Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

Living Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James Cleaves, Daniele Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Michel Viso

Voyager, Spacecraft

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27833-4_1673-2

Synonyms

Definition

The Voyager mission was designed to take advantage of a rare geometric arrangement of layout of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, which occurs about every 175 years. This allowed for a four-planet tour for a minimum of propellant and trip time. The flyby of each planet bends the spacecraft’s flight path and increases its velocity enough to deliver it to the next destination. Using this “gravity assist” technique, the flight time to Neptune was reduced from 30 to 12 years.

Both spacecrafts were launched from Cape Canaveral. Voyager 2 was launched first, on August 20, 1977; Voyager 1 was launched on a faster, shorter trajectory on September 5, 1977.

Overview

The prime mission to Jupiter and Saturn brought Voyager 1 to Jupiter on March 5, 1979, and Saturn on November 12, 1980, followed by Voyager 2 to Jupiter on July 9, 1979, and Saturn on August 25, 1981. Voyager 1’s trajectory, designed to send the spacecraft close to Titan and behind...

Keywords

Solar System Flight Time Flight Path Interplanetary Space Thermoelectric Generator 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CNES/DSP/SMEVétérinaire/DVM, Astro/ExobiologyParisFrance