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Analysis of the Outer Region of Saturn's D-ring from Cassini's occultation data

Grant number: 19/15309-3
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2021
Effective date (End): February 28, 2022
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Astronomy - Solar System Astronomy
Principal researcher:Othon Cabo Winter
Grantee:Altair Ramos Gomes Junior
Supervisor abroad: Philip David Nicholson
Home Institution: Faculdade de Engenharia (FEG). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Guaratinguetá. Guaratinguetá , SP, Brazil
Research place: Cornell University, United States  
Associated to the scholarship:18/11239-8 - Determination of satellites and rings orbits from analysis of spacecrafts images, BP.PD

Abstract

The project consists of analyzing Cassini occultation data of the Saturn's D ring. This ring is the innermost ring of Saturn, which is very affected by the planet's gravitational field. Due to its closeness, it is very difficult to observe and few works have been made to study this ring.Cassini occultations revealed several narrow ringlets in the D ring, smaller than 1 km wide. These ringlets are unexpected because there is, still, no known process responsible to confining them.The preliminary analysis of one ringlet has shown an eccentric feature which is precessing. However, many ringlets have not been analysed yet, mainly because they do not seem to appear consistently in the profiles.We will study the stellar occultations to determine the shape and longitudinal variations of these ringlets. This will help the determination of the forces that could be responsible by confining the ring material and to probe the planet's gravitational field structure.

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