It was something that was long theorized, but only recently have scientists been able to confirm that our solar system is leaving a trail in it’s wake. As our solar system travels through the milky way galaxy, it trails charged particles behind it. Called a Heliotail, the stream of protons and electrons stretches for tens of billions of miles. In 2012, NASA’s Interstellar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, provided a first-ever look at this tail and it’s surprising shape.
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“It lets you make images of what could never be seen before.”
– David McComas, IBEX principal investigator at Southwest Research Institute
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