The Azerbaijan State News Agency

WORLD

3 tiny new moons found around Uranus and Neptune — and one is exceptionally tiny

3 tiny new moons found around Uranus and Neptune — and one is exceptionally tiny

Baku, February 24, AZERTAC

Astronomers have discovered two tiny moons orbiting Neptune and one circling Uranus, bringing the number of their known moons to 16 and 28 respectively, according to Space.com.

Uranus' new moon, the first detected around the ice giant in over two decades and possibly the smallest of its ilk, is just 5 miles (8 kilometers) wide; it takes 680 days to complete one orbit around Uranus. In comparison, one Mars' moons named Deimos, considered to be among the tiniest known moons in our solar system, is 8 miles (13 km) wide.

The new moon of the blue-green planet is currently referred to as "S/2023 U1" while it awaits being named for a Shakespearean character, according to a statement by Carnegie Institution for Science (or Carnegie Science).

The brighter of Neptune's two new moons is provisionally named "S/2002 N5." At 14 miles (23 km) wide, this newly discovered satellite seems to be in a 9-year orbit around Neptune. The fainter moon, currently assigned the name "S/2021 N1," is 8.6 miles wide (14 km) and circles Neptune once every 27 years. Both Neptunian moons will be assigned permanent names based on sea gods and nymphs in Greek mythology.

The three new moons were announced Friday (Feb. 23) by the International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center, a Massachusetts-based scientific body responsible for designating planets, comets and moons in our solar system.

The discovery was made using observatories in Hawaii and Chile by Scott Sheppard, a staff scientist at Carnegie Science, in collaboration with Marina Brozovic and Bob Jacobson of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), David Tholen of the University of Hawaii, Chad Trujillo of Northern Arizona University and Patryk Sofia Lykawa of Kindai University.

The new moons are "the faintest ever found around these two ice giant planets using ground-based telescopes," Sheppard said in Friday's statement. "It took special image processing to reveal such faint objects."

He first detected the new Uranian moon in November of last year while using Chile's Magellan telescopes. A month later, follow up observations combined with JPL scientists' predictions of a possible orbit for the new moon confirmed the find.

The two new residents in Neptune's moon system were first seen in September 2021. After the orbit of the brighter of the two natural satellites, S/2002 N5, was confirmed, "it was traced back to an object that was spotted near Neptune in 2003 but lost before it could be confirmed as orbiting the planet," said Sheppard.

Determining the orbit of the fainter Neptunian moon "required special observing time under ultra-pristine conditions" with Europe's Very Large Telescope in Chile and Gemini Observatory in Hawaii, according to the statement.

Using these telescopes, Sheppard and colleagues clicked a series of five-minute exposures over three-to four-hour periods. These short-burst images were later “layered” such that the three newfound moons came into clearer view.

All three moons have egg-shaped orbits highly inclined to the plane of their respective ice giants. This implies they did not birth around their host planet but were instead gravitationally seized later on.

Share news on social media

Follow us on social network

Azerbaijani FM meets with President of Uzbekistan

Geneva hosts International Day of Nowruz

Canton Fair opens in China with surge in overseas purchasers

Turkish foreign minister, UN chief discuss recent regional developments

ANAMA highlights Azerbaijan's mine action efforts in liberated territories

Nadal confirms comeback at Barcelona Open, to face Cobolli

Seventeen in hospital after football fans’ minibus crashes in West Yorkshire

® Baku Steel Company CJSC represents Azerbaijan in Dusseldorf

® Kapital Bank introduces exciting “50 gün 50 hədiyyə” (“50 days 50 gifts”) lottery

Bulgaria to host European, Balkan Cups in whitewater rafting in April

Academician Zarifa Aliyeva commemorated in Ukraine

Azerbaijan, Oman explore prospects for bilateral relations

BHOS hosts meeting with students and graduates selected to participate in SOCAR's ‘Young Talents’ program

ANAMA: 725 unexploded ordnances neutralized over past week

US forces intercepted more than 80 attack drones and at least 6 ballistic missiles from Iran and Yemen, says Central Command

UN Youth Climate Champion outlines measures to ensure young people's involvement in global processes

Azerbaijani taekwondo fighters claim two medals in Belgrade

Azerbaijani female gymnasts claim seven golds in Bishkek tournament

Azerbaijan’s population hits 10,187 million

COP29 Presidency holds first press conference

12 killed in weather-related accidents in Oman

Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum Pipeline accounted for over 50.1 percent of Azerbaijan’s gas transportation

Jeyhun Bayramov: Armenia must reciprocate Azerbaijan's efforts towards peace and construction in the region

BTC pipeline transports over 9 million tons of oil in January-March 2024

Azerbaijan’s Energy Minister to attend Green Hydrogen Summit and 14th Session of Irena Assembly

‘Main topics of COP29 negotiations are under comprehensive discussion with all parties’

Over 15,600 residential buildings in Russia affected by floods

Apple loses top phonemaker spot to Samsung as iPhone shipments drop, IDC says

® Azercell continues to support “Youth Can!" project

COP29 website set to launch this week

Azerbaijan unveils COP29 logo

President Ilham Aliyev extends congratulations to President-elect of Slovakia Peter Pellegrini

To His Excellency Mr. Peter Pellegrini, President-elect of the Slovak Republic

COP29 President-Designate: The green transition is among Azerbaijan's national priorities VIDEO

Baku Stadium chosen as the venue for COP29 VIDEO

30 killed in rain-related incidents in Pakistan VIDEO

Self-driving cars safety project launched

COP29 CEO: Whole world will focus its attention on Baku in November this year VIDEO

3 killed in Mexico helicopter crash

Magnitude 3.2 quake jolts Azerbaijan’s Imishli district

Boxer Omar Aslanli seals Azerbaijan`s another gold at European Championships

Azerbaijani FM holds meeting with Uzbek counterpart

Azerbaijani judo team triumphs at Berlin Cadet European Cup 2024

Global oil prices drop

Aston Villa shock Arsenal, allow Manchester City stay on top of English Premier League

Udinese vs. Roma match in Italy abandoned after player collapses

Bayer Leverkusen win first-ever German Bundesliga title

Azerbaijani boxer claims European crown

Azerbaijan Defense Minister meets with the King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan embarks on working visit to Uzbekistan

Azerbaijan women’s 3x3 national basketball team qualifies for Paris 2024 Summer Olympics

Azerbaijani Minister of Defense pays official visit to Jordan

Azerbaijan Army holds seminars on gender equality

Meloni: "The birth rate is a priority of the government, the rented uterus becomes a universal crime"

Biden reaffirms Israel support after Iran attack

UK climate change minister Graham Stuart resigns

Türkiye's famous film studio where historical series are filmed, opens its doors

Azerbaijani FM meets with candidate for UNESCO director general post

Georgian Parliament Speaker, Kazakh President discuss cooperation

Spanish midfielder Luis Alberto: ‘I have asked to leave Lazio’

Death toll from Italian hydroelectric plant explosion rises to 7 as the last bodies are recovered

Swiss university develops hopping robot to explore asteroids

Formula 1 Azerbaijan Grand Prix 2025 date announced

At least 13 people are killed and an estimated 15,000 displaced by flooding in Kenya

China's foreign trade up 5 pct in Q1, hits new records

UN hosts joint briefing on 6th World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue

Azerbaijani servicemen's combat and moral-psychological training is at high level, Defense Ministry

98 stranded midair rescued after cable car accident in southern Türkiye

Azerbaijani oil price exceeds 94 dollars

EU is Azerbaijan’s biggest supporter when it comes to de-mining, says EU committee chair

Oil prices go up in global markets

Azerbaijani gymnast clinches gold in Kyrgyzstan

EU committee chairperson: Time has come for concrete steps to ensure peace and stability in the region

Azerbaijan Army positions once again subjected to fire, Defense Ministry

Slovenian edition: There is a historic opportunity for the establishment of lasting peace

Representative of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan on special assignments pays working visit to Slovenia

Azerbaijani Foreign Minister briefs his Tajik counterpart on the preparations for COP29

Azerbaijan Army positions subjected to fire

Ganja declared CIS sports capital in 2025

Foreign Ministry: Armenia continues to harm biodiversity and living nature of Azerbaijan

First formal proceedings in Azerbaijan’s claim within inter-state arbitration held in Hague

Russia sends its military instructors to Niger — national TV

Azerbaijani and Belarusian FMs discuss bilateral relations

Atalanta stun Liverpool 3-0 at Anfield

Sergey Markov: US and EU seek to destabilize the situation in the South Caucasus

Ukrainian parliament passes bill tightening rules of mobilization

Aston Villa beat Lille in their Europa Conference League quarter-final first leg match

Aida Mahmudova's personal exhibition "A Dream Unfolds" at Vision Art Platform

Fenerbahce suffer 3-2 loss to Olympiacos in Conference League

Yen falls to 153 level against dollar for first time in nearly 34 years

Western Azerbaijan Community appeals to US government regarding Ambassador Kristina Kvien's statement

Azerbaijani servicemen’s leisure time is organized at a high level, Defense Ministry

We support position of brotherly, friendly, allied countries, especially Northern Cyprus and Azerbaijan, says Turkish defense minister

Britain announces Indo-Pacific military exercises with US, Japan

Meta introduces new artificial intelligence training chip

Georgian PM to meet Chancellor, other officials in Germany visit

Azerbaijani rhythmic gymnasts to compete in international tournament

Europa League: AC Milan to face Roma in quarter-finals

Over 3,600 courtyards, 2,000 households flooded in Russia’s Orenburg

Azerbaijan Land Forces hold paramilitary cross championship