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Amaltea

Amaltea


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Amaltea It is one of the most peculiar Jupiter satellites. Discovered in 1882 by Edward Emerson Barnard, he was first photographed for the first time in 1979 by the American interplanetary probe Voyager 1.

Amalthea is oblong in shape with the major axis of approximately 270 km. and the less than 150 km. "It looks like a red-dark and pitted potato," American scholars commented when they first saw the images captured closely.

It is in orbit at approximately 181,000 km. from Jupiter (half the Earth-Moon distance) and covers its route in about 12 hours.

Amalthea has a surface temperature higher than would be assumed if it were limited to reflect the light it receives from the Sun and Jupiter. This phenomenon is explained by an interaction between the small satellite and the intense Jupiterian magnetic field in which it is immersed.

Regarding the nature of its dark-red surface, there is a hypothesis that is coated with sulphides expelled by the volcanic activity of the nearby Io satellite.


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