Saturn's Moons


Saturn has 18 observed and named moons. It has the most satellites observed of any of the planets in our solar system. However, recent observations with the Hubble Space Telescope indicates there may be more moons.

The moons of Saturn are named after the Greek God Cronus. Saturn's moon Titan is the second largest moon in the solar system, second to Jupiter's moon Ganymede. However, if Titan's thick nitrogen-methane atmosphere were allowed in the measurement, it would be the largest moon in the solar system.

There are some generalizations that apply to most of Saturn's moons. Most of the moons do not have an appreciable atmosphere. Most follow a synchronous rotation, meaning the rotational period is equal to its orbital period. The moons mostly follow circular orbits and lie in the equatorial plane. Most of the moons are composed of 30% to 40% rock and 60% to 70% water ice. They mostly reflect 60% to 90% of the light that strikes them. Generalizations are only generalizations. For each of the ones listed above, there is at least one or two of Saturn's moons that break them.