Moons are celestial bodies that orbit a space body, such as planets, and can directly or indirectly affect the body they orbit. No moon is the same, and each moon has different characteristics regarding appearance, topography, temperature, and more. Next, check out five of the most fascinating moons in our solar system.
Enceladus is one of Saturn’s many moons. One of the features that most attracts the attention of scientists is the presence of geysers on the surface of its soil, which spew a lot of water and reinforce the theory that there is an ocean below, located underground. If this is true, the presence of liquid water increases the chances of microbial life, which may be able to evolve life forms.
Regarding the topography of the Moon, it is possible to mention a certain ice crust, covering the entire celestial body, in addition to countless cracks, kilometers long, extending along the Earth. It is estimated that the uneven terrain was caused by tectonic activities.
Currently, the scientific consensus is that Jupiter has 92 moons orbiting it and that Ganymede is considered the largest of them all. In fact, Ganymede is so large that it is also considered the largest moon in the entire solar system: the celestial body has a diameter of 5,262 kilometers, and according to the UFRGS Institute of Physics, if it orbited the Sun, it would orbit around the Sun. Maybe it is considered a planet.
In addition to these details, it should be noted that Ganymede has its own magnetic field, which is unusual for a moon or any space body that is not a planet. Moreover, the daytime temperature can reach 77°C, while the night temperature easily reaches -193°C.
Io is another of Jupiter’s moons and offers places with both cold and scorching temperatures. This is because cold regions naturally reach a temperature concentration well below the freezing point; However, hot places provide volcanic activity capable of expelling lava at temperatures exceeding 1200°C. There are at least 12 active volcanoes, and one of them is estimated to develop lava at temperatures of over 1,700 degrees Celsius, which is impressive since it is the closest planet to Earth. The sun, Mercury, does not even reach these high temperatures.
Io’s volcanic eruptions are so important that, according to NASA, it was the first place scientists discovered active volcanoes outside Earth. The presence of volcanic activity on other celestial bodies has already been theorized, but we never had a “contact” with volcanic activity that was occurring at that time.
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Saturn’s moon Dione is certainly one of the most beautiful moons ever observed through telescopes. This is because its thin coating of ice provides a shiny, reflective and crisp appearance. The ice-free sites display extremely rugged terrain and diverse mountain formations, fueling various theories about what may have happened there.
Iapetus, which orbits Saturn, has an appearance unlike any other moon: it is two-colored. Each half of the moon is a different color, which creates great contrast when we look at the image through a telescope. We’re still not sure what’s behind this feature, but we do know that the land is surrounded by sharp mountains.
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