Did You Know

Neptune's largest moon, Triton, was discovered in 1846, but it was not until at least the 1930s that it was officially known by that name. Although the name Triton was proposed in 1880 by Camille Flammarion, it was often simply known as 'the satellite of Neptune'. Triton is an odd moon in that its orbit is highly tilted (157°) to the plane of Neptune's equator. It also rotates in a direction opposite to the direction of Neptune's rotation. Triton may have been formed independently of Neptune and later captured by Neptune's gravity. The second of Neptune's moons, Nereid, was discovered in 1949.

Table 12.3 Moons of Neptune

Name of moon

Distance (km)

Period (days)

Diameter (km)

Discovered

Naiad

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