PDA

View Full Version : 12 New Moons Discovered Orbiting Saturn



Death and the Sun
Tuesday, May 10th, 2005, 06:39 AM
Astronomers in Hawaii have discovered twelve new moons orbiting Saturn, which brings the total number of moons for the planet to 43. Eleven of the newly discovered moons have retrograde orbits -- they orbit Saturn in the opposite direction the planet revolves in. This suggests Saturn may have "captured" the moons.

http://www.wired.com/news/space/0,2697,67454,00.html?tw=wn_tophead_4

Arcturus
Tuesday, May 10th, 2005, 06:45 AM
Query: I wonder if it would be possible for the earth to 'capture' a new moon. I suppose it would have to be quite small, and move fairly slowly plus approch the earth at a low angle.. Plus, for it to actually stabilize into a constant orbit I suppose all-too many varibales would have to align just right. Well, anything's possible, but the chances must be astonomical.. There is a lot of junk up there, and earth does have a number of small satelite particles, but it would be interesting to know just how large the largest one is at the moment. Apart from man-made ones naturally.

Elendil
Tuesday, June 21st, 2005, 03:33 AM
Wow. I remember ten years ago when Jupiter and Saturn had fewer than 20 known moons. Now it seems they're up into the 40-50 range so far. Or maybe even higher in Jupiter's case... I kinda lost track!