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Pioneers' Funky Voyage

By Logan Wright

The space probes Pioneer 10 and 11 (launched in 1972 and 1973 respectively) have long ago completed their trips through the solar system, but scientists are still paying attention to the ancient space travelers. Though Pioneer 11 was lost in 1995, both probes have inexplicably experienced unforeseen changes in their projected paths. To further add to the mystery, both seem to have moved off their route in the exact same way.

Flustered physicists and astronomers have eliminated computer errors, solar winds, and fuels leaks from the list of possible explanations and are now turning to other scientific mysteries like dark matter to try to explain the Pioneer probes’ altered trajectory.

More information: The Problem with Gravity

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20 Jul 2011
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