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Last Updated: Wednesday November 02 2005 15:55 GMT

Pluto could have two more moons

The two new moons are circled in red, alongside Pluto (white) and Charon (blue)
The two new moons are circled in red, alongside Pluto (white) and Charon (blue)

Pluto may have two more moons than previously thought following investigations by the high-powered Hubble Space Telescope.

Up until now, Pluto's only known moon was Charon, which scientists discovered in 1978. Recent studies have spotted what could be two other moons.

They're a lot smaller than Charon and appear to be orbiting the planet at a much further distance.

Scientists will take a closer look, then decide if they'll name the moons.

At the moment, they are known as S/2005 P1 and S/2005 P2.

Charon is about 1,200km across, but the new ones are only about 45 to 160km across.

Their orbit is thought to be at least twice the distance of Charon's orbit of the planet - the ninth in our solar system.

The follow-up observations will take place in February.