Voyager 1 is a space probe launched by NASA on September 5th 1977 to study the outer Solar System. It has now been operating for over 38 years, communicating with the Deep Space Network to receive routine commands and return data. It is the furthest man made object from Earth. NASA announced on August 25th 2012 that Voyager 1 had crossed the heliopause and entered interstellar space. Its present velocity is about 520 million kilometers per year. Voyager 1 is expected to continue its mission until 2025 when its generators will no longer supply enough power for its instruments.
Top image: Interstellar Envelope. This gold aluminum cover was designed to protect the Voyager 1 and 2 "Sounds of Earth" gold-plated records from micrometeorite bombardment, but also serves a double purpose in providing the finder a key to playing the record. The explanatory diagram appears on both the inner and outer surfaces of the cover, as the outer diagram will be eroded in time.
Flying aboard Voyagers 1 and 2 are identical records, carrying the story of Earth far into deep space. The 12-inch gold-plated copper discs contain greetings in 60 languages, samples of music from different cultures and eras and natural and man-made sounds from Earth. They also contain electronic information that an advanced technological civilization could convert into diagrams and images.
Sounds electronically placed onboard the Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft.
Music of The Spheres; Volcanoes, Earthquake, Thunder; Mud Pots; Wind, Rain, Surf; Crickets, Frogs; Birds, Hyena, Elephant; Chimpanzee; Wild Dog; Footsteps, Heartbeat, Laughter; Fire, Speech; The First Tools; Tame Dog; Herding Sheep, Blacksmith, Sawing; Tractor, Riveter; Morse Code, Ships; Horse and Cart; Train; Tractor, Bus, Auto; F-111 Flyby, Saturn 5 Lift-off; Kiss, Mother and Child; Life Signs, Pulsar.