Tag Archives: Voyager 2

Voyagers’ 40 Year Eternal Mission

On the 20th of August 1977 it started – Voyager 2 was launched. Then on the 5th of September the twin spacecraft Voyager 1 was launched. Despite being the second to be launched Voyager 1 was names number one as it would arrive at it’s destinations before it’s sister craft.

Voyager Timeline


On the 5th March 1979 and the 7th of July 1979 respectively they arrived at their first destination. For the first time we could see Jupiter and it’s moons in high quality. Even though they only flew past they found Volcanoes on Io, Jupiter’s rings, Europa’s ice cracked surface and more moons to add to it’s already large number.








After this they both went on to Saturn, Arriving on the 12th of November 1980 and August the 25th 1981 respectively.


saturn voy 2

saturn voy 1

They found a frozen world, which much like Jupiter had storms, we saw the rings of this world in more detail than ever before and it’s largest moon, Titan was found to have a thick atmosphere.wp-1504725033753.

At this point Voyager 1 was flung from the solar system by Saturn’s gravity, Voyager 2 continued the mission to the last of the outer planets alone.



So far every planet had it’s surprises, and Uranus was no exception. On the 24th of January Voyager 2 made it’s lonely flyby and a planet that was almost completely featureless. Magnetic instruments found it was like the planet had been knocked on it’s side, both the rings and the planets magnetic field were side on to the other planets.



Miranda, one of it’s moons had a crazy mashed up surface, broken up by gravitational pulling. Voyager 2 added more moons to the planets number.



On the 25th August 1989 Voyager 2’s final visit in our solar system had finally been reached.


Neptune was again a very different world, made mostly of Methane this beautiful blue world showed off the great black spot – a storm that looked like an eye looking out at you. With Winds faster than the speed of sound this was not all Neptune revealed.

Neptune’s largest moon Triton was found to have active ice volcanoes, introducing us to the concept of cryo volcanism. Voyager found some faint rings and more moons for the blue giant.


After Neptune, there wasn’t much or the Voyager probes to do, February 1999 Voyager 1 took a last look back at the solar system and the planet from where it came and took a last picture – a portrait of the solar system.

Voyage Portrait

In 1999, Voyager 1 passed Pioneer 10, becoming the furthest man made object in space.

In 2004 and 2007 respectively the spacecraft encountered the terminator shock as they left the solar system and entered interstellar space. They are now on their way to the stars. Carrying with them records and messages from humanity from who or whatever might encounter them.

Despite being launch 40 years ago their mission may never end, ambassadors to eternity to the species that made and launched them hoping to make their mark in the universe. If left alone these two incredible machines will outlive not only the race that made them, but also the planet from where they came.

Now that it truly incredible.

Simon 🙂

No ownership claimed on images Credit to NASA and JPL.