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Solar System Is "Bullet Shaped"
National Geographic ^ | 5/10/07 | Brian Handwerk

Posted on 05/11/2007 4:17:06 PM PDT by LibWhacker

Our solar system flies through space in the shape of a speeding bullet, according to data from NASA's two Voyager spacecraft.

The sun and its planets are known to streak through the void of space at approximately 62,000 miles (100,000 kilometers) an hour.

The system travels within a bubble of solar wind—made of charged particles from the sun—called the heliosphere.

The edge of this bubble collides with the Milky Way galaxy's magnetic field at a distance some 200 times farther from the sun than Earth is.

A research team led by Merav Opher at Virginia's George Mason University found that, just outside the solar system, this interstellar magnetic field is inclined at a 60-degree angle relative to the plane of the Milky Way.

The solar system takes on its streamlined shape as it strikes the magnetic field at this angle, Opher explained.

"The shape of the solar system, this bullet, is really shaped by what lies ahead of us—the interstellar magnetic field," Opher said.

"The [prevailing] idea is that the environment just outside our solar system is patchy and turbulent," she added.

"There are lots of stars exploding and dying outside our solar system."

Opher and colleagues made the find using radio data from the veteran Voyager spacecraft. Though they have plied the skies since the 1970s, the craft only recently reached the solar system's edge.

Opher's team reports its findings in tomorrow's issue of the journal Science.

The study has added new wrinkles to evolving views of the interstellar magnetic field, said Randy Jokipii, an astrophysicist at the University of Arizona.

"[The study] does indeed give us a magnetic field which is quite a bit different than that obtained by previous measurements," Jokipii said.

"In the last few years we've seen almost an explosion in our understanding of what I'd call the … local interstellar medium and its interaction with the heliosphere," added Jokipii, who provided a perspective article to the Science research.


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: bullet; shaped; solar; system

1 posted on 05/11/2007 4:17:09 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: LibWhacker
Solar System Is "Bullet Shaped"

Libs demand thougher laws against Solar System.

2 posted on 05/11/2007 4:18:56 PM PDT by SolidWood (Islam is an insanity cult that makes everyone act Arab)
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To: LibWhacker

So now we are a speeding bullet, with no specific destination?


3 posted on 05/11/2007 4:20:07 PM PDT by rocksblues (Do unto others as they do unto you!)
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To: rocksblues

Yeah....I was wondering where we were headed....


4 posted on 05/11/2007 4:21:34 PM PDT by goodnesswins (We need to cure Academentia)
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To: goodnesswins

Mostly we’re orbitting the center of the Milky Way galaxy.


5 posted on 05/11/2007 4:23:03 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
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To: LibWhacker

Are we SWC, FMJ or JHP?


6 posted on 05/11/2007 4:24:47 PM PDT by P8riot (I carry a gun because I can't carry a cop.)
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To: goodnesswins

I’m driving and I’m NOT stopping for directions!!!


7 posted on 05/11/2007 4:25:32 PM PDT by GRRRRR ( What's Next? - Lead, Crash or Get Out of The WAY!~)
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To: LibWhacker
Just remember that you're standing on a planet that's evolving
And revolving at nine hundred miles an hour,
That's orbiting at nineteen miles a second, so it's reckoned,
A sun that is the source of all our power.
The sun and you and me and all the stars that we can see
Are moving at a million miles a day
In an outer spiral arm, at forty thousand miles an hour,
Of the galaxy we call the 'Milky Way'.
Our galaxy itself contains a hundred billion stars.
It's a hundred thousand light years side to side.
It bulges in the middle, sixteen thousand light years thick,
But out by us, it's just three thousand light years wide.
We're thirty thousand light years from galactic central point.
We go 'round every two hundred million years,
And our galaxy is only one of millions of billions
In this amazing and expanding universe.

The universe itself keeps on expanding and expanding
In all of the directions it can whizz
As fast as it can go, at the speed of light, you know,
Twelve million miles a minute, and that's the fastest speed there is.
So remember, when you're feeling very small and insecure,
How amazingly unlikely is your birth,
And pray that there's intelligent life somewhere up in space,
'Cause there's bugger all down here on Earth.
8 posted on 05/11/2007 4:25:48 PM PDT by Bubba Ho-Tep
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To: Spktyr

Ah....thank you.....You (I) learn something new every day.....!!! Always learning....that’s one reason I love FR!


9 posted on 05/11/2007 4:25:57 PM PDT by goodnesswins (We need to cure Academentia)
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To: GRRRRR

Figures.


10 posted on 05/11/2007 4:27:13 PM PDT by goodnesswins (We need to cure Academentia)
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To: LibWhacker
"The [prevailing] idea is that the environment just outside our solar system is patchy and turbulent," she added. "There are lots of stars exploding and dying outside our solar system."

Tough neighborhood.

11 posted on 05/11/2007 4:27:20 PM PDT by colorado tanker
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To: P8riot

Looking at the pictures, looks like a RNL shockwave pattern.


12 posted on 05/11/2007 4:27:42 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
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To: LibWhacker

Amazing those two ancient probes are still returning valuable data.


13 posted on 05/11/2007 4:27:59 PM PDT by saganite (Billions and billions and billions----and that's just the NASA budget!)
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To: LibWhacker
>>>The system travels within a bubble of solar wind—made of charged particles from the sun—called the heliosphere. <<<

This is the same "solar wind" of cosmic particles from the nun that has been shown to effect cloud cover on earth" and is suspected by many scientists as a major factor in Global Warming, and Cooling!

Al Gore and his friends have yet to acknowledge these recent findings.

Hey Al, it's the solar physics stupid!

14 posted on 05/11/2007 4:28:31 PM PDT by HardStarboard (Take No Prisoners - We're Out of Qurans)
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To: rocksblues
Second star to the right and straight on 'til morning.

Garde la Foi, mes amis! Nous nous sommes les sauveurs de la République! Maintenant et Toujours!
(Keep the Faith, my friends! We are the saviors of the Republic! Now and Forever!)

LonePalm, le Républicain du verre cassé (The Broken Glass Republican)

15 posted on 05/11/2007 4:34:28 PM PDT by LonePalm (Commander and Chef)
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To: LibWhacker
The sun and its planets are known to streak through the void of space at approximately 62,000 miles (100,000 kilometers) an hour.

Relative to what? It is pointless to talk about speed (or velocity) unless you specify your frame of reference.

16 posted on 05/11/2007 4:42:23 PM PDT by Logophile
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To: Logophile

Relative to the galactic center.


17 posted on 05/11/2007 4:44:16 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
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To: LibWhacker

What is the caliber, Kenneth?


18 posted on 05/11/2007 4:44:32 PM PDT by Hebrews 11:6 (Do you REALLY believe that (1) God is, and (2) God is good?)
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To: GRRRRR

But I gutta’ go NOW !!!


19 posted on 05/11/2007 4:45:52 PM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true.)
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To: Bubba Ho-Tep

I have a bookmark for that flash animation at work. (One of) the most fun flash animations I’ve seen. Bravo.


20 posted on 05/11/2007 5:00:09 PM PDT by samson1097
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To: Hebrews 11:6
5 x 1016
21 posted on 05/11/2007 5:01:57 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: Spktyr

Correct!


22 posted on 05/11/2007 5:03:18 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: saganite

Yup, you can say that again! Nuclear power is amazing. It’s just as amazing to me that we can pick up the signal. IIRC, it’s as weak as the flame of a single candle and 200 billion miles away. Can that possibly be right???


23 posted on 05/11/2007 5:07:12 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: HardStarboard
This is the same "solar wind" of cosmic particles from the nun that has been shown to effect cloud cover on earth"

Dang! That is some nun. Don't mess with that sister, sister! (or brother)

24 posted on 05/11/2007 5:20:26 PM PDT by Tanniker Smith (I didn't know she was a Liberal when I married her.)
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To: knarf

You should have thought about going to the bathroom BEFORE the big bang!!!

Sheesh, KIDS!!!!


25 posted on 05/11/2007 5:41:29 PM PDT by GRRRRR ( What's Next? - Lead, Crash or Get Out of The WAY!~)
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To: LibWhacker

26 posted on 05/11/2007 5:51:00 PM PDT by Doohickey (Giuliani: Brokeback Republican)
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To: Bubba Ho-Tep

http://dingo.care2.com/cards/flash/5409/galaxy.swf

Here is the song set to video. Enjoy.


27 posted on 05/11/2007 6:14:58 PM PDT by Sundog (envision whirled peas.)
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To: SolidWood

A liberal would prefer “titty shaped.”


28 posted on 05/11/2007 7:08:48 PM PDT by gcruse
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To: Bubba Ho-Tep
Well if you were back in Ancient Egypt when they were building the pyramids and got on a spaceship that traveled the speed of light, you'd only be about 1/20th across the Milky Way galaxy by now!

And as pointed out, the Milky Way galaxy (with its hundred billion stars) is just an average galaxy in a known universe that has trillions and trillions of galaxies.

If I was given the ability to live forever and travel the speed of light in a gigantic spaceship that held every single bottle of wine ever made and every single book ever written, by the time I got done consuming all the wine and reading every book, I'd only be a tiny fraction of the way across the universe and I'd start to get very bored (not to mention having a huge hangover after drinking every drop of wine ever produced).

Imagine having the patience to count every grain of sand on earth and count every single tree and then count each leaf on each tree and catalog it all in an Excel Spreadsheet. In fact, what if you were directed to catalog every single item on planet earth right down to the atomic level. Yes, that would take a very long time. But it would only be an eyeblink in eternity.

They say that if you put a monkey on a typewriter and give him eternity to type at random, eventually that monkey would inadvertently strike the proper combination of keys to re-produce Shakespeare's "Hamlet." Let's say that the monkey finally does this 82 quintillion centuries from now. Now you put the same monkey in front of a piano and have him strike the keys at random until one of Beethoven's sonatas are inadvertently re-produced. Whatever zintillion centuries that takes, you take that same monkey, give him an easel and unlimited sketchpads and wait until he inadvertently re-creates the Mona Lisa.

Now when all those three things are done, you will be very, very bored. Yet this too would be but an eyeblink in eternity.

My point is, do we really want to live for all eternity? Be careful what you wish for.

29 posted on 05/11/2007 7:30:38 PM PDT by SamAdams76 (I am 74 days away from outliving Curt Hennig (whoever he is))
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To: SamAdams76

The thought of someday returning to the state I was in before I was conceived and staying there for all eternity isn’t exactly pleasant, either.
Existentialsim isn’t for wusses.


30 posted on 05/11/2007 7:42:31 PM PDT by gcruse
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To: Tanniker Smith
I'm a "brother" although nun too good at spellin, Sun...Son!
31 posted on 05/11/2007 10:00:42 PM PDT by HardStarboard (Take No Prisoners - We're Out of Qurans)
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