Astronomers have found 12 new moons of Jupiter

© NASA / JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstäd/Seán DoranНовая picture of Jupiter obtained by the probe JunoAstronomers have found 12 new moons of Jupiter© NASA / JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstäd/Seán DoranПодпишись to daily updates RIA Science

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Astronomers have discovered 12 new satellites orbiting Jupiter, thus, their number increased to 79, according to the portal of the research center of Carnegie.

For the first time, a team of scientists of the Carnegie under the guidance of Scott Sheppard noticed satellites in the spring of 2017, when engaged in searching for objects in remote areas of the Solar system, including the search for the Ninth planet, a hypothetical massive planet beyond the orbit of Pluto.

«Jupiter was in the space where we searched for objects in the far regions of the Solar system, so we, by luck, discovered new satellites around Jupiter, trying to find a planet on the edge of the Solar system,» said Sheppard.

According to the scientist of the minor planet Center, Gareth Williams, it took him a year of work to confirm that the satellites are actually in orbit around Jupiter.

In this case, 11 of the detected satellites, scientists have considered «normal» and one «special».

A large portion of the detected satellites are in a cluster of retrograde satellites, which make a full rotation in the direction opposite to Jupiter every two years.

It is believed that they were formed by a similar collision of a large cosmic bodies with asteroids, comets and other satellites.

Two satellites are closest and make prohladnyi circulation in the direction of rotation of Jupiter about once a year. They are also considered as fragments of the huge satellite, once broken into pieces.

The most unusual discovery was the companion of Valetudo, unlike any other moon of Jupiter. This very small satellite, less than a kilometer in diameter, is then rejected and stronger than other satellites of the planets. Thus, unlike other programnyj satellites, it has a orbit that crosses the retrograde satellites, which makes the likelihood of their collision.

Found satellites can help scientists to study the early stage of development of the Solar system.

All observations were conducted with the participation of scientists of the National optical astronomy Observatory the US to Chile using the four-meter Blanco telescope.