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More Moons around Jupiter & Saturn
Astronomers have recently discovered several more moons in our Solar System.
Scott Sheppard and David Jewitt of the University of Hawaii and Jan Kleyna
of Cambridge University announced the discovery of eight new moons of Jupiter and
one new moon of Saturn. Jupiter now has 60
known moons and Saturn has 31 moons that have been discovered to date. The
new moons were discovered using telescopes on the top of the volcano Mauna
Kea in Hawaii.
The eight newest moons of Jupiter will
be known as S/2003 J13 through J20 for now; permanent names will be assigned
later. All eight are very small, having diameters
of about two to three kilometers (a mile or two). Sheppard, Jewitt,
and Kleyna had discovered
12 new moons of Jupiter earlier this year. Astronomers think there
may be as many as 100 moons with diameters of one kilometer or larger orbiting
Jupiter, so don't be surprised if more moons of the Solar System's largest
planet are discovered soon!
The new moon of Saturn is known as S/2003 S1 for now. It is about eight kilometers
(five miles) across, and is the first
new moon of Saturn discovered since December 2000. Scientists think the Cassini
spacecraft may discover many
more moons orbiting Saturn when it
arrives at and goes into orbit around the ringed planet in 2004.
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