2 is that just outside the boundary zone, the temperature, although hotter than inside, is ten times cooler than expected.
After scrambling for an answer to the unanticipated chilling effect, theorists said that the unexpected coolness, is caused by energy going into particles that are hotter than those that can be measured by the plasma instrument.
“Voyager 2 continues its journey of discovery, crossing the termination shock multiple times as it entered the outermost layer of the giant heliospheric bubble surrounding the Sun and joined Voyager 1 in the last leg of the race to interstellar space.” said Voyager Project Scientist Dr. Edward Stone of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California. (ANI)
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Tags: boundary zone, chilling effect, closer to the sun, coolness, heliosphere, interstellar medium, interstellar space, journey of discovery, magnetic field, plasma science, science instrument, solar system, solar wind blows, space between stars, space physicists, spherical shape, termination shock, theorists, thin gas, voyager 2