Wednesday, 17 October, 2018


Astronomers accidentally discover a dozen new moons around Jupiter

Astronomers accidentally discover a dozen new moons around Jupiter Astronomers accidentally discover a dozen new moons around Jupiter
Kristine Garrett | 18 July, 2018, 08:53

Famed astronomer Galileo Galilei discovered the first four moons of Jupiter way back in the early 1600s. With a total of 79 moons, Jupiter is now the most lunar-rich planet in the solar system. After verification, they are being reported today by the International Astronomical Union, based in Paris.

At the time, the researchers were searching for a theorized massive planet far beyond Pluto, known as Planet X or Planet Nine, which is thought to be tugging on the orbits of distant solar system objects.

Using the Blanco four-metre telescope at Cerro Tololo Inter-American in Chile - which had been recently fitted with a new and highly sensitive instrument called the "Dark Energy Camera", which is about the size of a small auto - they detected objects that seemed to be moving against the background stars.

The inner moons take about a year to circle Jupiter, while the outer moons take twice as long. Those moons orbit close to Jupiter and travel in the same direction as the planet spins.

The team is calling one of the new moons an "oddball" because of its unusual orbit.

It's been nicknamed Valetudo after the Roman goddess of health and hygiene who is the great-granddaughter of the god Jupiter. This means it crosses paths with the outer retrograde moons and could collide with them.

Jupiter, the largest planet in the solar system, wasknown to have 67 moons circling around it, including 4 that are easily visible from Earth using just binoculars.

These new moons probably formed in a place in our solar system known as the giant planet region, which is between the asteroid belt, dominated by rocky asteroids, and the Kuiper belt, dominated by icy comets.

With 67 other known moons flying around Jupiter, there's already a good amount of traffic around the gas planet, as shown in the illustration above. And with Jupiter being the biggest planet in our solar system, astronomers need to be able to see as much of the space around it as possible.

"This moon is going down the highway the wrong way", Sheppard said. These satellites are part of a large group of moons that orbit in retrograde far from Jupiter.

But the last moon is a weird one.

Eleven of the newly discovered moons are considered normal, with diameters between 1 and 3 kilometres.

Nine of the new moons are in the retrograde group, a distant bunch of moons that rotate in the opposite direction of Juipter.

One of the new moons was described as a "real oddball" by researcher Scott Sheppard at the Carnegie Institution for Science, because of its tiny size, it measuring just about a half-mile (one kilometer) across. But Valetudo, in addition to being the smallest discovered, orbits in prograde, or the same direction as the planet's spin. Of the 12 latest moons to join Jupiter's family, it's a maverick whose odd orbit may give astronomers crucial insights to understanding how the moons of Jupiter came to be.

Dr Sheppard said: 'This is an unstable situation. In the meantime, they're waiting for the IAU to formally accept "Valetudo" as the name for the oddball moon. They realized they could observe Jupiter at the same time. Because they formed between the two belts, the moons are probably composed of rock and ice.

"If we do find this planet in the next few years, it would be a pretty wonderful discovery for astronomy".

Recommended

loading...
...

Samsung's new DRAM chip will make phones run faster and longer Samsung's new DRAM chip will make phones run faster and longer Samsung expects the high bandwidth of these chips to be leveraged for AI-powered applications and 5G-enabled phones. The company and leading chip vendors have tested an 8GB RAM package with eight of its LPDDR5 chips.

Kawhi Leonard trade rumors: An updated list of teams that inquired Kawhi Leonard trade rumors: An updated list of teams that inquired Leonard's contract expires following next season, making him one of the biggest targets in the 2019 free-agent class. The Raptors are emerging as a likely destination for the Spurs star, according to ESPN's Brian Windhorst .

Iraqi protesters withdraw from Najaf airport, air traffic resumes Iraqi protesters withdraw from Najaf airport, air traffic resumes At a time of neglect, a storm of discontent is brewing among the people in Iraq's southern provinces, from Baghdad to Basra. He called on all the concerned authorities to remain vigilant and closely follow up developments in this regard.

Papa John's John Schnatter denies being racist Papa John's John Schnatter denies being racist The board made a decision to kick him out of his office at Papa John's headquarters in Louisville, Kentucky. John Schnatter is being excommunicated from Papa John's, the crappy pizza chain he founded 34 years ago.

New QUEEN Biopic "Bohemian Rhapsody" Trailer Shows Freddie Mercury's Highs and Lows New QUEEN Biopic The trailer also features a number of stage performances, looks at Mercury's love life and hints at the singer's death in 1991. Queen's Brian May and Roger Taylor are producing the film's music.

Barcelona advised by a former player to sign a Premier League star Barcelona advised by a former player to sign a Premier League star With the Italian midfielder inbound, Chelsea could decide to bolster their transfer budget by selling Kante to the highest bidder. Kante has picked up two Premier League titles, a PFA Player of the Year award and an FA Cup since moving to England in 2015.

Crazy Kenyans Pictured Lining Up For a Hug From Croatian President Crazy Kenyans Pictured Lining Up For a Hug From Croatian President She's shown good sportsmanship so far today, but she is obviously hoping her team crushes all of France in the second half. The first came back in 1998 - Didier Deschamps , who is now the head coach , was a squad player at the time.

Amazon’s Prime Day Gets Off To Less Than ‘Epic’ Start Amazon’s Prime Day Gets Off To Less Than ‘Epic’ Start Amazon says it's working to resolve the glitches on its website that kept shoppers from buying on its much-hyped Prime Day . Amazon Dash Buttons are another great way to get the most out of your Prime membership- and make your life more convenient.

The CW Developing Batwoman TV Series With Lesbian Superhero Lead Batwoman first appeared in print in the early days of Detective Comics but was later ditched, making her grand revival in 2006. On TV, Batwoman first appeared in animated series Batman: The Brave and the Bold , which premiered on Cartoon Network in 2008.

Astronomers Serendipitously Discover 12 Moons Around Jupiter But Valetudo, in addition to being the smallest discovered , orbits in prograde, or the same direction as the planet's spin. This is in contrast to other Jupiter moons such as Ganymede - the biggest in the solar system with a diameter of 5,268km.

Uber rolls out new colour-coded windshield pickup signal Uber rolls out new colour-coded windshield pickup signal Rider messages are then read aloud to the driver while they are en route, to ensure they can stay focused on the road. Uber didn't specify when the new features would be available, but an update is now rolling out in the Play Store.

Theresa May ‘scrapes through’ vote on customs bill Theresa May ‘scrapes through’ vote on customs bill She said that would remove Britain's ability to have an independent trade policy and her government "will never stand for that". Discussing the Prime Minister's Chequers plan for Brexit she said: "I don't think it can work".

County Fire contained after burning 91,000 acres; Klamathon Fire crews make progress County Fire contained after burning 91,000 acres; Klamathon Fire crews make progress He was part of the Cal Fire unit that was assisting Sierra National Forest crews, Cal Fire Unit Chief Nancy Koerperich said. Those fires are both now 90 percent contained, but a series of other small fires has popped up across the state.

French fans give hero welcome to 'Les Bleus' World Cup champions French fans give hero welcome to 'Les Bleus' World Cup champions Fans went wild the moment France clinched the World Cup championship, and the country's President was no exception . The team is due to return home later this afternoon after a night of celebrations in Moscow.

President Trump, Russian President Putin Hold Joint News Conference Following Summit President Trump, Russian President Putin Hold Joint News Conference Following Summit The Russian leader said: "It's good that the gradual resolution of the problem of the Korean peninsula has begun". Mr Putin said he and Mr Trump have agreed to continue detailed discussions on arms control issues.