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Saturday, June 11, 2011

Voyager Probe Encounters Magnetic Bubbles

The American Voyager spaceprobes,  traveling through space since 1977, indicate the fringe of the solar system is awash with activity of a bubbly, frothy outer layer at the edge of the area known as the heliospheric current.

Information transmitted from the the 34-year old probes has allowed scientists to construct a better picture of what it's like on the edge of the solar system that abuts the space beyond, the BBC reported.

The Voyager spacecraft have now found that when the separation of sectors becomes very small, the sectored magnetic field breaks up into a sea of nested "magnetic bubbles" in a phenomenon called magnetic reconnection. The region of nested bubbles is carried by the solar wind to the north and south filling out the entire front region of the heliopause and the sector region in the heliosheath.