Saturn Reigns Supreme: Reclaims ‘King of Moons’ Title with 62 New Discoveries!

After Jupiter’s brief reign, Saturn takes back the title of most moons with 62 new discoveries.


With an impressive count of 145 natural satellites, Saturn reigns as the undisputed “King of Moons” in our solar system, surpassing Jupiter’s 92.

A team of international researchers has successfully identified and documented 62 previously undiscovered moons around Saturn. Using the innovative shift and stack technique, commonly employed in moon searches around other planets like Neptune and Uranus, these hidden objects were unveiled within Saturn’s celestial vicinity.

The University of British Columbia researchers have revealed a technique that involves shifting sequential images to enhance the signal of the moon as it moves across the sky. By combining the data from these shifted images, previously imperceptible moons that were too faint to be seen individually can now be detected and become visible.

Challenging Puzzle: Tracking and Connecting Moons

Edward Ashton, a postdoctoral fellow at Taiwan’s Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics, reflected on the process of tracking these moons, comparing it to the childhood game of Dot-to-Dot. He explained, “We have to connect the various appearances of these moons in our data with a viable orbit, but with about 100 different games on the same page, and you don’t know which dot belongs to which puzzle.” Ashton’s analogy highlights the complexity and challenge involved in identifying and assigning orbits to the newly discovered moons.

The discovery process initiated in 2019 and extended over multiple years to confirm the nature of these objects as moons within Saturn’s rings, distinguishing them from asteroids.

Saturn’s Irregular Moons: Characteristics and Count

The recently discovered moons belong to the category of irregular moons, believed to have been captured by Saturn. These moons exhibit distinct characteristics such as large, elliptical, and inclined orbits, distinguishing them from regular moons. This discovery has significantly increased the tally of Saturn’s irregular moons, with the count reaching 121, including 58 that were known prior to the recent search.

Saturn Reigns: Surpasses 100 Moon Milestone

Saturn’s remarkable achievement goes beyond reclaiming the title of the planet with the most known moons. It has now become the first planet in our solar system to boast a remarkable count of over 100 moons, further solidifying its status as a celestial body with a vast array of natural satellites.


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