This is part of a wider project (link not available) on Voyager 1 and the Golden Record.
Current data on these probes are available via the Heavens Above website.
I've called this blog "Astro Illogical" since on the face of it star charts for things that leave our sun's sphere of influence are non-sensical. But perhaps others can provide another interpretation.
They are compiled here because I think its interesting to reflect on these probes which are all expected to leave the sphere of influence of our solar system. The astrological charts provide information on the influence the solar system had on the craft when they were launched. Unlike people, for whom star charts are routinely complied, these objects are leaving the solar system.
I don't know whether astrologists would argue that the influence of the stars is decreasing as the probes make their way out of our solar system. I'm interested in the poetry of such objects so far from earth, but made here, and their destiny amongst the stars.
As of 2/1/2012 (January) the positions of these 5 craft were as follows:
| ||Pioneer 10||Pioneer 11||Voyager 2||Voyager 1||New Horizons|
|Distance from Sun (AU)||104.938||84.77||97.334||119.339||22.08|
|Speed relative to Sun (km/s)||12.048||11.393||15.449||17.051||15.52|
|Speed relative to Sun (AU/year)||2.542||2.403||3.259||3.597||3.274|
|Right Ascension (J2000)||5.106 hrs||18.734 hrs||19.843 hrs||17.173 hrs||18.715 hrs|
|Distance from Earth (AU)||104.041||85.723||98.147||120.058||23.062|
|One-way light time (hours)||14.42||11.88||13.6||16.64||3.2|
|Magnitude of Sun from spacecraft||-16.6||-17.1||-16.8||-16.3||-20|
|Spacecraft still functioning ?||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes|
Note: the two Pioneer craft's launch times were given in UTC time. I have converted this to local time by adding 5 hours to the reported launch time (UTC=GMT). I hope this is right. If you know otherwise, please let me know.