Astrophysics (Index)About

ring system

(disk or set of rings orbiting a planet)

A ring system is a set of rings (collections of some kind of visible material forming flat, circular regions) orbiting a planet, in the same manner as disk orbiting a star. Saturn's set of rings are the first that were known, but Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune are now known to have them and they have been discovered around some minor planets through occultation observations, and one star system, around star, J1407 shows evidence of an extremely large extra-solar planet ring system.

Saturn's rings show a lot of complexity and study of them continues, as space missions have acquired additional data, including the existence of shepherd moons and of patterns, some of which do not yet have consensus explanations. Some models suggest such rings have a much shorter lifetime than the planets.


(planets,object type,Saturn,Jupiter,Uranus,Neptune,rings)
Further reading:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ring_system

Referenced by pages:
axisymmetric
disk
Enceladus
J1407
Jupiter
Saturn
shepherd moon
Uranus

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