Giant Jupiter, with its 79 moons, is king of the planets

Jun 16, 2021, 2:00 PM
This composite image provided by NASA on June 30, 2016, illustrates auroras on the planet Jupiter. ...
This composite image provided by NASA on June 30, 2016, illustrates auroras on the planet Jupiter. This view was produced by NASA using a photograph made by the Hubble Space Telescope in spring 2014, and ultraviolet observations of the auroras in 2016. Earth’s polar lights are triggered by solar storms, which occur when a cloud of gas from the sun encounters the planet’s magnetic field. Jupiter’s powerful auroras are sparked by the planet’s own rotation. (NASA/ESA/Hubble via AP)
(NASA/ESA/Hubble via AP)

Jupiter is the king of the planets!

Did you know that Jupiter has some two and a half times the mass of all the other planets in the solar system? With a diameter of some 88,000 miles, Jupiter is a gas giant that dwarfs Earth.

We are lucky to have a planet such as Jupiter in the solar system, as it performs a major task by clearing the solar system of many unwanted asteroids and comets, which might be headed towards Earth.

Jupiter has 79 known moons — the most of any planet in the solar system — and more are expected to be discovered by the Juno spacecraft.

Juno is a most amazing spacecraft.

There are three main moon groups, the first being the four primary Jovian satellites. They were discovered by Galileo on Jan. 7, 1610, with his low-powered telescope.

He named them Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto after the many lovers of the Roman god Jupiter.

The second, called the inner group, is made up of small moons and the third, referred to as the irregular satellites, orbit in distant and eccentric orbits.

Modern spacecraft tell us that these moons are rather large by scale and at least one Jovian moon, Ganymede, is actually larger than the planet Mercury.

If you are looking for a location in the solar system that might harbor some type of life, look no further than Europa.

Scientists tell us that below the ice of Europa, there might be large oceans of liquid, which might support some type of primitive life.

Arizona observers have a great opportunity to see Jupiter.

Look to the morning sky, just before dawn, when the planet is high in the southern sky and easy to see with the naked eye.

You can actually see the four Jovian moons in a pair of binoculars – if you hold them steady – but you can get better views of Jupiter in the telescope.


Dr. Sky Blog

(Pexels Photo)...
Steve Kates

Grab your binoculars to take a peek at nova in Arizona skies

In the most basic of all explanations, a nova is a star that reaches a critical mass, collapses under the pressure of gravity and then explodes.
6 days ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Steve Kates

With monsoon out of the way, October skies offer up amazing sights

October 2021 brings about some of the best that the night sky can offer up.
13 days ago
From left: Scott Bolton and Rick Nybakken during a briefing at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory i...
Steve Kates

Jupiter and its moons will fill the eyes of starwatchers in October

Jupiter, the king of the planets, is the dominant planet in our October skies and it's easy to spot high in the southeastern sky at sunset.
20 days ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Steve Kates

Change of seasons pulls cold, blue elusive Neptune into view

September and October bring us some clear and cooler nights - just what the doctor ordered to view some amazing objects, like Neptune.
27 days ago
(Unsplash Photo)...
Steve Kates

September skies bring autumn’s harvest moon to light

We bring you some exciting news about a most amazing moon known as the harvest moon.
1 month ago
(NASA Photo)...
Steve Kates

Andromeda Galaxy shines as summer makes way for autumn

Deep within the constellation of Andromeda we come to a most interesting object - the great Andromeda Galaxy, or M31 and to some, NGC 224.
1 month ago

Sponsored Articles

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Why fall maintenance is important for your heating system and A/C

It’s easy to ignore your heater and air conditioner when they’re working but the moment something breaks, you will likely regret not keeping up with maintenance. After all, if something goes wrong, you may be stuck with a repair that will take longer and be more expensive than simple maintenance.
Sweet James

Best fall road trips to take on a motorcycle

Autumn in Arizona brings the beauty of color-changing leaves and a relief from summer heat. It’s one of the most pleasant times to explore the outdoors, especially on a motorcycle.
Chris Kennedy

My Special Aflac Duck® taking flight in Arizona

For more than 65 years, Aflac has had the extraordinary opportunity and privilege to help provide peace of mind to individuals who have our supplemental insurance policies.
Giant Jupiter, with its 79 moons, is king of the planets