Due to the fact that it is the largest planet in the solar system, Jupiter has already earned its place as the king of the planets.
Twelve new moons have been discovered around Jupiter, raising the total number of known moons to 92. During observations, astronomer Scott Sheppard and his team from the Carnegie Institution for Science discovered the discovery.
Jupiter Has New Moons
In September 2021, they utilized the Subaru Telescope in Hawaii, and in August 2022, the Dark Energy Camera was installed on the Blanco telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. Dark Energy Camera has the ability to identify weak astronomical objects.
Jupiter and its natural satellites were aligned with more distant targets that Sheppard and his colleagues had been searching for in the Kuiper Belt, a ring of icy objects orbiting the sun that is positioned beyond Neptune’s orbit.
Due to the fact that any objects encircling Jupiter would be traveling at the same speed as the gas giant, the team was able to differentiate Jupiter from distant solar system objects.
Objects in the outer solar system cannot travel as quickly as Jupiter-bound objects. The crew utilized the Magellan Telescope in Chile in order to accomplish their task.
The Minor Planet Center will assign each moon a number in the coming months. The moons have yet to be given names, as their discovery was recently reported.
Minor Planet Center monitors minor planets, comets, and space objects. The organization is responsible for the identification, naming, and orbital data of such celestial objects under the auspices of the International Astronomical Union.
The International Astronomical Union permits the naming of any moon larger than approximately 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) in diameter. Since half of these newly discovered moons are larger than this size requirement, they will be given names.
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Search For New Moons
Due to the fact that Jupiter is a bright planet, astronomers have had to address the issue of glare and dispersed light affecting the space where moons can exist.
The discovery of additional moons orbiting Jupiter and the determination of their orbits could facilitate the identification of future mission targets. Jupiter and some of its moons will be explored this decade by the European Space Agency’s Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer mission, which will launch in April, and NASA‘s Europa Clipper mission, which is slated to launch in 2024.
In addition, the missions may stop at the newly discovered moons en route. The expectation is that if we identify enough of them, one will come close enough to the spacecraft’s course for it to obtain detailed photographs.
These outer moons are crucial to comprehend because they are the last remains of the population of objects that originated in the vicinity of the massive planets while the rest of the material was incorporated into planets.
The zone of big planets contains the largest planets in our solar system, and it is now empty of objects because the planets consumed all of the material during their formation.
The moons are relics of what originated in the disk of gas and dust surrounding Jupiter after the planet formed and subsequently captured and drew the majority of the material into its orbit. These planetary building components provide an insight into the early history of the solar system.
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