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moons

uranus life

Are there aliens hiding around Uranus?

December 26th, 2020

We have yet to find evidence of life outside of Earth, but it may still be hiding within our own solar system. Scientists say that the ingredients for life may exist on some of the moons in our system, including the icy worlds that orbit Uranus. If alien life does exist there, it is likely …

jupiter moons

Jupiter’s moons are warmer than they should be, but why?

September 11th, 2020

New research shows that Jupiter’s moons may be keeping each other warm thanks to the effects of gravity. The tidal forces each moon applies to the others are keeping them warmer than they would otherwise be. Jupiter’s moon Europa has a subsurface ocean that may hold life. Jupiter is well known for being the might, …

mars rings

Did Mars once have rings? Scientists say it’s possible

June 3rd, 2020

Mars may have once had rings, and researchers say the evidence may still be orbiting the planet today. Phobos, the tiny Martian moon, may have once been much larger, slowly getting closer to Mars until it was torn to shreds and formed a ring of dust and debris. That ring may have then coalesced into …

space news

Neptune’s moons are ‘dancing,’ and it’s so cool

November 17th, 2019

Earth has just one Moon, which makes it pretty simple for it to avoid collisions with other large objects since, well, there’s nothing for it to collide with. Other moons don’t have it nearly so good. Neptune, for example, has over a dozen moons, and for all those tiny worlds to coexist, some interesting patterns …

new saturn moons

Saturn has 20 new moons, and they all need names

October 8th, 2019

Earth’s singular moon has offered astronomers the opportunity to study the relationship between planets and the natural satellites that orbit them. In many ways, Earth’s moon is the perfect introduction to teach humanity some very basic things about how the universe works. There’s no civilization living on the ringed gas giant Saturn, of course, but …

ploonets

Moons that escape their planets are now called ‘ploonets’

July 11th, 2019

Late last year, astronomers decided that moons which orbit other moons should get their own special name. The label “moon-moon” was offered — and promptly ridiculed because of how silly it sounds — but the name appears to have stuck, for better or worse. With that problem solved, some have turned their attention to another …

ultima thule moons

Does Ultima Thule have moons? Scientists want to know

January 4th, 2019

NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft sped past the peculiar asteroid binary known as Ultima Thule on New Year’s Day, and it collected an incredible amount of data. In its first transmission to Earth after passing its target New Horizons told its handlers that it had filled its on-board data storage to the brim. Now, as NASA …

phobos grooves

New study reveals secrets of Mars’ strangest moon, Phobos

November 21st, 2018

Of all the moons in our solar system, the Martian moon of Phobos might be the most interesting. It’s not a near-perfect sphere like most of the moons we see, and it almost looks like an overgrown asteroid just kind of hanging out in orbit around the Red Planet. It’s also covered in craters and …

Jupiter Moons

Astronomers accidentally discover a dozen new moons around Jupiter

July 17th, 2018

Astronomers oftentimes have to look very, very carefully for something that they believe exists in a certain spot in space. Whether that be an exoplanet orbiting a distant star or perhaps a still-unseen planet lurking at the edge of the Solar System, it’s a challenging endeavor. But every so often, the planets seem to align …