The Outer Edge of A Ring

PIA01953: The Outer Edge of A Ring

Full-Res JPEG (41.4 kB)

Full-Res TIFF (132.8 kB)


The outer edge of Saturn’s A ring is detailed in this image obtained by Voyager 2 on Aug. 26, just half an hour before closest approach, at a range of about 51,000 kilometers (31,700 miles). Resolution in this wide-angle view is about 4 km. (2.5 miles). The many sharp linear features parallel to the ring edge are most probably locations where ring particles are in resonance with one of the several small nearby satellites of about 100-km. radius discovered last fall by Voyager 1. Such regions are likely characterized by more intense particle collisions and a greater density of small “chips.” The entire outer band of the A ring has different scattering properties and therefore different particle characteristics than the main body of the rings to the upper left. The Voyager project is managed for NASA by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.

Image Note: PICNO 1767S2-001

Source: NASA’s Planetary Photojournal: Image No. PIA01953