Production and fate of the G ring arc particles due to Aegaeon (Saturn LIII)

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Madeira, Gustavo [UNESP]
Sfair, R. [UNESP]
Mourão, D. C. [UNESP]
Winter, S.M. Giuliatti [UNESP]

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The G ring arc hosts the smallest satellite of Saturn, Aegaeon, observed with a set of images sent by Cassini spacecraft. Along with Aegaeon, the arc particles are trapped in a 7:6 corotation eccentric resonance with the satellite Mimas. Due to this resonance, both Aegaeon and the arc material are confined to within 60° of corotating longitudes. The arc particles are dust grains which can have their orbital motions severely disturbed by the solar radiation force. Our numerical simulations showed that Aegaeon is responsible for depleting the arc dust population by removing them through collisions. The solar radiation force hastens these collisions by removing most of the 10 μm sized grains in less than 40 yr. Some debris released from Aegaeon's surface by meteoroid impacts can populate the arc. However, it would take 30 000 yr for Aegaeon to supply the observed amount of arc material, and so it is unlikely that Aegaeon alone is the source of dust in the arc.



Planets and satellites: rings

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Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, v. 475, n. 4, p. 5474-5479, 2018.