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Dynamics of the dust rings and satellites of Uranus and of the Saturns F-ring


, : Dynamics of the dust rings and satellites of Uranus and of the Saturns F-ring.

The $\mu$ and $\nu$ rings of Uranus form a secondary ring-moon system withthe satellites Puck, Mab,Portia, and Rosalind. These rings are tenuous anddominated by micrometric particles, which can be strongly disturbed by thesolar radiation pressure. We performed a numerical analysis of the orbitalevolution of a sample of particles under the influence of the solar radiationforce and the planetary oblateness, combined with the gravitational interactionwith the close satellites. The most likely result is a collisions and thedeposition of particles onto the surface of these satellites. Since thismechanism tends to cause a depletion of material of the rings, we investigateadditional sources for these dust particles. Adopting a rough estimative of theflux of interplanetary meteoroids, we found that the ejections from Mab couldgenerate a ring with optical depth comparable with the observations. A similar analysis was carried out for the F-ring dust band. The damping dueto the Saturn's oblateness prevents the overstated changes of the eccentricityand increases in the lifetime of the particles. Therewithal photometric studyof the F-ring using Cassini images revealed that substantial secular increasein the brightness of Saturn's F ring has occurred in the last 25 years. Theshapes of the phase curves from Cassini and Voyager are similar, suggestingthat although the number of dust particles has increased, the overalldistribution of sizes is unchanged. The dust bands that permeate the rings of Uranus were observed late in 2007during the equinox, when the Sun crossed the ring plane. Images taken with theVLT were processed and then combined to result in long-exposure frames. Foreach frame, the north and south radial profiles were extracted. They will beused to develop a photometric model.

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