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The ring arc and a site of concentrated ring particles
- Title The ring arc and a site of concentrated ring particles
- Released 03/08/2007 4:37 pm
- Copyright NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
This image shows the arc orbits at a distance of 167,496 kilometres. It is about 250 kilometres wide in radius and subtends less than 60 degrees of orbital longitude. The classical position of the G ring is about 172,600 kilometres from Saturn, and the arc blends smoothly into this region. Scientists suspect that bodies trapped in this remarkably bright feature may be the source of the G ring material, driven outward from the arc by electromagnetic forces in the Saturn system.
The arc itself is likely held in place by gravitational resonances with Mimas of the type that anchor the famed arcs in Neptune's rings. There is an obvious narrow dark gap in the G ring beyond the arc. This feature is close to yet another resonance with Mimas, but no arcs are present at this locale.