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Waspie_Dwarf

Hubble Finds New Neptune Moon [merged]

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NASA Hubble Finds New Neptune Moon

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has discovered a new moon orbiting the distant blue-green planet Neptune, the 14th known to be circling the giant planet.

The moon, designated S/2004 N 1, is estimated to be no more than 12 miles across, making it the smallest known moon in the Neptunian system. It is so small and dim that it is roughly 100 million times fainter than the faintest star that can be seen with the naked eye. It even escaped detection by NASA's Voyager 2 spacecraft, which flew past Neptune in 1989 and surveyed the planet's system of moons and rings.

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Fascinating stuff. There's still so much we don't know.

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Seems like now a days, just about each day we are finding either new planets or new moons on planets we didn't know they had! Just amazing how fast we are finding stuff now.

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Dont expect to see this new moon with the naked eye...

"The Hubble space telescope has discovered a new moon orbiting Neptune, Nasa has confirmed.

Designated S/2004 N 1, this is the 14th known moon to circle the giant planet.

It also appears to be the smallest moon in the Neptunian system, measuring just 20 km (12 miles) across, completing one revolution around Neptune every 23 hours.

US astronomer Mark Showalter spotted the tiny dot while studying segments of rings around Neptune.

Nasa said the moon was roughly 100 million times dimmer than the faintest star visible to the naked eye".

Link (courtesy BBC): http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23318301

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The newly discovered little moon is an enigma. So small, it should have been swept up into a larger nearby moon during the episode of Triton's capture by Neptune, and the resultant break up and reforming of Neptune's moons. It's unlikely that it was captured later, after the chaos settled down. It has a nearly circular orbit. Captured objects are expected to have eccentric orbits. A pity the object is so distant, it bears closer examination.

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The fact that the sunlight is so dim out by Neptune makes it so hard for us humans to discover new worlds such as this moon, which is so far away. But nowadays, we're discovering them nonetheless. I think it's exciting!

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The fact that the sunlight is so dim out by Neptune makes it so hard for us humans to discover new worlds such as this moon, which is so far away. But nowadays, we're discovering them nonetheless. I think it's exciting!

I agree. I just wonder how many more moons may be out there in both Jupiters and Saturns orbits?

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doubt the discovery is anything useful. even the moon itself is anything useful

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Posted (edited)

We might use it to learn how a tiny moon can defy the odds heavily against its survival, under the conditions this one is believed to have endured. Failing that, we might use this object to learn that it is not possible for a wholly natural object to have survived under these circumstances.

Edited by bison

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We might use it to learn how a tiny moon can defy the odds heavily against its survival, under the conditions this one is believed to have endured.

Probably.

Failing that, we might use this object to learn that it is not possible for a wholly natural object to have survived under these circumstances.

We might learn that "we don't fully understand therefore it must be artificial alien artefact" is an illogical jump, but most of us know that already.

If you want to suggest an alien origin for this moon please don't spend weeks slowly hijacking this topic, start a new one in the appropriate forum. Thank you.

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The newly discovered little moon is an enigma. So small, it should have been swept up into a larger nearby moon during the episode of Triton's capture by Neptune, and the resultant break up and reforming of Neptune's moons. It's unlikely that it was captured later, after the chaos settled down. It has a nearly circular orbit. Captured objects are expected to have eccentric orbits. A pity the object is so distant, it bears closer examination.

There's a general enigma I believe in that 'shepherding moons' give a "gravitational kick" to one another and surrounding dust rings. Just from memory and a Prof Brian Cox programme of course. He didn't explain where the "extra" came from though..

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Posted (edited)

There's a general enigma I believe in that 'shepherding moons' give a "gravitational kick" to one another and surrounding dust rings. Just from memory and a Prof Brian Cox programme of course. He didn't explain where the "extra" came from though..

S/2004 N 1 is at about twice the distance from Neptune that it rings are, so is not a shepherding moon. it is quite close to being in orbital resonances with its neighboring moons, Larissa and Proteus. Edited by bison

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I got this in an email today. Not pertaining to neptune, but interesting.

So why post it in a thread about Neptune?

May be worth posting.

It is, which is why there is already a thread about it: Snow in an Infant Planetary System

Something I don't think I can do.

http://www.laborator...680011&type=cta

You don't think you can post it despite the fact that you posted it. That has me more than a little puzzled.

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It is amazing that bit by bit our knowledge of our solar system is being slowly rewritten as we discover more.

THIS is what I like seeing our resources channeled towards. Discovering things, not more wars.

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Waspie - I meant posting the story as a thread. I know I can post a link. Like the Neptune thread.

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Waspie - I meant posting the story as a thread. I know I can post a link. Like the Neptune thread.

You should be able to do that, but nor whilst you are in another topic. Simply go to the relevant forum and towards the top of the page there should be a black button that says "Start new topic". Then post exactly as you would in an existing topic. The only real difference is that you have to fill in the topic title.

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Posted (edited)

S/2004 N 1 is at about twice the distance from Neptune that it rings are, so is not a shepherding moon. it is quite close to being in orbital resonances with its neighboring moons, Larissa and Proteus.

Have you heard the phrase "gravitational kick" before in reference to shepherding moons? If so, can you please explain it to me please. Edited by NatureBoff

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Very cool find. The Hubble is the greatest thing ever made

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It is amazing that bit by bit our knowledge of our solar system is being slowly rewritten as we discover more.

THIS is what I like seeing our resources channeled towards. Discovering things, not more wars.

It is truly amazing what our probes, that so many have complained about since they aren't manned, are baring so much fruit. Personally, as a man born in the 50's, I am in awe of the discoveries we have made with the incredible instruments NASA has put into space. If the Webb makes it, it will change everything. I guarantee that. Hubble is amazing and the rescue mission was an absolute heroic achievement at the the time. Curiosity on Mars kept me up until 3Am and I knew she had made it. What a mission and she has already exceeded her mission objectives, achieved all her goals and is now motoring on.

When the Webb goes operational we will see a whole new universe.

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Found a better pic of it:

death-star-1.jpg

That's no moon...

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Very cool find. The Hubble is the greatest thing ever made

Totally Agree...

Check out this doco if you haven't and see how it was very nearly a huge disaster!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kzuwiYDwkms

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Have you heard the phrase "gravitational kick" before in reference to shepherding moons? If so, can you please explain it to me please.

The linked article briefly explains the concept, in the context of the Saturn system. Most of this is applicable to shepherding moons in general. In brief, momentum is conserved. It can be transferred from a shepherding moon to ring particles, or to another nearby shepherding moon, when they pass each other in their orbits. http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/news/display.cfm?News_ID=3451

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