Volume 620, December 2018
|Number of page(s)||13|
|Section||Planets and planetary systems|
|Published online||30 November 2018|
Modeling the evection resonance for Trojan satellites: application to the Saturn system
Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Observatorio Astronómico, IATE,
Laprida 854, 5000 Córdoba, Argentina
2 Observatório Nacional, Rio de Janeiro, 20921-400, RJ, Brazil
Accepted: 6 September 2018
Context. The stability of satellites in the solar system is affected by the so-called evection resonance. The moons of Saturn, in particular, exhibit a complex dynamical architecture in which co-orbital configurations occur, especially close to the planet where this resonance is present.
Aims. We address the dynamics of the evection resonance, with particular focus on the Saturn system, and compare the known behavior of the resonance for a single moon with that of a pair of moons in co-orbital Trojan configuration.
Methods. We developed an analytic expansion of the averaged Hamiltonian of a Trojan pair of bodies, including the perturbation from a distant massive body. The analysis of the corresponding equilibrium points was restricted to the asymmetric apsidal corotation solution of the co-orbital dynamics. We also performed numerical N-body simulations to construct dynamical maps of the stability of the evection resonance in the Saturn system, and to study the effects of this resonance under the migration of Trojan moons caused by tidal dissipation.
Results. The structure of the phase space of the evection resonance for Trojan satellites is similar to that of a single satellite, differing in that the libration centers are displaced from their standard positions by an angle that depends on the periastron difference ϖ2 −ϖ1 and on the mass ratio m2∕m1 of the Trojan pair. In the Saturn system, the inner evection resonance, located at ~8 RS, may capture a pair of Trojan moons by migration; the stability of the captured system depends on the assumed values of the dissipation factor Q of the moons. On the other hand, the outer evection resonance, located at >0.4 RHill, cannot exist at all for Trojan moons, because Trojan configurations are strongly unstable at distances from Saturn longer than ~0.15 RHill.
Conclusions. The interaction with the inner evection resonance may have been relevant during the early evolution of the Saturn moons Tethys, Dione, and Rhea. In particular, Rhea may have had Trojan companions in the past that were lost when it crossed the evection resonance, while Tethys and Dione may either have retained their Trojans or have never crossed the evection. This may help to constrain the dynamical processes that led to the migration of these satellites and to the evection itself.
Key words: celestial mechanics / methods: numerical / methods: analytical / planets and satellites: dynamical evolution and stability / planets and satellites: individual: Saturn
© ESO 2018
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