A competition that is becoming increasingly close: a few years ago Saturn became – as well as the lord of the rings – also the “lord of the satellites”, as a study had found new ones. Now the tables have turned: new research has brought to light ben 12 other satellites around Jupiter.
Our Solar System’s largest gas giant now has ben 92 orbiting moons, surpassing Saturn’s impressive 83 bodies. Actually the truth is another: both celestial bodies they could have many more orbiting objectsbut identifying them is not easy for several reasons.
Aware of all these impediments, such as the lack of a powerful enough telescope, a lack of light and irregular orbits, Dr. Scott Sheppard has spent the last two years following the orbits of 12 new moonswhich have now been officially published by the Minor Planet Center (MPC).
Nine pieces of rock found revolve around the planet retrograde, i.e. in the opposite direction to the inner moons and take at least 550 days to complete. The other two are located in the Himalia group of satellites, which orbits Jupiter at a distance of between 11 and 12 million kilometers, while the last one belongs to the Carpo group, located about 17 million kilometers from the gas giant.
In short, the colossus of our system has the scepter again, but it may not be long before it is surpassed again.