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Discussion of the Pioneer 11 observations of the F ring of Saturn

Naturevolume 287pages126128 (1980) | Download Citation

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Abstract

The photopolarimetric and charged particle data from the Pioneer 11 Saturn encounter were used as diagnostic tools in a preliminary analysis of the physical nature of the F ring of Saturn. It is argued that the F ring may have two components, with the outer one composed of solid particles of centimetre-diameter and the inner one of micrometre-sized dust particles. Also, the outer component as scanned by the charged particle detectors may have two rings instead of one. The double-ring option, if verified, could have interesting implications for the dynamical origin of the planetary ring systems.

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Affiliations

  1. Max-Planck-Institut für Aeronomie, D-3411, Katlenburg-Lindau, 3, FRG

    • W.-H. Ip

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https://doi.org/10.1038/287126a0

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