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35 Years On, Voyager’s Legacy Continues at Saturn

25 August 2016 Astronomy Now

Voyager 2 made its closest approach to Saturn 35 years ago — on 25 August 1981. What the Voyagers revealed at the planet was so phenomenal that, just one year later, a joint American and European working group began discussing a mission that would carry on Voyager’s legacy at Saturn.

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Voyager 2 launched today in 1977

20 August 2016 Astronomy Now

On this day in 1977, NASA’s Voyager 2 spacecraft, the first Voyager spacecraft to launch, departed on a journey that would take it to Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune and beyond.

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NASA’s IBEX observations pin down interstellar magnetic field

28 February 2016 Astronomy Now

Immediately after its 2008 launch, NASA’s Interstellar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, spotted a curiosity in a thin slice of space: More particles streamed in through a long, skinny swath in the sky than anywhere else. The origin of the so-called IBEX ribbon was unknown — but its very existence opened doors to observing what lies outside our solar system.

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Thirtieth anniversary of Voyager 2’s encounter with Uranus

24 January 2016 Astronomy Now

Humanity has visited Uranus only once, and that was exactly 30 years ago. NASA’s Voyager 2 spacecraft got its closest look at the mysterious, distant, gaseous planet on 24 January 1986. The probe sent back stunning images of the coldest planet known in our solar system and its moons during the flyby, which allowed for about 5½ hours of close study.