# Astronomers Discover Record-Breaking 12 New Moons Around Jupiter

We’ve just discovered something incredible – 12 new moons around Jupiter! This brings the total count to an astonishing 92 moons – a record-breaking number for our solar system. In this blog post, we’ll explore why this discovery is so remarkable and why it’s important to learn more about Jupiter’s moons.

## Unveiling the Discovery

The new count of Jupiter’s moons was recently added to a list kept by the International Astronomical Union’s Minor Planet Center. The discovery was made by astronomers using telescopes in Hawaii and Chile in 2021 and 2022, and their orbits were confirmed with follow-up observations.

These newest moons range in size from 0.6 miles to two miles across. Scott Sheppard of the Carnegie Institution, who was part of the team, said he hopes to image one of these outer moons close-up in the near future to better determine their origins.

## Setting a Record

The discovery of these 12 new moons puts Jupiter past Saturn, which has 83 confirmed moons. This makes Jupiter the planet with the most moons in our solar system.

This record-breaking number of moons is believed to be the result of fragments of once bigger moons that collided with one another or with comets or asteroids. Interestingly, Uranus and Neptune are also loaded with small moons, but they’re so distant that it makes moon-spotting even harder.

## Exploring Jupiter’s Moons

In April, the European Space Agency is sending a spacecraft to Jupiter to study the planet and some of its biggest icy moons. And next year, NASA will launch the Europa Clipper to explore Jupiter’s moon of the same name, which could harbor an ocean beneath its frozen crust.

Scott Sheppard, who discovered a slew of moons around Saturn a few years ago and has taken part in 70 moon discoveries so far around Jupiter, expects to keep adding to the lunar tally of both gas giants.

Jupiter’s newly discovered moons have yet to be named. Sheppard said only half of them are big enough – at least one mile across or so – to warrant a name.

## Conclusion

The discovery of 12 new moons around Jupiter is an incredible feat, and one that pushes the boundaries of our knowledge about the solar system. With the launch of the Europa Clipper and the European Space Agency’s mission, we’ll soon learn even more about Jupiter’s moons and the secrets they may hold.

Source: www.latimes.com