Originally posted by wrkn4livn
Originally posted by Philosophile
If Voyager I is at the edge of our solar system, and our solar system is roughly 100 light years across, then shouldn't it take around 100 years for
us to receive any signal from Voyager 1 to pick up any picture transmission? I'm JUST asking because I don't know either that's just my idea.
I think it's the galaxy that's 100 light years across....
The Galaxy is 100,000
light years across, not 100.
100 light years is both small and big -- depending on the scales you are talking about. For example, within 100 light years of us are about 2,000
stars. That's a lot of stars. That sounds big in comparison to the Earth (and it is -- in comparison to Earth).
However, lets look at it from a galactic perspective. We have been sending radio signals into space for about 100 years now with our early radio (and
later TV) broadcasts. That means those radio waves have traveled a radius of 100 light years -- that's a bubble or sphere of radio waves that is 200
light years in diameter.
That sounds big, but take a look at that 200 light-year sphere relative to the galaxy in the artist's illustration in this article linked below (that
tiny blue dot is the 200 light year sphere):
The Tiny Humanity Bubble
Remember -- that little blue dot in that article is NOT our solar system -- that dot much bigger than our solar system. That dot is only how far our
earliest radio broadcasts have gone (at the speed of light) in 100 years. Our solar system is pretty damn insignificant in the grand scheme of
things. It would take Voyager 1.75 MILLION years to go as far as those radio broadcasts have gone so far.
And this is only at the scale of our galaxy...there are hundreds of Billions of other galaxies in the universe -- making our solar system even far,
far, far, far, far less significant to the universe than the tiniest dust speck is to us. We are smaller than miniscule.
edit on 12/4/2012 by Soylent Green Is People because: (no reason given)