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Originally posted by ElectricUniverse
Talking about messages being sent to space. Has anyone else sent information about themselves to outer space? There were two programs, one by NASA, in which I sent the name of my then girlfriend and mine together. I can't remember what the program was named.
[edit on 13-5-2010 by ElectricUniverse]
Electrical power is supplied by three radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs). They are powered by plutonium-238 (distinct from the Pu-239 isotope used in nuclear weapons) and provided approximately 470 W at 30 volts DC when the spacecraft was launched. Plutonium-238 decays with a half-life of 87.74 years, so RTGs using Pu-238 will lose a factor of 1 - 0.5[1/87.74] = 0.78% of their power output per year.
In 2006, 29 years after launch, such an RTG would produce only 470 W × 2-(29/87.74) ~= 373 W — or about 79.5% — of its initial power. Moreover, the bi-metallic thermocouples that convert heat into electricity also degrade, so the actual power will be even lower.
As of 2009-09-25 the power generated by Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 had dropped to 276.4 W and 277.6 W respectively. This is about 58% of the power at launch. This level of power output so far has been better than the pre-launch predictions based on a conservative thermocouple degradation model. As the electrical power decreases, spacecraft loads must be turned off, eliminating some spacecraft capabilities.
Originally posted by Max_TO
Seeing just how vast space is we must keep in mind that Voyager is very very close to us when we look at this in space terms . If an alien race was able to get to and find Voyager then we would only be a hop and a skip away . They , the aliens , would see Earth long before they noticed Voyager and assuming they , the aliens . wanted to get in touch with us they would simply pop into orbit and tweak an orbiting satellite . They would not fly light years to simply stop at our relative door step to pick a needle out of a hay stack .
None the less its a very interesting find and thanks for posting
Originally posted by theQuest
Maybe its just me, and if Im alone here then forgive my ignorance, but I for one have a real hard time believing we are still able to send and recieve any functioning commands to Voyager 2. This thing was built 35 years ago, when our computer systems were in the infant stage, yet we somehow have the technology to upload software patches and download data from it. There are more functions available on a cheap Casio digital watch than what the entire system of the Voyager 2 is comprised of, as aknowledged by NASA, yet we are still able to communicate with it, from over 10 billion+ miles away??? Im not buying it....To me, "happenings" like these are blips to keep our focus shifted in the direction they want us looking in, not where we would choose to be looking if we were to know all of what is going on...People make the argument to others trying to defend stuff like this, when to me it seems as something that serves to ridicule us even more in the face of non-believers...just my .02
Originally posted by fixer1967
That is what makes me think the signal source is not Voyager. Voyager is simply picking up a signal and retransmitting it. Nothing more, nothing less.
Engineers have since instructed Voyager 2 to only transmit data on its own health and status while they work on the problem.
Originally posted by amari
reply to post by tothetenthpower
By reprogramming the computer into a different computer language and
format the aliens are showing their superior intelligence and saying to
us figure it out if you can. ^Y^
Here comes the kicker what if the aliens continue with this specific
program and they know we are recording the information sent back
by Voyager 2 and they change the program again. Then we
know this is for real. ^Y^