Robert M. Walker Distinguished Lecture Public Lecture
"The Voyager Journey to Interstellar Space"
Launched in 1977 to explore Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune , the two Voyager spacecraft revealed a solar system of surprising diversity. They have since continued their journeys far beyond the planets as they searched for the helosphere, the giant bubble of wind surrounding the sun. Outside the bubble lies interstellar space, the space between the stars filled with matter from the explosions of other stars and by the magenetic field of the Milky Way. After a thirty-five year journey taking it eleven billion miles from the sun, Voyager 1 became the first human-made object to enter interstellar space. In the next several years Voyager 2 will join Voyager 1 in exploring the space between the stars. The scientific highlights of this epoch making journey will be presented.