How Many Moons Are in Our Solar System?

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This is our planet Earth with only one moon that orbits it. The small, whitish-yellow satellite that travels around this planet each month, affects our life in countless ways.  Are there other moons, and if so, how many moons are in our Solar system?

Notably, a moon is a naturally formed body that orbits a planet. Some people refer to them as planetary satellites or natural satellites.  Some planets have more than one moon, while there are others with more than a hundred. Our moon does not have a unique name since it was believed to be the only one. Later, scientists discovered hundreds more.

How Many Moons Are in Our Solar System?


One of the most interesting facts about moons and planets is that not all planets have natural satellites. In our  Solar system, Venus and Mercury do not have moons.  Due to its closeness to the sun, Mercury would not be able to retain its moon before losing it to the sun’s gravity. However, scientists are unable to explain the case of Venus.

According to NASA scientists, there are 293 known moons in our Solar system that orbit the eight known planets and the dwarf planet, Pluto. The most recent count is: the Earth has 1 moon; Mars with 2; 95 at Jupiter; Saturn boasts 146;  Uranus owns 28; Neptune hosts 16; and five at dwarf planet Pluto.

Another important data looks at what astronomers classify as small-body satellites. These are moons that orbit non-planetary or smaller objects including asteroids and dwarf planets. So far, there are 470 of these moons documented by scientists.

In addition, some dwarf planets, like Makemake and Ceres, do not have moons. Others, such as Eris and Huamea, have one and two moons respectively.

Our Solar system is a large expanse that is still unexplored. Each new planet, dwarf planet, or asteroid that may show up will increase the final tally of how many moons are in our Solar system.



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