EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 418, Number 2, May I 2004
Page(s) 759 - 764
Section Celestial mechanics and astrometry
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20040038

A&A 418, 759-764 (2004)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20040038

A note on the horseshoe confinement model: The Poynting-Robertson effect

S. M. Giuliatti Winter, O. C. Winter and A. H. F. Guimarães

Grupo de Dinâmica Orbital & Planetologia, UNESP, CP 205, Guaratinguetá, CEP 12500-000, SP, Brazil
(Received 22 October 2002 / Accepted 31 December 2003 )

In the present work we numerically simulated the motion of particles coorbital to a small satellite under the Poynting-Robertson light drag effect in order to verify the symmetry suggested by Dermott et al. (1979, 1980) on their ring confinement model. The results reveal a more complex scenario, especially for very small particles (micrometer sizes), which present chaotic motion. Despite the complexity of the trajectories the particles remain confined inside the coorbital region. However, the dissipative force caused by the solar radiation also includes the radiation pressure component which can change this configuration. Our results show that the inclusion of the radiation pressure, which is not present in the original confinement model, can destroy the configuration in a time much shorter than the survival time predicted for a dust particle in a horseshoe orbit with a satellite.

Key words: planets: rings -- solar system: general

Offprint request: S. M. Giuliatti Winter, silvia@feg.unesp.br

© ESO 2004