H2: There are three different computer types on the Voyager spacecraft.
H3: The digital data rates used in the downlinks from the Voyagers have been continually decreasing the farther that they get from the Earth
H4: Voyager 1 completed the phase of termination shock in December 2004.
H5: Both spacecraft carry with them a 12-inch (30 cm) golden phonograph record that contains pictures and sounds of Earth.
H6: LOW RATE TELEMETRY IS ROUTED THROUGH THE TMU SUCH THAT IT CAN ONLY BE DOWNLINKED AS UNCODED BITS.
Apparently we had reached a great height in the atmosphere, for the sky was a dead black, and the stars had ceased to twinkle. By the same illusion which lifts the horizon of the sea to the level of the spectator on a hillside, the sable cloud beneath was dished out, and the car seemed to float in the middle of an immense dark sphere, whose upper half was strewn with silver. Looking down into the dark gulf below, I could see a ruddy light streaming through a rift in the clouds.
Voyager telemetry operates at these transmission rates:
7200, 1400 bit/s tape recorder playbacks
600 bit/s real-time fields, particles, and waves; full UVS; engineering
160 bit/s real-time fields, particles, and waves; UVS subset; engineering
40 bit/s real-time engineering data, no science data.
The Voyager craft have three different telemetry formats:
CR-5T (ISA 35395) Science, note that this can contain some engineering data.
FD-12 higher accuracy (and time resolution) Engineering data, note that some science data may also be encoded.
EL-40 Engineering, note that this format can contain some science data, but not all systems represented.
This is an abbreviated format, with data truncation for some subsystems.
The Voyager Program was similar to the Planetary Grand Tour planned during the late 1960s and early 70s. The Grand Tour would take advantage of an alignment of the outer planets discovered by Gary Flandro, an aerospace engineer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
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