So far, astronomers have discovered 82 moons around Saturn, while only 79 satellites have been spotted around Jupiter. These eight moons have prograde motion and orbit relatively near to Jupiter. The Galilean satellites are nearly spherical in shape due to their planetary mass, and so would be considered at least dwarf planets if they were in direct orbit around the Sun. Though the Galilean … These 79 moons are mentioned here in order of increasing the distance from Jupiter. Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto-the so-called Galilean satellites-were seen by the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager on the New Horizons spacecraft during its flyby of Jupiter in late February 2007. This brings the ringed planet's total number of moons to 82, surpassing Jupiter, which has 79. Discovered by Stephen Synnott through images taken by the Voyager 1 in 1979, Metis is the closest moon to Jupiter. Despite the fact that Jupiter has a number of approximately 63 named satellites, only four of them are generally referred to as the planet's moons. [11] No additional satellites were discovered until E. E. Barnard observed Amalthea in 1892. Though there are 79 known moons of Jupiter, but currently some of Jupiter’s moons are lost (currently 7 satellites are lost). lo, a Volcanic Moon. Required fields are marked *. In 2016, the Juno spacecraft imaged the Galilean moons from above their orbital plane as it approached Jupiter orbit insertion, creating a time-lapse movie of their motion.[54]. [53] The Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 probes visited Jupiter in 1979, discovering the volcanic activity on Io and the presence of water ice on the surface of Europa. Which planets have moons, and which don’t? This means Jupiter has at least 79 moons, the highest number of any planet in our solar system. These irregular satellites of Jupiter have high eccentricity with their prograde and retrograde motion and have much inclination to Jupiter’s plane. The astronomical literature instead simply referred to "Jupiter I", "Jupiter II", etc., or "the first satellite of Jupiter", "Jupiter's second satellite", and so on. Later, a large number of small companions have been found, a total of 67 with the 2012 addition. They will present their findings on September 25th at the virtual Europlanet Science Congress 2020. Jupiter IX) in the majority of astronomical literature until the 1970s. [7], Chinese historian Xi Zezong claimed that the earliest record of a Jovian moon (Ganymede or Callisto) was a note by Chinese astronomer Gan De of an observation around 364 BC regarding a "reddish star". Other bodies in the solar system, such as dwarf planets, asteroids, and Kuiper belt objects,… Jupiter also has the biggest moon in our solar system, Ganymede. The ringed planet was earlier thought to have 62 moons. These have prograde and nearly circular orbits of low inclination and are split into two groups: The irregular satellites are substantially smaller objects with more distant and eccentric orbits. During this period, Galileo gathered a large amount of information about the Jovian system, making close approaches to all of the Galilean moons and finding evidence for thin atmospheres on three of them, as well as the possibility of liquid water beneath the surfaces of Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. There are 171 moons, or natural satellites, orbiting the planets in our solar system; Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune have 1, 2, 66, 62, 27, and 13 moons, respectively. [34] In 1975, the International Astronomical Union's (IAU) Task Group for Outer Solar System Nomenclature granted names to satellites V–XIII,[35] and provided for a formal naming process for future satellites still to be discovered. As several moons of Jupiter are currently lost, these orbital elements may be only rough approximations. More ›. [26] Among these is Valetudo, which has a prograde orbit, but crosses paths with several moons that have retrograde orbits, making an eventual collision—at some point on a billions-of-years timescale—likely. The first spacecraft to visit Jupiter were Pioneer 10 in 1973, and Pioneer 11 a year later, taking low-resolution images of the four Galilean moons and returning data on their atmospheres and radiation belts. Diameter: 16.4 3. These moons were probably captured by Jupiter from solar orbits. There are 79 known moons of Jupiter. CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (, Timeline of discovery of Solar System planets and their moons, "A dozen new moons of Jupiter discovered, including one "oddball, "Cannibalistic Jupiter ate its early moons", "Irregular Satellites of the Planets: Products of Capture in the Early Solar System", "The Discovery of Jupiter's Satellite Made by Gan De 2000 years Before Galileo", Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, "Discovery of the Ninth Satellite of Jupiter", "How Many Moons Does Jupiter Have? In the solar system there are 173 moons orbiting the planets. Jupiter has 79 total numbers of moons, in which 26 of them have not been officially named yet. Moons of Jupiter. Jupiter’s Galilean Moons were the first discovered moons after the earth’s moons and were the first known objects to orbit a planet after the earth’s moon. The largest four are called Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. In Jupiter Ascending, a humanoid race live inside Jupiter's atmosphere. 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