Pandora, a Would-Be Perturber

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As Cassini hurtled toward a deadly confront with Saturn, a booster incited to locate this final demeanour during Saturn’s moon Pandora subsequent to a skinny line of a F ring.

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Over a march of a mission, Cassini helped scientists know that Pandora plays a smaller purpose than they creatively suspicion in moulding a slight ring. When Cassini arrived during Saturn, many suspicion that Pandora and Prometheus worked together to shepherd a F ring between them, restrictive it and sculpting a surprising braided and kinked structures. However, information from Cassini uncover that a sobriety of a dual moons together indeed stirs a F ring into a pell-mell state, generating a “gap and streamer” structure seen elsewhere (see also PIA15501).

Recent models, upheld by Cassini images, advise that it is Prometheus alone, not Pandora, that proportions a bulk of a F ring, aided by a sold characteristics of a orbit.  Prometheus establishes fast locations for F ring element where a moon’s possess gravitational resonances are slightest cluttered by a perturbing change of a kin satellite, Pandora.

This perspective looks toward a sunlit side of a rings from about 28 degrees above a ringplane. The picture was taken in manifest light with a Cassini booster narrow-angle camera on Sept. 14, 2017.

The perspective was performed during a stretch of approximately 360,000 miles (577,000 kilometers) from Pandora and during a Sun-Pandora-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 119 degrees. Image scale is about 2.2 miles (3.5 kilometers) per pixel.

The Cassini booster finished a goal on Sept. 15, 2017.

The Cassini goal is a mild plan of NASA, ESA (the European Space Agency) and a Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a multiplication of a California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages a goal for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Washington. The Cassini orbiter and a dual onboard cameras were designed, grown and fabricated during JPL. The imaging operations core is formed during a Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colorado.

Source: NASA



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