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Home / Science / New Moon discovered the circling Neptune, which illuminates the violent past of the solar system

New Moon discovered the circling Neptune, which illuminates the violent past of the solar system



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By David Freeman

Say hello to Hippocamp, a heavenly pipsqueak that makes big waves at the edge of our solar system. Using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers have confirmed the existence of this tiny moon in orbit around Neptune.

With a diameter of just 20 miles, the newly characterized Moon ̵

1; named after a mythical half-horse, half-fish-creature – is the smallest moon yet discovered in orbit around the outermost planet. NASA says it is about 100 million times weaker than the weakest star visible to the naked eye.

Hippocamp was first seen in Hubble 2013 photos. His presence – near a much larger moon known as Proteus – posed a mystery: why did not Hippocampus grow together or be discarded with Proteus, an irregularly shaped, 260-mile-wide moon that is about 1,000 times massive? been?

Some call themselves S / 2004 N1, as Hippocampus was originally called, "The Moon That Should Not Be There."

But after several years of slaughter – including a fresh look at photos of the Neptune system made by Hubble and the NASA satellite Voyager 2 – astronomers led by Mark Showalter of the SETI Institute – In Mountain View, California , it was discovered that Hippocampus is a piece of Proteus that had been sheared off before the big moon when a comet hit it billions of years ago.


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