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Voyager 1′s climate snapshot for the heavens

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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How would explain humanity to another race? What would you include? Would you use pictures? Sound? Math?

What does it mean to live on Earth? To be human?

When we launched the Voyager 1 space probe we included all of these things with the hope that some other lifeforms would discover them and learn about us. You can view all of them on this web page.

This photograph stood out to me about how we explain what Earth is and why life has been able to take hold: how our atmosphere keeps us just warm enough to survive. Notice that the fraction of carbon dioxide is 3/10000. If we sent a space probe out to interstellar space it would need to say 4/10000 too before long.




David Wogan About the Author: An engineer and policy researcher who writes about energy, technology, and policy - and everything in between. Based in Austin, Texas. Comments? Follow on Twitter @davidwogan.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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  1. 1. princeashley22 3:27 pm 09/16/2013

    my neighbor’s aunt makes $88 every hour on the computer. She has been fired for 8 months but last month her payment was $19553 just working on the computer for a few hours. webpage…..

    Link to this
  2. 2. omsaihari 10:01 am 09/20/2013

    If the current carbon level in our atmosphere is 4 per 10000, wonder what it will be,if we continue to add huge amounts of CO2,40,000 years when Voyager reaches alien galaxies and signals back to an asphyxiated planet?

    Link to this

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