Janus (moon) facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
PIA12714 Janus crop
Janus as imaged by Cassini on April 7, 2010: highest-resolution full-disk image to date
Discovered by Audouin Dollfus
Discovery date 15 December 1966
Named after
Adjectives Janian

Janus is a moon of Saturn. It was discovered by Audouin Dollfus in 1966. Astronomers were first mistaken that another moon, Epimetheus, was the same as Janus. Voyager 1 confirmed in 1980 that there were two moons that share the same orbit.


Janus is named after the two-faced Roman god Janus. Although the name was informally proposed soon after the initial 1966 discovery, it was not officially adopted until 1983, when Epimetheus was also named. It is also known as Saturn X

Physical characteristics

Janus is extensively cratered with several craters larger than 30 km, but has few linear features. Janus's surface appears to be older than Prometheus's but younger than Pandora's.

Janus has a very low density and relatively high albedo, meaning that it is likely very icy and porous (a rubble pile).

Images for kids

Janus (moon) Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.