Reports

Occultation by a Possible Third Satellite of Neptune

Science  15 Jan 1982:
Vol. 215, Issue 4530, pp. 289-291
DOI: 10.1126/science.215.4530.289

Abstract

The 24 May 1981 close approach of Neptune to an uncataloged star was photoelectrically monitored from two observatories separated by 6 kilometers parallel to the occultation track. An 8.1-second drop in signal, recorded simultaneously at both sites, is interpreted as resulting from the passage of a third satellite of Neptune in front of the star. From the duration of the event, the derived minimum diameter for an object sharing Neptune's motion is 180 kilometers. If the object was in Neptune's equatorial plane and there are no significant errors in the prediction ephemeris, the object was located at a distance of 3 Neptune radii from Neptune's center.

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