Friday, June 24, 2005

New Pan Image: Revealing Pan's Influence

CICLOPS has released this view of Saturn's innermost satellite Pan, a small moon that orbits within the Encke Gap of the A ring. The gravitational effects of Pan create density waves within the A ring, as seen in the two images shown above. In addition, several ringlets reside within the Encke Gap. The most prominent is seen in the top image. Kinks in this ringlet are reminscient of those seen in the F ring. One possible explanation for these kinks is that Pan isn't the only moonlet in the Encke Gap.


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