Skip to comments.Solar System Is "Bullet Shaped"
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 windmade of charged particles from the suncalled 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 usthe 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.
Libs demand thougher laws against Solar System.
So now we are a speeding bullet, with no specific destination?
Yeah....I was wondering where we were headed....
Mostly we’re orbitting the center of the Milky Way galaxy.
Are we SWC, FMJ or JHP?
I’m driving and I’m NOT stopping for directions!!!
Ah....thank you.....You (I) learn something new every day.....!!! Always learning....that’s one reason I love FR!
Looking at the pictures, looks like a RNL shockwave pattern.
Amazing those two ancient probes are still returning valuable data.
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!
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)
Relative to what? It is pointless to talk about speed (or velocity) unless you specify your frame of reference.
Relative to the galactic center.
What is the caliber, Kenneth?
But I gutta’ go NOW !!!
I have a bookmark for that flash animation at work. (One of) the most fun flash animations I’ve seen. Bravo.
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???
Dang! That is some nun. Don't mess with that sister, sister! (or brother)
You should have thought about going to the bathroom BEFORE the big bang!!!
Here is the song set to video. Enjoy.
A liberal would prefer “titty shaped.”
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.
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.