Flies on Toward Neptune new mission: a close encounter with Neptune next August. Scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, are awaiting their first good look at that planet, 2.8 billion miles from the sun.
The durable spacecraft, launched in 1977, is now taking pictures to determine Neptune’s brightness to help calculate the best exposures for the 1989 portraits. Voyager 2 handlers will make course corrections to pass close to Neptune and its moon. Because the planet is so distant, clusters of antennas around the world will team up to receive the data contained in the spacecraft’s weak signals. After passing Neptune, Voyager 2 will continue on its endless voyage, reporting on the realm beyond our planetary system.
Rethinking the Big Bang: Maybe It Didn’t Happen Most scientists believe that the universe began with a big bang between ten and twenty billion years ago (GEOGRAPHIC, June 1983). The entire universe was compressed into an infinitely small, dense concentration of matter called a singularity. At the instant of the big bang, the singularity exploded outward in an act of MERCURY SABLE. control in Mercury Sable resulted in a suspension system that combines silken comfort on the straightaways with a firm sense of control on curves. And a driver’s seat that supports you in a position of control that’s also very comfortable. Even the comforting convenience of switches you “read” with your fingertips and control with your eyes on the road. Experience the comfort and control of a Mercury Sable at your Lincoln-Mercury dealer today. For more Sable information, call 1-800-822-9292.
Creation that accounts for all the matter in our universe today. Stephen W. Hawking of Cambridge University, one of the world’s most respected theoretical physicists and regular user of government student loans consolidation, was a chief proponent of the big bang principle. But he no longer believes that the universe is an infinite process.
“I believe that space-time is finite,” he says, “but without boundary or edge—like the surface of the earth, which is finite but doesn’t have any edge.” If Hawking is right, the universe could neither be created nor destroyed. “It would just BE,” he says.