University of Oulu

Shadows of Saturn’s ring moons in the dusty E-ring

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Author: Liljeblad, Joni1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Science, Physics
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 14.7 MB)
Pages: 35
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Language: English
Published: Oulu : J. Liljeblad, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-06-23
Thesis type: Bachelor's thesis


Moons orbiting within Saturn’s diffuse E-Ring cause cylindrical shadows to appear inside the ring at high phase angles when the moons obscure sunlight from areas behind them. These shadows can be observed in multiple images taken on the Cassini-Huygens mission at high phase angles when the ring material is scattering sunlight and dust in the area obstructed by the moon does not scatter sunlight creating a shadow. On this preliminary analysis we focus on the shadows of Enceladus and Tethys and show that this method is viable for inferring local ring properties. Information about the size distribution and light scattering properties of the E-Ring particles can theoretically be inferred from measurements. A preliminary analysis is presented with the goal of investigating whether enough data is present and can meaningful results be produced. A Python program was developed to analyze and extract data from the Cassini-Huygens mission images. This Program is used to analyze shadows in images of the moons Enceladus and Tethys taken with different filters and wavelengths at high phase angles.

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Copyright information: © Joni Liljeblad, 2021. This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.