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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2014-09-17
    Description: The satellite system of Neptune is so irregular that some formation mechanism or subsequent dynamical evolution that sets it apart from the other, more regular, satellite systems is obviously indicated. McKinnon argued that satellite capture is the most likely possibility and has shown that tidal circularization of Triton's presumably highly eccentric initial orbit probably resulted in melting of the satellite's interior. The satellite system of Uranus, although somewhat bland, also has a number of special features that indicate an interesting dynamical history. These include the anomalously high orbital inclination of Miranda and the probable coexistence of small satellites and narrow rings inside the plant's Roche limit. The possibility that orbital evolution due to tidal dissipation is involved in both of these phenomena is discussed. Other topics discussed are: the origin of rings; the formation of coorbital satellites; the lack of stable orbit-orbit resonances in the Uranian satellite system; and chaos, tidal heating and the shapes of Miranda and Ariel.
    Keywords: LUNAR AND PLANETARY EXPLORATION
    Type: JPL Uranus and Neptune; p 377-404
    Format: text
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