Saturn's B-Ring Peaks

Saturn's B-Ring Peaks

While the Winter Olympics are being held in South Korea, a more dramatic mountain scene with many trails can be seen on Saturn. Here is one of the rings of the planet.

These fluffy tops - one of the highest among the rings of Saturn. They manage to climb 2.5 km above the annular plane with a significant deviation from the vertical thickness of the main rings (usually 10 m). They rise abruptly from the edge of the B-ring.

But do not think that before you something solid. In fact, these are ring particles that react to the gravity of the satellites and wave-like formations in the rings.

At the top of the picture between rings A and B, you can look at the Cassini Department. On this territory, moon grooves of up to a kilometer or more were noticed. Probably, these bodies affect the material of the ring and cause the particles to “splash”. Such a survey is available only during the equinox of Saturn (every 15 Earth years). The illumination geometry reduces the angle of the Sun to the plane of the ring, and causes the structures protruding from the plane to cast a shadow.

The image was mined on July 26, 2009, two weeks before the equinox. The camera observes the southern side of the rings at a distance of 336,000 km. Scale - 2 km / pixel. The picture shows a section with a length of 1200 km.

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