Sharp edges of planetary rings View Full Text


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Article Info

DATE

1982-09

AUTHORS

Nicole Borderies, Peter Goldreich, Scott Tremaine

ABSTRACT

The ring systems of Saturn and Uranus exhibit several sharp edges across which the optical depth drops from order unity to essentially zero. At least two and perhaps all of these features are associated with the location of orbital resonances between a satellite and the ring particles. It is remarkable that the optical depth varies on a distance scale which is much finer than that over which angular momentum can be transferred between a satellite and the ring material. The important features of this phenomenon are: (1) A perturbed band of width Δa/a ≃ (Ms/Mp)½ adjacent to the edge within which the angular momentum transfer occurs. (2) Streamlines perturbed such that the angular momentum luminosity decreases smoothly across the band to zero at the edge even though the optical depth remains constant. (3) Dynamical equilibrium requires a relation between the random velocity, the rate of deformation and the optical depth More... »

PAGES

209-211

Identifiers

URI

http://scigraph.springernature.com/pub.10.1038/299209a0

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/299209a0

DIMENSIONS

https://app.dimensions.ai/details/publication/pub.1027760223


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