Neptune Has A Newly-Discovered Moon

neptune's new moonThis composite Hubble Space Telescope picture shows the location of a newly discovered moon, designated S/2004 N 1, orbiting the giant planet Neptune, nearly 3 billion miles from Earth.

Neptune, the eighth and farthest planet from our Sun, now has 14 moons. NASA just announced the latest edition to the planet’s lunar menagerie after analysing images and data from the Hubble telescope.

The new moon is currently being called S/2004 N 1 and is no more than 12 miles across — the smallest that researchers have ever found around Neptune. When seen from Earth it is 100 million times fainter than the faintest star humans can see.

planet neptune's moonsThis diagram shows the orbits of several moons located close to the planet Neptune.

The new moon has shown up in more than 150 shots from the Hubble telescope taken between 2004 and 2009. It seems to be about 65,400 miles from the planet, between its two other moons — Larissa and Proteus. Many of Neptune’s moons were discovered by Voyager 2 in 1989 when it passed by the planet, but this tiny addition was missed.

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