The determination of the structure of Saturn’s F ring by nearby moonlets

  title={The determination of the structure of Saturn’s F ring by nearby moonlets},
  author={Carl D. Murray and Kevin Beurle and Nicholas J. Cooper and Michael W. Evans and Gareth A. Williams and S{\'e}bastien Charnoz},
Saturn’s narrow F ring exhibits several unusual features that vary on timescales of hours to years. These include transient clumps, a central core surrounded by a multistranded structure and a regular series of longitudinal channels associated with Prometheus, one of the ring’s two ‘shepherding’ satellites. Several smaller moonlets and clumps have been detected in the ring’s immediate vicinity, and a population of embedded objects has been inferred. Here we report direct evidence of moonlets… 

Physical collisions of moonlets and clumps with the Saturn's F-ring core

The Structure of Saturn's Rings

Our understanding of the structure of Saturn's rings has evolved steadily since their discovery by Galileo Galilei in 1610. With each advance in observations of the rings over the last four

The recent formation of Saturn's moonlets from viscous spreading of the main rings

A hybrid simulation is reported in which the viscous spreading of Saturn’s rings beyond the Roche limit (the distance beyond which the rings are gravitationally unstable) gives rise to the small moons.

Observations and Models of Accretion in Saturn's F Ring

Saturn's F ring is the solar system's principal natural laboratory for direct observation of accretion and disruption processes. Among the structures contained in its meager ~10 km radial width are

Detection of Low-velocity Collisions in Saturn's F Ring

Jets of material extending several hundred kilometers from Saturn's F ring are thought to be caused by collisions at speeds of several tens of ms−1 between ∼10 km diameter objects such as S/2004 S 6


New images from the Cassini spacecraft reveal optically thick clumps, capable of casting shadows, and associated structures in regions of Saturn's F ring that have recently experienced close passage

An Evolving View of Saturn’s Dynamic Rings

The understanding of Saturn’s rings is reviewed after nearly 6 years of observations by the Cassini spacecraft and it remains unclear whether the vigorous evolutionary processes to which the rings are subject imply a much younger age than that of the solar system.

The shape of Saturn’s Huygens ringlet viewed by Cassini ISS

Cassini-Huygens’ exploration of the Saturn system: 13 years of discovery

The Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn provided a close-up study of the gas giant planet, as well as its rings, moons, and magnetosphere, and results show that Saturn's rings are substantially younger than the planet itself and constrain models of their origin.



Cassini Discovers a Kinematic Spiral Ring Around Saturn

New Cassini observations show that these strands, initially interpreted as concentric ring segments, are in fact connected and form a single one-arm trailing spiral winding at least three times around Saturn.

100-metre-diameter moonlets in Saturn's A ring from observations of 'propeller' structures

The observation of four longitudinal double-streaks in an otherwise bland part of the mid-A ring is reported, infering that these ‘propeller’-shaped perturbations arise from the effects of embedded moonlets approximately 40 to 120 m in diameter.

How Prometheus creates structure in Saturn's F ring

Numerical models show that as Prometheus recedes from its closest approach to the F ring, it draws out ring material; one orbital period later, this affected region has undergone keplerian shear and is visible as a channel, in excellent agreement with structures seen in the Cassini images.

Detection of centimeter-sized meteoroid impact events in Saturn's F ring.

Voyager images reveal that three prominent clumps in Saturn's F ring were short-lived, appearing rapidly and then spreading and decaying in brightness over periods of approximately 2 weeks. These

Saturn's F Ring: Kinematics and Particle Sizes from Stellar Occultation Studies

Abstract The occultation of GSC5249-01240 by Saturn's rings was observed in a spectrally resolved mode using the Faint Object Spectrograph on the Hubble Space Telescope. By combining these data with