Himalia as seen by spacecraft Cassini
|Discovered by||C. D. Perrine|
|Discovery date||December 3, 1904|
|Pronunciation||/ / hy-MAY-lee-ə or / / hi-MAH-lee-ə|
Mean orbit radius
|250.56 d (0.704 a)|
Average orbital speed
|102.8 × 70.7 km (stellar occultation) |
85 km (ground-based estimate)
75±10 × 60±10 km (Cassini estimate)
|~ 90800 km2|
|Volume||~ 2570000 km3|
|2.6 g/cm3 (assumed) |
1.63 g/cm3 (assuming radius 85 km)
|~ 0.062 m/s2 (0.006 g)|
|~ 0.100 km/s|
Sidereal rotation period
|Temperature||~ 124 K|
Himalia (Jupiter VI) is the largest irregular satellite of Jupiter, with an estimated diameter of at least 205 km (127 mi). It is the fifth largest Jovian satellite, after the four Galilean moons. It was discovered by Charles Dillon Perrine at the Lick Observatory on 3 December 1904 and is named after the nymph Himalia, who bore three sons of Zeus (the Greek equivalent of Jupiter). It is one of the largest planetary moons in the Solar System not imaged in detail, and the largest within the orbit of Neptune.
Himalia was discovered by Charles Dillon Perrine at the Lick Observatory on 3 December 1904.Himalia is Jupiter's most easily observed small satellite; though Amalthea is brighter, its proximity to the planet's brilliant disk makes it a far more difficult object to view.
Himalia is named after the nymph Himalia, who bore three sons of Zeus (the Greek equivalent of Jupiter). The moon did not receive its present name until 1975; Jupiter VI or Jupiter Satellite VI, although calls for a full name appeared shortly after its and Elara's discovery; A.C.D. Crommelin wrote in 1905:before then, it was simply known as
|“||Unfortunately the numeration of Jupiter's satellites is now in precisely the same confusion as that of Saturn's system was before the numbers were abandoned and names substituted. A similar course would seem to be advisable here; the designation V for the inner satellite [Amalthea] was tolerated for a time, as it was considered to be in a class by itself; but it has now got companions, so that this subterfuge disappears. The substitution of names for numerals is certainly more poetic.||”|
The moon was sometimes called Hestia, after the Greek goddess, from 1955 to 1975.
At a distance of about 11,500,000 km (7,100,000 mi) from Jupiter, Himalia takes about 251 Earth days to complete one orbit around Jupiter. It is the largest member of the Himalia group, which are a group of small moons orbiting Jupiter at a distance from 11,400,000 km (7,100,000 mi) to 13,000,000 km (8,100,000 mi), with inclined orbits at an angle of 27.5 degrees to Jupiter's equator. Their orbits are continuously changing due to solar and planetary perturbations.[ citation needed ]
Himalia's rotational period is 7 h46 m55±2 s. Himalia appears neutral in color (grey), like the other members of its group, with colour indices B−V=0.62, V−R=0.4, similar to a C-type asteroid. Measurements by Cassini confirm a featureless spectrum, with a slight absorption at 3 μm, which could indicate the presence of water.
Resolved images of Himalia by Cassini have led to a size estimate of 150 km × 120 km (93 mi × 75 mi), while ground-based estimates suggest that Himalia is large, with a diameter around 170 km (110 mi). In May 2018, Himalia occulted a star, allowing for precise measurements of its size. The occultation was observed from the US state of Georgia. From the occultation, Himalia was given a size estimate of 205.6 km × 141.3 km (127.8 mi × 87.8 mi), in agreement with earlier ground-based estimates.
In 2005, Emelyanov estimated Himalia to have a mass of (4.2±0.6)×1018 kg (GM=0.28±0.04), based on a perturbation of Elara on July 15, 1949. JPL's Solar System dynamics web site assumes that Himalia has a mass of 6.7×1018 kg (GM=0.45) with a radius of 85 km.
Himalia's density will depend on whether it has an average radius of about 67 km (geometric mean from Cassini) or a radius closer to 85 km.
In November 2000, the Cassini spacecraft, en route to Saturn, made a number of images of Himalia, including photos from a distance of 4.4 million km. Himalia covers only a few pixels, but seems to be an elongated object with axes 150±20 and 120±20 km, close to the Earth-based estimations.
In February and March 2007, the New Horizons spacecraft en route to Pluto made a series of images of Himalia, culminating in photos from a distance of 8 million km. Again, Himalia appears only a few pixels across.
The small moon Dia, 4 kilometres in diameter, had gone missing since its discovery in 2000. [ citation needed ]One theory was that it had crashed into the much larger moon Himalia, 170 kilometres in diameter, creating a faint ring. This possible ring appears as a faint streak near Himalia in images from NASA's New Horizons mission to Pluto. This suggests that Jupiter sometimes gains and loses small moons through collisions. However, the recovery of Dia in 2010 and 2011 disproves the link between Dia and the Himalia ring, although it is still possible that a different moon may have been involved.
Adrastea, also known as Jupiter XV, is the second by distance, and the smallest of the four inner moons of Jupiter. It was discovered in photographs taken by Voyager 2 in 1979, making it the first natural satellite to be discovered from images taken by an interplanetary spacecraft, rather than through a telescope. It was officially named after the mythological Adrasteia, foster mother of the Greek god Zeus—the equivalent of the Roman god Jupiter.
Jupiter is the fifth planet from the Sun and the largest in the Solar System. It is a gas giant with a mass one-thousandth that of the Sun, but two-and-a-half times that of all the other planets in the Solar System combined. Jupiter is one of the brightest objects visible to the naked eye in the night sky, and has been known to all ancient civilizations since before recorded history. It is named after the Roman god Jupiter. When viewed from Earth, Jupiter can be bright enough for its reflected light to cast shadows, and is on average the third-brightest natural object in the night sky after the Moon and Venus.
Callisto is the second-largest moon of Jupiter, after Ganymede. It is the third-largest moon in the Solar System after Ganymede and Saturn's largest moon Titan, and the largest object in the Solar System not to be properly differentiated. Callisto was discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei. At 4821 km in diameter, Callisto has about 99% the diameter of the planet Mercury but only about a third of its mass. It is the fourth Galilean moon of Jupiter by distance, with an orbital radius of about 1883000 km. It is not in an orbital resonance like the three other Galilean satellites—Io, Europa, and Ganymede—and is thus not appreciably tidally heated. Callisto's rotation is tidally locked to its orbit around Jupiter, so that the same hemisphere always faces inward; Jupiter appears to stand nearly still in Callisto's sky. It is less affected by Jupiter's magnetosphere than the other inner satellites because of its more remote orbit, located just outside Jupiter's main radiation belt.
Amalthea is a moon of Jupiter. It has the third closest orbit around Jupiter among known moons and was the fifth moon of Jupiter to be discovered, so is also known as Jupiter V. Edward Emerson Barnard discovered the moon on 9 September 1892 and named it after Amalthea of Greek mythology. It was the last natural satellite to be discovered by direct visual observation; all later moons were discovered by photographic or digital imaging.
Ganymede, a satellite of Jupiter, is the largest and most massive of the Solar System's moons. The ninth largest object in the Solar System, it is the largest without a substantial atmosphere. It has a diameter of 5,268 km (3,273 mi) and is 8% larger than the planet Mercury, although only 45% as massive. Possessing a metallic core, it has the lowest moment of inertia factor of any solid body in the Solar System and is the only moon known to have a magnetic field. Outward from Jupiter, it is the seventh satellite and the third of the Galilean moons, the first group of objects discovered orbiting another planet. Ganymede orbits Jupiter in roughly seven days and is in a 1:2:4 orbital resonance with the moons Europa and Io, respectively.
Helene ( HEL-ə-nee; Greek: Ἑλένη) is a moon of Saturn. It was discovered by Pierre Laques and Jean Lecacheux in 1980 from ground-based observations at Pic du Midi Observatory, and was designated S/1980 S 6. In 1988 it was officially named after Helen of Troy, who was the granddaughter of Cronus (Saturn) in Greek mythology. Helene is also designated Saturn XII (12), which it was given in 1982, and Dione B, because it is co-orbital with Dione and located in its leading Lagrangian point (L4). It is one of four known trojan moons.
Thebe also known as Jupiter XIV, is the fourth of Jupiter's moons by distance from the planet. It was discovered by Stephen P. Synnott in images from the Voyager 1 space probe taken on March 5, 1979, while making its flyby of Jupiter. In 1983, it was officially named after the mythological nymph Thebe.
Leda, also known as Jupiter XIII, is a prograde irregular satellite of Jupiter. It was discovered by Charles T. Kowal at the Mount Palomar Observatory on September 14, 1974, after three nights' worth of photographic plates had been taken. It was named after Leda, who was raped by Zeus, the Greek equivalent of Jupiter. Kowal suggested the name and the IAU endorsed it in 1975.
Janus is an inner satellite of Saturn. It is also known as Saturn X. It is named after the mythological Janus.
Epimetheus is an inner satellite of Saturn. It is also known as Saturn XI. It is named after the mythological Epimetheus, brother of Prometheus.
Pandora is an inner satellite of Saturn. It was discovered in 1980 from photos taken by the Voyager 1 probe, and was provisionally designated S/1980 S 26. In late 1985 it was officially named after Pandora from Greek mythology. It is also designated as Saturn XVII.
Hyperion, also known as Saturn VII (7), is a moon of Saturn discovered by William Cranch Bond, George Phillips Bond and William Lassell in 1848. It is distinguished by its irregular shape, its chaotic rotation, and its unexplained sponge-like appearance. It was the first non-round moon to be discovered.
Elara is a prograde irregular satellite of Jupiter. It was discovered by Charles Dillon Perrine at Lick Observatory in 1905. It is the eighth-largest moon of Jupiter and is named after Elara, one of Zeus's lovers and the mother of the giant Tityos.
Pasiphae is a retrograde irregular satellite of Jupiter. It was discovered in 1908 by Philibert Jacques Melotte and later named after the mythological Pasiphaë, wife of Minos and mother of the Minotaur from Greek legend.
Prometheus is an inner satellite of Saturn. It was discovered in 1980 from photos taken by the Voyager 1 probe, and was provisionally designated S/1980 S 27.
There are 79 known moons of Jupiter. The most massive of the moons are the four Galilean moons, which were independently discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei and Simon Marius and were the first objects found to orbit a body that was neither Earth nor the Sun. From the end of the 19th century, dozens of much smaller Jovian moons have been discovered and have received the names of lovers or daughters of the Roman god Jupiter or his Greek equivalent Zeus. The Galilean moons are by far the largest and most massive objects to orbit Jupiter, with the remaining 75 known moons and the rings together comprising just 0.003% of the total orbiting mass.
The Himalia group is a group of prograde irregular satellites of Jupiter that follow similar orbits to Himalia and are thought to have a common origin.
The planet Jupiter has a system of rings known as the rings of Jupiter or the Jovian ring system. It was the third ring system to be discovered in the Solar System, after those of Saturn and Uranus. It was first observed in 1979 by the Voyager 1 space probe and thoroughly investigated in the 1990s by the Galileo orbiter. It has also been observed by the Hubble Space Telescope and from Earth for several years. Ground-based observation of the rings requires the largest available telescopes.
Io is the innermost and third-largest of the four Galilean moons of the planet Jupiter. It is the fourth-largest moon in the solar system, has the highest density of all of them, and has the least amount of water molecules of any known astronomical object in the Solar System. It was discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei and was named after the mythological character Io, a priestess of Hera who became one of Zeus' lovers.
The exploration of Jupiter has been conducted via close observations by automated spacecraft. It began with the arrival of Pioneer 10 into the Jovian system in 1973, and, as of 2016, has continued with eight further spacecraft missions. All of these missions were undertaken by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and all but two have been flybys that take detailed observations without the probe landing or entering orbit. These probes make Jupiter the most visited of the Solar System's outer planets as all missions to the outer Solar System have used Jupiter flybys to reduce fuel requirements and travel time. On 5 July 2016, spacecraft Juno arrived and entered the planet's orbit—the second craft ever to do so. Sending a craft to Jupiter entails many technical difficulties, especially due to the probes' large fuel requirements and the effects of the planet's harsh radiation environment.