Happy Birthday Voyager

"Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." — Carl Sagan

Imagine traveling at 30,000 miles per hour. At that speed, you would travel the distance between New York City and Los Angeles in 6 minutes.

Go at that speed for 40 years and you will have traveled about 12 billion miles.

The space probes called "Voyager" were launched in August and September of 1977 which was forty years ago! They have traveled at 30,000 miles per hour going the distance of 12,000,000,000 miles! They are well past the orbit of Pluto. They are exploring just beyond the reaches of our solar system into interstellar space.

In 1977 I was a teenager reading volumes of science fiction books which explored in ideas our solar system and beyond. While I was doing this reading, engineers were designing a system that actually went beyond the outer reaches of our solar system.

I applaud the engineers of these magnificent travelers for both their technical skills and for the imagination they possessed for what is possible. I applaud the engineers of today who keep the communications channels open across the 12 billion miles of space.

These Voyagers are still communicating with us earthbound humans providing us with discoveries that feed our thirst for knowledge and inspire our imagination.

Let us all imagine that we can solve the difficult, sometimes seemingly impossible challenges we face. Then, let us put our skills to use. With the right thinking and time scale, we can and will do amazing positive solutions.

Yours in the calm pursuit of excellence,
ALAN WILLETT