This shows the relative position of the new satellites with respect to where Saturn resides. These moons are the outmost moons of Saturn.
Click on image for full size
Adapted from Image from Observatoire de la Cote d'Azur
Saturn Holds Title for Most Moons! (Updated)
News story originally written on January 19, 2001
In the last 20 years, there have been many observations that lead us to think that Saturn
has many more small moons than we previously thought. In fact, in October 2000, a group of astronomers led by Brett Gladman of France's Observatoire de la Cote d'Azur and JJ Kavelaars of McMaster University in Canada announced their discovery of 4 new moons of Saturn
. For now, their names are S/2000 S1, S/2000 S2, S/2000 S3 and S/2000 S4. Then in November 2000, the team spotted two additional moons, S/2000 S5 and S/2000 S6. To top that, they found four more Saturnian moons in December 2000, S/2000 S7 - S/2000 S10. That brings Saturn's total moon count to 28 moons! The finding of 10 moons in about 6 weeks is virually unprecendented in astronomical history! This sure is an exciting time!
Good observations back the claim to these moons being true satellites. All 10 of these moons will be renamed once they are confirmed. These new moons are very small moons (less than 50 km across) and are likely icy moons.
It will be up to the Cassini probe's arrival in 2004 to verify S/2000 S1-S10.
Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!
Our online store
includes issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist
, full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science, ranging from seismology
, rocks and minerals
, and Earth system science
You might also be interested in:
The Cassini probe began its journey to Saturn on October 15, 1997. It flew by Earth in August, 1999, before heading towards the distant planet. Cassini passed Jupiter in 2000 and then burned towards its...more
It was another exciting and frustrating year for the space science program. It seemed that every step forward led to one backwards. Either way, NASA led the way to a great century of discovery. Unfortunately,...more
The Space Shuttle Discovery lifted off from Kennedy Space Center at 2:19 p.m. EST, October 29th. The sky was clear and the weather was great as Discovery took 8 1/2 minutes to reach orbit for the Unitied...more
A moon was discovered orbiting the asteroid, Eugenia. This is only the second time in history that a satellite has been seen circling an asteroid. A special mirror allowed scientists to find the moon...more
Will Russia ever put the service module for the International Space Station in space? NASA officials are demanding an answer from the Russian government. The necessary service module is currently waiting...more
During a period of about two days in early May, 1998, the ACE spacecraft was immersed in plasma associated with a coronal mass ejection (CME). The SWICS instrument on ACE, which determines unambiguously...more
J.S. Maini of the Canadian Forest Service has referred to forests as the "heart and lungs of the world." Forests reduce soil erosion, maintain water quality, contribute to atmospheric humidity and cloud...more