This is a picture of Triton. Triton is Neptune's largest moon. The picture was taken by the Voyager 2 spacecraft.
Click on image for full size

Neptune's Moons and Rings

Neptune has moons. It also has rings, but its rings are different from Saturn's.

Neptune's largest moon is named Triton. Triton is much larger than any of Neptune's other moons. Triton is a very cold place, so the moon is covered with ice. Triton has geysers like the ones at Yellowstone Park on Earth. The geysers on Triton shoot out ice instead of steam. The geysers shoot ice 8 km (5 miles) high into Triton's thin atmosphere!

The rest of Neptune's moons are much smaller than Triton. Gerard Kuiper discovered a moon named Nereid in 1949. Other moons named Despina, Galatea, Larissa, Naiad, Proteus and Thalassa were found by the Voyager 2 spacecraft in 1989. Five more small moons have been found. Three of those were discovered in 2002. Two more were found in 2003. The newest moons don't have official names yet.

Neptune's rings are much darker than Saturn's bright rings. Saturn's rings are made of ice, which reflects lots of light. Neptune's rings are probably made of rocks and dust. Rocks and dust don't reflect as much light.

Last modified April 22, 2009 by Randy Russell.

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