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Small Satellites

These images of the inner Jovian moons Thebe, Amalthea, and Metis (left to right), taken in January, 2000, by the Galileo spacecraft, are the highest resolution images ever obtained of these small, irregularly shaped satellites. The moons are shown in their correct relative sizes, with sunlight coming from the right. The prominent impact crater on Thebe is about 40 kilometers (about 25 miles) across and has been given the provisional name Zethus. The large white region near the south pole of Amalthea marks the location of the brightest patch of surface material seen anywhere on these three moons and sits inside a large crater named Gaea. The ‘scalloped' or ‘sawtooth' shape of Amalthea's terminator indicates that parts of this satellite's surface are very rough, with many small hills and valleys.

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