What's the furthest man-made object out in space?

20 February 2011

Question

What is the furthest man-made item in space that’s still sending information back to Earth?

Answer

Dave - The furthest one out there which overtook quite recently is Voyager 1. This is sitting out at about 116 AUs, that's 116 times further out from the Sun than the Earth is. Ben - Because one 1 AU is the distance between Earth and the Sun. Dave - That's right. So, it's about 17.2 billion kilometres. Ben - Right. Dave - It's sitting out there. It's running out of power very slowly. By about 2025, it's not going to have any power and the poor thing is going to die, but it's just been going through these heliopause I was talking about earlier in about the last year. All the magnetic fields have started to change radically at the moment and it's still doing important science even after 25, 30 years.

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