The coolest moons of Jupiter and Saturn…

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The Amalthea group

Within the orbit of Jupiter’s innermost large moon, Io, are four smaller moons: Metis, Adrastea, Amalthea, and Thebe. They are also known as the Inner Group (or the Amalthea Group) after their largest moon, which measures 270 kilometers at its longest.

Amalthea is the reddest object in the Solar System, possibly because of sulfur being ejected by Io’s volcanoes. Amalthea appears to radiate a greater amount of heat than it receives. NASAThis could be because the magnetic field of Jupiter induces electric currents in the core of the moon. It may also be generated by tidal movements that make Io such a volcanic world. 

All four Amalthean Moons orbit Jupiter at a breakneck speed. Thebe orbits Jupiter in 16 hours and Amalthea takes 12 hours. Adrastea, meanwhile, takes just seven hours to complete a full orbit around Jupiter.

Adrastea and Metis orbit inside Jupiter’s main ring and are likely the source of the ring’s material. Amalthea and Thebe shed material that creates Jupiter’s Gossamer ring.

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