Where to next, Voyager 1?
March 20, 2013 10:00 AM   Subscribe

Voyager 1 just left the solar system. I know we're unable to control trajectory at this point, but I'm curious what the next body it will encounter will be, and when, on its present course.
posted by radiosilents to Science & Nature (11 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
Wikipedia says it will pass within 1.6 light years of Gliese 445 in the year 42000-ish AD.
posted by theodolite at 10:03 AM on March 20, 2013


It is heading towards a star called AC +793888, but won't get there for another 40 000 years.

source: BBC News
posted by katrielalex at 10:04 AM on March 20, 2013


Lots here:
Voyager 1 is escaping the solar system at a speed of about 3.5 AU per year, 35 degrees out of the ecliptic plane to the north, in the general direction of the Solar Apex (the direction of the Sun's motion relative to nearby stars). Voyager 1 will leave the solar system aiming toward the constellation Ophiuchus. In the year 40,272 AD, Voyager 1 will come within 1.7 light years of an obscure star in the constellation Ursa Minor (the Little Bear or Little Dipper) called AC+79 3888.
posted by thelonius at 10:08 AM on March 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


Just to clarify, Gliese 445 and AC+79 3888 are different names for the same star.
posted by gubo at 10:27 AM on March 20, 2013


I think it still has to pass through the Oort Cloud. So it'll probably see some comets first
posted by empath at 11:26 AM on March 20, 2013


Nasa page
posted by goethean at 11:35 AM on March 20, 2013


Blasdelb: "I suppose we can only hope its true destination is a nice museum somewhere on Earth after our descendants send someone go and pick it up"

Unlike Voyager 6, which will be found by someone else.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:40 AM on March 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think it still has to pass through the Oort Cloud. So it'll probably see some comets first

I think comet density would be pretty low, even if there are lots of them.
posted by stopgap at 11:47 AM on March 20, 2013


Not that it's relevant to the spirit of the question, but apparently JPL disagrees with the assessment that Voyager 1 has left the solar system.
posted by rocketpup at 1:12 PM on March 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


As a related hopefully-not-too-derailing derail...

Has anyone ever found a calculation that, assuming she turned around and got back within a few weeks or so (or whatever the span of time referenced in the movie could be calculated)... how far Voyager really would have gotten by 2271 when it turned around and became V'ger and ate starships in Star Trek I?
posted by Seeba at 2:38 PM on March 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Has anyone ever found a calculation that, assuming she turned around and got back within a few weeks or so (or whatever the span of time referenced in the movie could be calculated)... how far Voyager really would have gotten by 2271 when it turned around and became V'ger and ate starships in Star Trek I?

I believe the idea was that intelligent life came upon the broken down Voyager 6 and decided to repair and improve it to help it on its quest for knowledge. We don't know when that happened, but once V'Ger got faster than light travel capabilities, it becomes nearly impossible to calculate how far it went. But using Star Trek math, I think we can calculate the furthest it could have gone?

Normal warp drives could go approximately 10,000 light years per year. The Star Trek plot says Voyager 6 was a 20th century ship, so it had ~300 years to piss around space and do its thing. So a maximum of 1,500,000 light years?

Unless it had the power of time travel or faster than Warp propulsion, in which case all bets are off.
posted by gjc at 4:01 PM on March 20, 2013


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