NASA Voyager 1 became the first man-made object to enter interstellar space, meaning it traveled outside the confines of our own heliosphere. Now the data has revealed what the interspace actually looks like.
Through NASA, Voyager 1 returned interstellar sounds in November 2012, three months after its first visit to interstellar space. Over time, Voyager 1 data continued to show new waves or whistles from interstellar space.
- “The interstellar medium seemed to be getting thicker and faster,” according to NASA.
The data-related findings were recently published in a new study. And NASA recently released an actual recording of the sounds of interstellar space.
You will notice that the sounds come in waves. It’s not a strange silence as one might expect.
According to NASA, interstellar space is full of waves caused by “the rotation of our galaxy, as space rubs against itself and ripples tens of light years”. And there are also radiation waves from “supernova explosions, stretching billions of miles from ridge to ridge.”
“The smallest ripples usually come from our own sun, as solar flares send shock waves through space that permeate the wall of our heliosphere,” according to NASA.
“We are detecting the faint, persistent hum of interstellar gas,” said Stella Koch Ocker, a doctoral student at Cornell University, according to CNET. “It is very weak and monotonous because it is in a narrow frequency bandwidth.”
Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 were both launched in August and September 1977. Both spacecraft have moved away from Earth since then. Voyager 2 left our solar system around 2018, traveling in a different direction than Voyager 1.