EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 401, Number 2, April II 2003
Page(s) 763 - 772
Section The Sun
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20030174

A&A 401, 763-772 (2003)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20030174

On the orbits of the outer satellites of Jupiter

T. Yokoyama1, M. T. Santos1, G. Cardin1 and O. C. Winter2

1  Universidade Estadual Paulista, IGCE - DEMAC Caixa Postal 178, CEP 13.500-970 Rio Claro (São Paulo), Brasil
2  Universidade Estadual Paulista, FEG, Grupo de Dinâmica Orbital e Planetologia da UNESP, Caixa Postal 205, CEP 12.516-410 Guaratinguetá (São Paulo), Brasil
    e-mail: ocwinter@feg.unesp.br

(Received 11 September 2002 / Accepted 31 January 2003 )

In this work we study the basic aspects concerning the stability of the outer satellites of Jupiter. Including the effects of the four giant planets and the Sun we study a large grid of initial conditions. Some important regions where satellites cannot survive are found. Basically these regions are due to Kozai and other resonances. We give an analytical explanation for the libration of the pericenters $\varpi-\varpi_J$. Another different center is also found. The period and amplitude of these librations are quite sensitive to initial conditions, so that precise observational data are needed for Pasiphae and Sinope. The effect of Jupiter's mass variation is briefly presented. This effect can be responsible for satellite capture and also for locking $\varpi-\varpi_J$ in temporary libration.

Key words: planets and satellites: general -- solar system: general

Offprint request: T. Yokoyama, tadashi@ms.rc.unesp.br

© ESO 2003