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New tiny moon found orbiting faraway Neptune

Thursday - 7/18/2013, 6:20pm  ET

This diagram provided by NASA shows the orbits of several moons located close to the planet Neptune. NASA announced the discovery of Neptune's 14th moon Monday, July 15, 2013. The new moon, Neptune's tiniest, is designated S/2004 N 1. It's 100 million times fainter than the faintest star visible with the naked eye. (AP Photo/NASA)

MARCIA DUNN
AP Aerospace Writer

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) -- Chalk up one more moon for Neptune.

NASA announced the discovery of Neptune's 14th moon Monday. The Hubble Space Telescope captured the moon as a white dot in photos of Neptune on the outskirts of our solar system.

The new moon -- Neptune's tiniest at just 12 miles across -- is designated S/2004 N 1.

The SETI Institute's Mark Showalter of Mountain View, Calif., made the discovery. He was studying the segments of rings around Neptune when the white dot popped out, 65,400 miles from Neptune. He tracked its movement in more than 150 pictures taken from 2004 to 2009.

The considerably bigger gas giant Jupiter has four times as many moons, with 67.

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Online:

Hubble: http://hubblesite.org/


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