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Voyager Spacecraft: What It Teaches The Universe About Mankind

300px Ann Druyan 1 Voyager Spacecraft: What It Teaches The Universe About Mankind

English: Ann Druyan (born June 13, 1949) is an American author and media producer known for her involvement in many projects aiming to popularize and explain science. She is probably best-known as the last wife of Carl Sagan, and co-author of the Cosmos series and book, along with Sagan and Steven Soter (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By Aglaia Staff

The unmanned, car-sized craft, which was built in the 1970s, has now officially burst out of the protective magnetic bubble that forms around the sun.

It will give scientists the first true glimpse of what lies beyond our own solar system as on board instruments are exposed to the full barrage of particles and cosmic radiation that lie beyond the sun’s heliosphere.

But while it will provide us Earthlings with a new perspective on our galaxy, the Voyager 1 spacecraft also has the potential to teach other intelligent life about our own lives.

On board the spacecraft is a 12-inch gold-plated copper disk, engraved with drawings on how to play it.

Encoded on the disk in a phonographic record format are sounds and images from Earth.

So what will Voyager reveal to the universe about mankind:

 

Human technology

Voyager 1 and its twin Voyager 2 were launched in the late 1970s. The technology they carry is more than 36 years old.

In fact, the entire computing power that has navigated Voyager 1 over its 11.6 billion mile journey from Earth can now be found inside an iPhone.

For any space-faring alien life that stumble across the spacecraft, this may paint a fairly primitive picture of life on Earth.

However, they would also be able to calculate from the Voyager’s speed and trajectory, exactly how long it has been travelling for, and so will perhaps realise we have advanced.

 

The first human contact

Among the many images and sounds carried on the golden disks on Voyager 1 and 2 is a recording of the brain waves of a human being.

The electrical activity produced by the brain of Ann Druyan, an author and television producer, has been stored on the disks in a minute long soundtrack that consists of a string of crackles and pops.

Miss Druyan was the creative director of the Voyager Interstellar Message Project, which she was working on with Dr Carl Sagan, the American astronomer who led the project.

While putting together the disks, the pair fell in love and some of the electrical activity is of her thinking about the moment the pair decided to marry.

She said she wanted the record to carry a message of her feelings of having fallen in love.

She also read from a script that recited philosophical ideas and discussed key moments in history.

She said: “We created a message that could potentially last for a thousand million years.

“The most audacious and ambitious attempt ever made at being remembered, and show who we really are, is on that space craft, bound for a future that we can only dream about.

“People often ask me, ‘What will the extra terrestrials, should they exist, think of us if they encounter the record?’

“They will encounter that space craft first and that will tell them so much about us.”

 

Namaste! Sat Sri Akal! Ni hao! Bonjour! Merhaba! Greetings from around the world

The disks also include greetings and messages in 55 languages.

Among them are a message in Welsh and six now extinct tongues.

The Welsh message translates to say: “Good health to you now and forever.”

Sounds of human life

Among the audio recordings are the sounds of footsteps across a polished floor, a human heartbeat and someone laughing. There is also the sound of a couple kissing and a mother with her child.

300px Voyager Program   spacecraft diagram Voyager Spacecraft: What It Teaches The Universe About Mankind

Visit aglaia.co.in English: Diagram of the Voyager spacecrafts with labels pointing to the important instruments and systems. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The recordings are designed to give an insight into some of the most natural sounds produced by humans during our lives.

Other sounds on board include the sound of thunder, volcanoes erupting, an earthquake, wind, rain and waves breaking on a beach.

Animals sounds of a chimpanzee, a hyena, birds, crickets, frogs and elephants are also included.

Other human activities such as a horse pulling a cart, a blacksmith at work, sawing and someone herding sheep are also included.

To give an idea of what humans are capable of, morse code, the sound of a tractor, a train, bus, boats and car, along with an F-111 aircraft flying by and a Saturn 5 rocket taking off, are all included.

More primal sounds from human history are also included, such as a fire and the first tools being used.

What little green men might make of this collage of sounds from Earth is hard to say.

Music From Earth

A range of music was chosen by nations from around the world and was included on the Voyager record.

The German’s chose a four minute clip from Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No 2 in F while Australia included some Aborigine songs including one called Morning Star.

There are also some Peruvian panpipe music and traditional music from Georgia and new Guinea.

 

 

The book of life

Among the pictures electronically encoded onto the disk are a couple that reveal the structure of DNA – the molecule found in every living cell that encodes life.

Whether alien life would have similar DNA or be based on molecules that are somewhat different is still a matter that is greatly debated.

These images, however, will reveal the molecular basis for life here on Earth.

Other images show cells and cell division while aliens would also be given a lesson in human anatomy and reproduction from some of the other images carried.

 

We are here

Another image on the disk is map showing the location of our solar system. There are also images of the planets taken by Nasa spacecraft.

There are some images of the Earth too, including a close-up of the River Nile as it winds its way through Egypt.

There are several pictures of landscapes on Earth including Heron Island on the Great Barrier Reef along with pictures of forest scenes, sand dunes, fallen leaves and snowflakes.

Pictures of animals such as dolphins, fish, tree toads and eagles are included, while images of humans including Jane Goodall with some chimps also feature.

Snapshots of everyday lives make up the bulk of the images, including an elderly man, a mountain climber, a gymnast and a Chinese dinner party.

Take me to your leader

Perhaps one of the most helpful images to be included for any alien life forms wanting to get in touch with some Earthlings is a series of images of the UN building in New York at night and during the day.

Great landmarks such as the Great Wall of China, famous Indian buildings, the Golden Gate Bridge and the Sydney Opera House are also included.

Let’s hope that whatever finds the disks are not hostile, otherwise these may become the first targets they attack. Interestingly the White House was not one of the images included.

 Voyager Spacecraft: What It Teaches The Universe About Mankind
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Private Spacecraft To Rendezvous With Space Station

300px Space Shuttle Atlantis launches from KSC on STS 132 side view Private Spacecraft To Rendezvous With Space Station

Visit aglaia.co.in English: An exhaust plume surrounds the mobile launcher platform on Launch Pad 39A , Kennedy Space Center, Fla., as space shuttle Atlantis lifts off on the STS-132 mission on May 14. STS-132 is the 132nd shuttle flight, the 32nd for Atlantis and the 34th shuttle mission dedicated to International Space Station assembly and maintenance. (NASA) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By Suman Relan

NASA said it has given the go ahead for the first private spacecraft to proceed toward a rendezvous with the International Space Station on Friday.

The unmanned SpaceX Dragon that launched Tuesday from Cape Canaveral, Florida, has successfully completed all tests so far in preparation for a docking, the space agency said.

Tuesday’s launch marked the culmination of six years of preparation to bring commercial flights to the space station after the retirement of NASA’s space shuttle fleet last year. It’s backed by entrepreneur Elon Musk, the founder of PayPal.

Cremated human remains were placed in the second stage of the Falcon and will orbit the Earth. Celestis Inc. charges families $2,995 to launch 1 gram of remains in this type of memorial spaceflight.

 

 Private Spacecraft To Rendezvous With Space Station
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Kepler Telescope Studies Superflares

300px Kepler Space Telescope Kepler Telescope Studies Superflares

Visit aglaia.co.in Kepler Space Telescope (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By Neelam Kumar

Nasa’s Kepler space telescope has provided fresh insight on the colossal explosions that can afflict some stars.

These enormous releases of magnetic energy – known as superflares – could damage the atmosphere of a nearby orbiting planet, putting at risk any lifeforms that might reside there. The US space agency telescope is currently looking at 100,000 stars in a patch of sky about 600 to 3,000 light-years from Earth.

 Kepler Telescope Studies Superflares
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Nasa to put man on asteroid by 2020s

By Sunil Kumar

Nasa is reportedly training a team of astronauts for a mission to land on an asteroid by the end of the next decade. The US space agency is training the astronauts to land on an asteroid to explore its surface and search for minerals.

300px Artist Concept   Astronaut Performs Tethering Maneuvers at Asteroid Nasa to put man on asteroid by 2020s

In this artist's concept, an astronaut performs a tethering maneuver at an asteroid. The Space Exploration Vehicle (SEV) is close by, with the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) docked to a habitat in the background. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 Nasa to put man on asteroid by 2020s
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Liberty Rocket Targets 2015 Debut

6032195961 f622d70f47 m Liberty Rocket Targets 2015 Debut

Visit aglaia.co.in (New York 14) - #138 (Photo credit: Patrick DB)

By Sunil Kumar

 

The industrial team that aims to make an astronaut launcher by marrying parts of the US space shuttle and Europe‘s Ariane rocket says it now has a complete system.

To be known as Liberty, the launcher would be sold to Nasa to take its crews to the International Space Station (ISS).

According to the BBC, Utah-based Alliant Techsystems (ATK), whose side boosters got the shuttle off the pad, is leading the project.

The company expects Liberty to launch on its first manned mission in 2015.

 Liberty Rocket Targets 2015 Debut
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Invisible Planet Found By Old Technique

By Sunil Kumar

Over 150 years ago, before Neptune was ever sighted in the night sky, French mathematician Urbain Le Verrier predicted the planet’s existence based on small deviations in the motion of Uranus.

Using a laborious computational method to assess the effects of gravity, known as gravitational perturbation theory, lead author Le Verrier argued in favour of Neptune’s existence and predicted the position of this hidden world to within an arc degree, as later detected directly by Johann Galle of the Berlin Observatory. ”Today’s telescopes are detecting planets around distant stars, and NASA’s Kepler Telescope, launched in 2009, is a champion among them,” said Nesvorny.

It finds planets by continuously monitoring the brightness of more than 150,000 stars, searching for brief periods of time, known as transits, when a star appears fainter because it is obscured by a planet passing in the foreground.

Uranus Orbit Invisible Planet Found By Old Technique

Uranus revolves around the Sun once every 84 Earth years. Its average distance from the Sun is roughly 3 billion km (about 20 AU). http://weelookang.blogspot.com/2011/06/ejs-open-source-kepler-3rd-law-system.html (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

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Discovery Flies Final Mission

space shuttle discovery 300x200 Discovery Flies Final Mission

The Space Shuttle - Visit aglaia.co.in and Aglaia Interactive

By Sunil Kumar

These are the stories of the voyages of the space-shuttle Discovery, the millions of miles and the missions, to explore the world around earth.

The space shuttle Discovery flew its final mission hitched atop a 747 carrier jet as it departed the Kennedy Space Center, Tuesday, April 17, 2012, in Cape Canaveral, Fla. It was transported to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington.

The plane soared 1,500 feet over America’s capital, gliding over the Potomac River, Reagan Airport and the National Mall before touching down at Dulles Airport.

With 39 trips into space, NASA’s oldest surviving shuttle now will settle into its retirement home at the Smithsonian institution’s facility at Dulles International Airport, just outside Washington, D.C. Space shuttle Enterprise will head to New York City.

Endeavour will go to Los Angeles while Atlantis will stay at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

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