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Encyclopedia > Moons of Jupiter
Jupiter's 4 Galilean moons, in a composite image comparing their sizes and the size of Jupiter (Great Red Spot visible). From the top, they are Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto
Jupiter's 4 Galilean moons, in a composite image comparing their sizes and the size of Jupiter (Great Red Spot visible). From the top, they are Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto

The Galilean moons are the four moons of Jupiter discovered by Galileo Galilei. They are by far the largest of the many moons of Jupiter. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1028x1469, 97 KB)Courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1028x1469, 97 KB)Courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 70 kPa Hydrogen ~86% Helium ~14% Methane 0. ... The Great Red Spot is a persistent anticyclonic storm on the planet Jupiter, 22° south of the equator, which has lasted at least 340 years. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Sulfur dioxide 90% Io (eye-oe, IPA: , Greek Ῑώ) is the innermost of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 1 µPa Oxygen 100% Europa (ew-roe-pÉ™, IPA:  ; Greek Ευρώπη) is a moon of the planet Jupiter. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Oxygen 100% Ganymede (gan-É™-meed, IPA: ; Greek Γανυμήδης) is Jupiters largest moon, and indeed the largest moon in the entire solar system; it is larger in diameter than Mercury but only about half its mass. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Carbon dioxide 100% Callisto (kÉ™-lis-toe, IPA: ; Greek Καλλιστώ) is a moon of the planet Jupiter, discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 70 kPa Hydrogen ~86% Helium ~14% Methane 0. ... Galileo Galilei (15 February 1564 – 8 January 1642) was an Italian physicist, astronomer, and philosopher who is closely associated with the scientific revolution. ...

Contents

Visibility

The Galilean moons are visible from Earth with a small telescope or binoculars. In fact, if the observing conditions are sufficient, it is possible to see Ganymede with the naked eye. At their closest distance to Earth, the moons have magnitudes of 4.6 (Ganymede) to 5.6 (Callisto). Io at its apsis is separated from Jupiter by about two arc minutes. It is theoretically possible that dedicated and well-trained observers could see the moons with the naked eye, but there is no evidence that this has ever been achieved. 50 cm refracting telescope at Nice Observatory. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Oxygen 100% Ganymede (gan-ə-meed, IPA: ; Greek Γανυμήδης) is Jupiters largest moon, and indeed the largest moon in the entire solar system; it is larger in diameter than Mercury but only about half its mass. ... In science, a magnitude is the numerical size of something: see orders of magnitude. ... A minute of arc, arcminute, or MOA is a unit of angular measurement, equal to one sixtieth (1/60) of one degree. ...


Discovery

The Galilean moons were first observed by Galileo on January 7, 1610. A Chinese historian of astronomy, Xi Zezong, has claimed that Gan De, a Chinese astronomer, may have seen Ganymede in 362 BC, nearly 2 millennia earlier[1]. January 7 is the seventh day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... // Events January 7 - Galileo Galilei discovers the Galilean moons of Jupiter. ... Gan De (c. ... Centuries: 5th century BC - 4th century BC - 3rd century BC Decades: 410s BC 400s BC 390s BC 380s BC 370s BC 360s BC 350s BC 340s BC 330s BC 320s BC 310s BC 367 BC 366 BC 365 BC 364 BC 363 BC 362 BC 361 BC 360 BC 359...


Galileo observed the moons' motion over several days and realized that they were in orbit around Jupiter. This discovery supported the heliocentric theory of Nicolaus Copernicus and showed that not everything in the heavens revolves around Earth. Heliocentric Solar System Heliocentrism (lower panel) in comparsion to the geocentric model (upper panel) In astronomy, heliocentrism is the belief that the Sun is at the center of the Universe and/or the Solar System. ... Nicolaus Copernicus (February 19, 1473 – May 24, 1543) was an astronomer who provided the first modern formulation of a heliocentric (sun-centered) theory of the solar system in his epochal book, De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres). ... Earth (IPA: , often referred to as the Earth, Terra, the World or Planet Earth) is the third planet in the solar system in terms of distance from the Sun, and the fifth largest. ...


Name

Galileo initially called his discovery the Cosmica Sidera ("Cosimo's stars", in honour of Cosimo II de' Medici (15901621), grand-duke of Tuscany from 1609, whose patronage he wanted to secure. At the grand-duke's suggestion, Galileo changed the name to Medicea Sidera ("the Medician stars"), honouring all four Medici brothers (Cosimo, Francesco, Carlo, and Lorenzo). The discovery was announced in the Sidereus Nuncius ("Starry Messenger"), published in Venice in March 1610, less than two months after the first observations. Cosimo II de Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany (12 May 1590 – 28 February 1621) ruled as Grand Duke of Tuscany from 1609 to 1621. ... Bold text{| align=right cellpadding=3 id=toc style=margin-left: 15px; |- | align=center colspan=2 | Years: 1587 1588 1589 - 1590 - 1591 1592 1593 |-vdsf gno[gldw[pvkijxaiamknn csogfhbvdowkhbfkqhjkhrjkhwgfhbjkpnkfokfgok3pkpk9pjhkt9erktyujkip9kijker9thhrkg9hkitr9gtkih9t0ykltk[u0jo0iey9uhyit90ertyhige9rity9riyh9ujirtyuhjnh-4e9tyigh9thiuy0h8tyh34tu8uy8u8u8u8rtu5y8ru8thu0tru0ut0rhutuh0trhu0hseogtrhr8uyhju8t89er9te9r8fy8shit ass dick bitch fuck | align=center colspan=2 | Decades: 1560s 1570s 1580s - 1590s - 1600s 1610s 1620s |- | align=center | Centuries... Events February 9 - Gregory XV is elected pope. ... A flowered corn field in Tuscany. ... // Events April 4 – King of Spain signs an edit of expulsion of all moriscos from Spain April 9 – Spain recognizes Dutch independence May 23 - Official ratification of the Second Charter of Virginia. ... Carlo de Medici (March 19, 1595–June 17, 1666) was the son of Ferdinando I de Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany and Chrétienne de Lorraine. ... Sidereus Nuncius (usually translated into English as Sidereal Messenger, although Starry Messenger and Sidereal Message are also seen) is a short treatise published in Latin by Galileo Galilei in March 1610. ... Venice (Italian: Venezia, Venetian: Venexia) is the capital of the region of Veneto and the province of the same name in Italy. ... // Events January 7 - Galileo Galilei discovers the Galilean moons of Jupiter. ...


Other names put forward include 'Principharus, Victipharus, Cosmipharus and Ferdinandipharus', for each of the four Medici brothers, proposed by Giovanni Batista Hodierna, a disciple of Galileo and author of the first ephemerides (Medicaeorum Ephemerides, 1656). Johannes Hevelius called the moons the 'Circulatores Jovis' or 'Jovis Comites', and Jacques Ozanam called them 'Gardes' or 'Satellites' (from the Latin satelles, satellitis, meaning "escorts"). Giovanni Batista Hodierna (1597-1660) was an astronomer at the court of the Duke of Montechiaro. ... // Events Mehmed Köprülü becomes Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire. ... Johannes Hevelius Johannes Hevelius (Latin), also called (in German) Johann Hewelke or Johannes Hewel, or Jan Heweliusz (Polish), (born January 28, 1611 – died January 28, 1687), was a Polish [[1]], [[2]], [[3]], [[4]], councillor and mayor in Gdańsk. ... Jacques Ozanam (1640 - April 3, 1717) was a French mathematician. ...


The names that eventually prevailed were chosen by Simon Marius, who claimed to have discovered the moons at the same time as Galileo: he named them after lovers of the god Jupiter: Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto, in his Mundus Jovialis, published in 1614. Simon Marius Simon Marius (January 10, 1573 – December 26, 1624) was a German astronomer. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Sulfur dioxide 90% Io (eye-oe, IPA: , Greek Ῑώ) is the innermost of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 1 µPa Oxygen 100% Europa (ew-roe-pÉ™, IPA:  ; Greek Ευρώπη) is a moon of the planet Jupiter. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Oxygen 100% Ganymede (gan-É™-meed, IPA: ; Greek Γανυμήδης) is Jupiters largest moon, and indeed the largest moon in the entire solar system; it is larger in diameter than Mercury but only about half its mass. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Carbon dioxide 100% Callisto (kÉ™-lis-toe, IPA: ; Greek Καλλιστώ) is a moon of the planet Jupiter, discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei. ... Events April 5 - In Virginia, Native American Pocahontas marries English colonist John Rolfe. ...


Galileo steadfastly refused to use Marius's names and invented as a result the numbering scheme that is still used nowadays, in parallel with proper moon names. The numbers run from Jupiter outward, thus I, II, III and IV for Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto respectively. Galileo used this system in his notebooks but never actually published it.


The Galilean moons are, in order from closest to Jupiter to farthest away:

Name Image Interior
structure
Diameter
(km)
Mass
(kg)
Semi-major
axis (km)
Orbital
period (days)
Io 3643 8.93×1022 421,800 1.77
Europa 3122 4.8×1022 671,100 3.55
Ganymede 5262 1.48×1023 1,070,400 7.16
Callisto 4821 1.08×1023 1,882,700 16.69

Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Sulfur dioxide 90% Io (eye-oe, IPA: , Greek Ῑώ) is the innermost of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2666x2000, 566 KB) Interior of Io original description: Cutaway view of the possible internal structure of Io The surface of the satellite is a mosaic of images obtained in 1979 by NASAs Voyager spacecraft The interior characteristics are inferred from... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 1 µPa Oxygen 100% Europa (ew-roe-pÉ™, IPA:  ; Greek Ευρώπη) is a moon of the planet Jupiter. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (913x913, 462 KB) [[Melanie is a cool moon my aunt found this moon and she is still living nnnnnnaaaaaaasssssssass[[Media:--~~~~Example. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2666x2000, 528 KB) Interior of Europa original description: Cutaway view of the possible internal structure of Europa The surface of the satellite is a mosaic of images obtained in 1979 by NASAs Voyager spacecraft. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Oxygen 100% Ganymede (gan-É™-meed, IPA: ; Greek Γανυμήδης) is Jupiters largest moon, and indeed the largest moon in the entire solar system; it is larger in diameter than Mercury but only about half its mass. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2667x2000, 609 KB) Interior of Ganymede original description: Voyager images are used to create a global view of Ganymede. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure trace Carbon dioxide 100% Callisto (kÉ™-lis-toe, IPA: ; Greek Καλλιστώ) is a moon of the planet Jupiter, discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2220x1700, 479 KB) Interior of Callisto original description: This artists concept, a cutaway view of Jupiters moon Callisto, is based on recent data from NASAs Galileo spacecraft which indicates a salty ocean may lie beneath Callistos icy...

Notes

  1. ^ Xi Zezong, The Discovery of Jupiter's Satellite Made by Gan De 2000 years Before Galileo, Chinese Physics 2 (3) (1982): 664-667.

See also


The extensive system of natural satellites of the planet Jupiter has been a common setting for stories in the genre of science fiction. ...

edit Jupiter's natural satellites
Inner satellites | Galilean moons | Themisto | Himalia group | Carpo | S/2003 J 12 | Ananke group | Carme group | Pasiphaë group | S/2003 J 2
See also: Pronunciation key | Rings of Jupiter
Solar System Natural Satellites
v  d  e
     Planetary satellites: TerranMartianJovianSaturnianUranianNeptunian
     Other satellite systems: PlutonianEridianAsteroid satellites
     Largest satellites: GanymedeTitanCallistoIoEarth's MoonEuropaTriton
TitaniaRheaOberonIapetusCharonUmbrielArielDioneTethys
 See also: inner satellitestrojansirregularslist by diameterdiscovery timelinenaming
The Solar System
v  d  e
Image:Solar System XXVII.png
The Sun · Mercury · Venus · Earth · Mars · Ceres · Jupiter · Saturn · Uranus · Neptune · Pluto · Eris
Planets · Dwarf planets · Moons: Terran · Martian · Asteroidal · Jovian · Saturnian · Uranian · Neptunian · Plutonian · Eridian
Small bodies:   Meteoroids · Asteroids (Asteroid belt) · Centaurs · TNOs (Kuiper belt/Scattered disc) · Comets (Oort cloud)
See also astronomical objects and the solar system's list of objects, sorted by radius or mass.

 
 

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