Amalthea : Jupiter’s Satellites
According to recent findings, Amalthea appears to radiate out more heat than it receives from the sun, which NASA suggests may be due to Jupiter’s magnetic field or from tidal stresses.
- Amalthea is tidally locked to Jupiter in synchronous rotation — it always aligns with the planet along its long axis.
- The moon Amalthea is one of Jupiter’s 53 named satellites; it was the first to be discovered after the four Galilean moons, and it is the fifth-largest overall.
- In terms of proximity to Jupiter, Amalthea is the planet’s third moon — it takes just 12 hours to make a full orbit.
- Amalthea also contributes to one of the Gossamer Rings of Jupiter — the Amalthea Gossamer Ring — which is the faint innermost Gossamer ring of the planet. The Gossamer Rings are outside the main Jovian ring.
- Only two missions have visited Amalthea: Voyager and Galileo. Both the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 spacecraft photographed the Jovian moon during their flybys in 1979.