abs Using results of remote sensing by energetic neutral atoms from IBEX, SOHO/HSTOF, and Cassini/INCA, in situ measurements of ∼40-4000 keV protons in the heliosheath (HS) from Low Energy Charged Particle on Voyager 1 and Voyager 2, and outputs from numerical modeling of the termination shock, we estimate L, the characteristic thickness of the HS in the "upwind" direction (±45° in ecliptic longitude of the Nose at λ = 255°). A simple steady-state, internally consistent model gives L = 21 ± 6 AU for Voyager 1, L = 28 ± 8 AU for Voyager 2, and L = 25 ± 8 AU assuming that the same L value is valid for both spacecraft. We recognize that this is a very coarse cut at a very dynamic region of the heliosphere; but if the lower value L = 21 AU applies, one could expect Voyager 1 to cross the heliopause as early as late 2010.
- Acceleration of particles-methods
- Data analysis-plasmas-shock waves-space vehicles
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science