dimanche 25 septembre 2016

Voyager Golden Record ready to land on Earth

NASA - Voyager 1 & 2 Mission patch.

September 25, 2016

In the USA, an initiative aimed at making available to earthlings the Golden Record, Album designed for extraterrestrials.

In 2017, it will make 40 years that NASA has sent probes Voyager 1 and 2, on which hung the Golden Record, explore the outer solar system. In view of this anniversary, a label of San Francisco launched a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter to publish on vinyl sound substance of the famous disc 12-inch gold-plated.

Image above: The Golden Record aboard Voyager 1 and 2. Image Credit: NASA.

The project will become reality if backed up to 200,000 francs. before 21 October 2016. This is the case because in 48 hours, Internet users have already promised 330,000 francs. If the interest is huge, it is that there is at present on our planet no copy of the cake sent into space to present the Earth to aliens. Even the famous astrophysicist Carl Sagan had not obtained copy, while he was yet in the scientific head of the team responsible for defining its content.

Artist's view of the Voyager probe. Image Credit: NASA

To recall, in the furrows of the Golden Record included among other images of our planet (which will be the subject of a book), various sounds from wind noise to the cries of animals, greetings in 55 languages and 90 minutes of music. Among the titles sent into the cosmos include "Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Berry, "Melancholy Blues" of Louis Armstrong and works by Bach, Mozart and Beethoven.

Chuck Berry - Johnny B. Goode

The track, of course, comes from the famous Golden Record, a copy of which is aboard each of two of NASA's most famous spacecraft. Back in the summer of 1977, the space agency launched Voyager 1 and 2 toward Jupiter and Saturn to explore those worlds up-close for the first time. But the space probes didn't stick around; they kept going and going.

On the off-chance that either of the robots might encounter a sentient alien race, scientists pre-loaded two 12-inch gold-plated phonograph records with grainy sounds and images reminiscent of our diverse and vibrant life here on Earth. Then they attached one record to each spacecraft before launching them: http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/spacecraft/goldenrec.html

For the first time, NASA has strung together each of the nearly 20 individual sounds of Earth into one beautiful yet eerie track, which the space agency just released to SoundCloud for your listening pleasure: https://soundcloud.com/nasa/sets/golden-record-sounds-of

Graphics above: NASA left instructions on each of the Voyager's golden records for extraterrestrial life to enjoy. Graphics Credit: NASA.

NASA meant for the recordings to serve as an auditory and visual time capsule of sorts — and a sleeker, updated take on a six-by-nine-inch golden plaque launched with each of the Pioneer 10 and 11 spacecraft. Those plaques were engraved with a naked man and woman gesturing goodwill, then bolted to the outside of each spacecraft's frame:

Image above: Pioneer 10 and 11, launched in 1972, were the first spacecraft to leave our solar system. Image Credits: NASA/WikiMedia Commons.

The contents of the record were selected for NASA by a committee chaired by Carl Sagan of Cornell University, et. al. Dr. Sagan and his associates assembled 115 images and a variety of natural sounds, such as those made by surf, wind and thunder, birds, whales, and other animals.

Artist's view of the Pioneer probe. Image Credits: NASA/WikiMedia Commons

To this they added musical selections from different cultures and eras, and spoken greetings from Earth-people in fifty-five languages, and printed messages from President Carter and U.N. Secretary General Waldheim. Each record is encased in a protective aluminum jacket, together with a cartridge and a needle. Instructions, in symbolic language, explain the origin of the spacecraft and indicate how the record is to be played.

Voyager Golden Record Explained

The definitive work about the Voyager record is "Murmurs of Earth" by Executive Director, Carl Sagan, Technical Director, Frank Drake, Creative Director, Ann Druyan, Producer, Timothy Ferris, Designer, Jon Lomberg, and Greetings Organizer, Linda Salzman. Basically, this book is the story behind the creation of the record, and includes a full list of everything on the record. "Murmurs of Earth", originally published in 1978, was reissued in 1992 by Warner News Media with a CD-ROM that replicates the Voyager record. Unfortunately, this book is now out of print, but it is worth the effort to try and find a used copy or browse through a library copy.

Related links:

Pioneer 10 and 11: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/missions/archive/pioneer10-11.html

Voyager 1 & 2: http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/

Images (mentioned), Videos, Text, Credits: NASA/Wikipedia/Jhon Lomberg/YouTube/Orbiter.ch Aerospace/Roland Berga.

Best regards, Orbiter.ch

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