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Jul 16, 2013 9:32 AM by Stephen Bowers

New moon discovered orbiting Neptune

A new moon, which NASA says is being called S/2004 N 1, has been discovered orbiting Neptune. It is the 14th known moon orbiting the blue gaseous planet.

It was discovered July 1 of this year when Mark Showalter of the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California was using Hubble Space Telescope to research segments of rings around Neptune. Showalter looked on a whim beyond the rings he was studying and saw the tiny moon between Larissa and Proteus, two other moons around Neptune.

NASA says the moon is only 12 miles across and about 100 million times fainter than the faintest star we can see with the naked eye. Showalter says the orbit of the ring segments and and moons around Neptune is so fast, they had to find ways to view them so that they could be seen. They viewed the rings and the moon much luck a photographer photograph a runner - so that the runner is in focus and the background blurs.


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