April 16, 2014
New images from Nasa’s Cassini-Huygens space probe suggest that Saturn may be in the process of forming a new moon, which has already been affectionately named by scientists as ‘Peggy’.
The tiny, icy satellite has not been spotted directly, but a bulge in Saturn’s A Ring – the brightest and outermost ring – suggests that the new arrival could soon join Saturn’s already impressive family of 62 moons.
“We have not seen anything like this before,” said astronomer Carl Murray, lead author of a study in Icarus which outlined the findings and the discoverer of the moon. “We may be looking at the act of birth, where this object is leaving the rings and heading off to be a moon in its own right.”