UNITED STATES: Astronomers have found 12 brand-new moons around Jupiter, marking a significant discovery outside the Earth’s orbit.
The gas giant has recently displaced Saturn as the planet with the most moons. In comparison to Saturn, which is surrounded by rings, Jupiter now boasts a staggering 92 moons.
Twelve new moons were discovered by astronomer Scott Sheppard of the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington. The Minor Planet Center (MPC) has secretly released information on and confirmation of the new moons.
Small moons of Jupiter or Saturn that have been discovered are reported in Minor Planet Center Electronic Circulars.
These 92 moons have transformed the Jovian system into a miniature solar system. Jupiter is already the largest planet in our solar system. With orbits that are over 340 days long, the recently discovered moons are small and far away. 9 out of the 12 moons are among the 71 that are furthest from Jupiter and have orbits longer than 550 days.
There are 13 other moons that revolve in a prograde orientation between the large, nearby Galilean moons and the far-off retrograde moons, according to sources. There are three of the recently discovered moons among them.
Just one year before NASA is getting ready to launch a mission to investigate the Jovian worlds, the moons were discovered. The first comprehensive investigation of an ocean world beyond Earth is being planned by the Europa Clipper mission.
The probe will find out if there are suitable conditions for life on this far-off moon. The expedition’s goal is to explore Europa and determine whether it is habitable.
45 flybys of Europa will be made by the spacecraft at closest-approach altitudes ranging from 2700 kilometres to 25 kilometres above the planet’s surface.
Instead of searching for life, the mission will attempt to provide answers to particular queries concerning Europa’s ocean, ice shell, chemistry, and geology.
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