National Aeronautics and Space Administration Logo
Follow this link to skip to the main content NASA Banner
Solar System Exploration
Planets
Nereid: Overview
   Back to Neptune   Overview   Gallery   Facts & Figures   News 
Fuzzy black and white image of Nereid.
This fuzzy Voyager 2 image taken in 1989 helped scientists determine Nereid's size.

Nereid is one of the outermost of Neptune's known moons and is among the largest. Nereid is unique because it has one of the most eccentric orbits of any moon in our solar system. Nereid is so far from Neptune that it requires 360 Earth days to make one orbit. This odd orbit suggests that Nereid may be a captured asteroid or Kuiper Belt object or that it was greatly disturbed during the capture of Neptune's largest moon Triton.

Discovery:
Nereid was discovered on 1 May 1949 by Gerard P. Kuiper with a ground-based telescope. It was the last satellite of Neptune to be discovered before Voyager 2's discoveries four decades later.

How Nereid Got its Name:
Moons of Neptune are named for characters from Greek or Roman mythology associated with Neptune or Poseidon, or the oceans. Irregular satellites are named for the Nereids, daughters of Nereus and Doris and the attendants of Neptune.

Nereid (NEER-ee-ed) is named after the Nereids, sea-nymphs, in Greek mythology. Kuiper proposed the name when he reported his discovery.

Just the Facts
Metric | English | Scientific Notation
Mass:  3.0873 x 1019 kg
Resources
People Spotlight
Gerard Kuiper Gerard Kuiper
Gerard Kuiper is regarded by many as the father of modern planetary science. His theories led to the discovery of the Kuiper Belt. Read More...
Headlines
22 Jan 2003: 
Awards and Recognition   Solar System Exploration Roadmap   Contact Us   Site Map   Print This Page
NASA Official: Kristen Erickson
Advisory: Dr. James Green, Director of Planetary Science
Outreach Manager: Alice Wessen
Curator/Editor: Phil Davis
Science Writer: Autumn Burdick
Producer: Greg Baerg
Webmaster: David Martin
> NASA Science Mission Directorate
> Budgets, Strategic Plans and Accountability Reports
> Equal Employment Opportunity Data
   Posted Pursuant to the No Fear Act
> Information-Dissemination Policies and Inventories
> Freedom of Information Act
> Privacy Policy & Important Notices
> Inspector General Hotline
> Office of the Inspector General
> NASA Communications Policy
> USA.gov
> ExpectMore.gov
> NASA Advisory Council
> Open Government at NASA
Last Updated: 12 Aug 2013