By: Ashwin Purohit
What is Ganymede
It is a moon that orbits Jupiter, and is the biggest moon in the solar system. People say that if it was not orbiting Jupiter, it would be easily classified as a planet. It also has the distinction of being the only moon of having a magnetosphere, ( which is the area around Ganymede and is conducted by possibly iron, but must be in motion, but this is a new idea by scientists). Ganymede is also of one 49 moons of Jupiter, but also 14 left unfound.
Ganymede: Jupiter's Largest Moon | Video
Discovery of Ganymede
January 7, 1610, by Galileo Galilie along with 3 other jovian moons. Discovering these 4 moons led to the understanding that planets in our solar system orbit around the sun, and not the Earth. Ganymede got its name when Galileo originally called Jupiters moons the Medician planets, after the Medici family and reffered to the individual moons, but later in mythology, a young boy who was carried to olympus by zeus disguised as an eagle, Ganymede became by the Olympian gods.
Astronomers used the Hubble space telescope finding evidence of 21% of oxygen on the atmosphere on Ganymede found in 1996, But the atmosphere is far too thin for any life to be on there or to live for oxygen. The other contents on this very thin atmosphere is only 1% carbon dioxide, and 78% of nitrogen. The atmosphere was created by molecules from the magnetosphere.
Properties of the moon
The gravity is 1.428 m/s (SQUARED) and only has 3 main layers. A sphere metallic core that generates the magnetic field, a spherical shell of rock, the mantle, and a shelly icy crust that covers it all. It also has 2 terrains on the surface- 40% of the surface is covered by highly cratered dark regions, and 60% is covered by a light grooved terrain which forms intricate patterns, and also has a circumference of 10,273 miles.
Jupiter and moon Ganymede through a Celestron Edge HD14 telescope
Movements of Ganymede
Ganymede's orbit time is 172 hours, which is 7 days and 3 hr. There has also been another siting where where when Ganymede orbits Jupiter, they interact with regions of plasma generating electromagnetic waves which are projected by Jupiters magnetic field which lines up towards it pole where it causes auroral bright spots. ( Like northern lights).