LOS ANGELES — The unstoppable Voyager 1 spacecraft has sailed into a new realm of the solar system that scientists did not know existed.
Voyager 1 and its twin, Voyager 2, have been speeding away from the sun toward interstellar space, or the space between stars.
Over the summer, Voyager 1, which is farther along in its journey, crossed into this new region where the effects from the outside can be felt.
“We do believe this may be the very last layer between us and interstellar space,” said chief scientist Ed Stone of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which manages the spacecraft.
Stone presented Voyager 1′s latest location at a meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco.
Voyager 1 is on track to become the first manmade object to exit the solar system. Exactly when that day will come is unknown, partly because there’s no precedent.