An annotated picture of Saturn's many moons captured by the Cassini spacecraft. Shown in the image are Dione, Enceladus, Epimetheus, Prometheus, Mimas, Rhea, Janus, Tethys and Titan.

The moons of Saturn are numerous and diverse, ranging from tiny moonlets only tens of meters across to the enormous Titan, which is larger than the planet Mercury. There are 146 moons with confirmed orbits, the most of any planet in the solar system.[1][a] This number does not include the many thousands of moonlets embedded within Saturn's dense rings, nor hundreds of possible kilometer-sized distant moons that were seen through telescopes but not recaptured.[3][4][5] Seven Saturnian moons are large enough to have collapsed into a relaxed, ellipsoidal shape, though only one or two of those, Titan and possibly Rhea, are currently in hydrostatic equilibrium. Three moons are particularly notable. Titan is the second-largest moon in the Solar System (after Jupiter's Ganymede), with a nitrogen-rich Earth-like atmosphere and a landscape featuring river networks and hydrocarbon lakes.[6] Enceladus emits jets of ice from its south-polar region and is covered in a deep layer of snow.[7] Iapetus has contrasting black and white hemispheres as well as an extensive ridge of equatorial mountains among the tallest in the solar system.

Of the known moons, 24 are regular satellites; they have prograde orbits not greatly inclined to Saturn's equatorial plane,[8] with the exception of Iapetus which has a prograde but highly inclined orbit,[9][10] an unusual characteristic for a regular moon. They include the seven major satellites, four small moons that exist in a trojan orbit with larger moons, and five that act as shepherd moons, of which two are mutually co-orbital. Two tiny moons orbit inside of Saturn's B and G rings. The relatively large Hyperion is locked in an orbital resonance with Titan. The remaining regular moons orbit near the outer edges of the dense A Ring and the narrow F Ring, and between the major moons Mimas and Enceladus. The regular satellites are traditionally named after Titans and Titanesses or other figures associated with the mythological Saturn.

The remaining 122, with mean diameters ranging from 2 to 213 km (1 to 132 mi), are irregular satellites, whose orbits are much farther from Saturn, have high orbital inclinations and eccentricities, and are mixed between prograde and retrograde. These moons are probably captured minor planets, or fragments from the collisional breakup of such bodies after they were captured, creating collisional families. Saturn is expected to have around 150 irregular satellites larger than 2.8 km (1.7 mi) in diameter, plus many hundreds more that are even smaller. The irregular satellites are classified by their orbital characteristics into the prograde Inuit and Gallic groups and the large retrograde Norse group, and their names are chosen from the corresponding mythologies (with the Gallic group corresponding to Celtic mythology). The sole exception is Phoebe, the ninth moon of Saturn and largest irregular one, discovered at the end of the 19th century; it is part of the Norse group but named for a Greek Titaness.

The rings of Saturn are made up of objects ranging in size from microscopic to moonlets hundreds of meters across, each in its own orbit around Saturn.[11] Thus an absolute number of Saturnian moons cannot be given, because there is no consensus on a boundary between the countless small anonymous objects that form Saturn's ring system and the larger objects that have been named as moons. Over 150 moonlets embedded in the rings have been detected by the disturbance they create in the surrounding ring material, though this is thought to be only a small sample of the total population of such objects.[4]

There are 83 designated moons that are still unnamed (as of May 2023); all but one (the designated B-ring moonlet S/2009 S 1) are irregular. (There are many other undesignated ring moonlets.) If named, most of the irregulars will receive names from Gallic, Norse and Inuit mythology based on the orbital group of which they are a member.[12][13]

Discovery

A large bright circle in the center is surrounded by small circles.
Saturn (overexposed) and the moons Iapetus, Titan, Dione, Hyperion, and Rhea viewed through a 12.5-inch telescope

Early observations

Before the advent of telescopic photography, eight moons of Saturn were discovered by direct observation using optical telescopes. Saturn's largest moon, Titan, was discovered in 1655 by Christiaan Huygens using a 57-millimeter (2.2 in) objective lens[14] on a refracting telescope of his own design.[15] Tethys, Dione, Rhea and Iapetus (the "Sidera Lodoicea") were discovered between 1671 and 1684 by Giovanni Domenico Cassini.[16] Mimas and Enceladus were discovered in 1789 by William Herschel.[16] Hyperion was discovered in 1848 by W. C. Bond, G. P. Bond[17] and William Lassell.[18]

The use of long-exposure photographic plates made possible the discovery of additional moons. The first to be discovered in this manner, Phoebe, was found in 1899 by W. H. Pickering.[19] In 1966 the tenth satellite of Saturn was discovered by Audouin Dollfus, when the rings were observed edge-on near an equinox.[20] It was later named Janus. A few years later it was realized that all observations of 1966 could only be explained if another satellite had been present and that it had an orbit similar to that of Janus.[20] This object is now known as Epimetheus, the eleventh moon of Saturn. It shares the same orbit with Janus—the only known example of co-orbitals in the Solar System.[21] In 1980, three additional Saturnian moons were discovered from the ground and later confirmed by the Voyager probes. They are trojan moons of Dione (Helene) and Tethys (Telesto and Calypso).[21]

Observations by spacecraft

Five moons in a Cassini image: Rhea bisected in the far-right foreground, Mimas behind it, bright Enceladus above and beyond the rings, Pandora eclipsed by the F Ring, and Janus off to the left

The study of the outer planets has since been revolutionized by the use of uncrewed space probes. The arrival of the Voyager spacecraft at Saturn in 1980–1981 resulted in the discovery of three additional moons – Atlas, Prometheus and Pandora, bringing the total to 17.[21] In addition, Epimetheus was confirmed as distinct from Janus. In 1990, Pan was discovered in archival Voyager images.[21]

The Cassini mission,[22] which arrived at Saturn in July 2004, initially discovered three small inner moons: Methone and Pallene between Mimas and Enceladus, and the second trojan moon of Dione – Polydeuces. It also observed three suspected but unconfirmed moons in the F Ring.[23] In November 2004 Cassini scientists announced that the structure of Saturn's rings indicates the presence of several more moons orbiting within the rings, although only one, Daphnis, had been visually confirmed at the time.[24] In 2007 Anthe was announced.[25] In 2008 it was reported that Cassini observations of a depletion of energetic electrons in Saturn's magnetosphere near Rhea might be the signature of a tenuous ring system around Saturn's second largest moon.[26] In March 2009, Aegaeon, a moonlet within the G Ring, was announced.[27] In July of the same year, S/2009 S 1, the first moonlet within the B Ring, was observed.[28] In April 2014, the possible beginning of a new moon, within the A Ring, was reported.[29] (related image)

Outer moons

Quadruple Saturn–moon transit captured by the Hubble Space Telescope

Study of Saturn's moons has also been aided by advances in telescope instrumentation, primarily the introduction of digital charge-coupled devices which replaced photographic plates. For the 20th century, Phoebe stood alone among Saturn's known moons with its highly irregular orbit. Then in 2000, three dozen additional irregular moons were discovered using ground-based telescopes.[30] A survey starting in late 2000 and conducted using three medium-size telescopes found thirteen new moons orbiting Saturn at a great distance, in eccentric orbits, which are highly inclined to both the equator of Saturn and the ecliptic.[31] They are probably fragments of larger bodies captured by Saturn's gravitational pull.[30][31] In 2005, astronomers using the Mauna Kea Observatory announced the discovery of twelve more small outer moons,[32][33] in 2006, astronomers using the Subaru 8.2 m telescope reported the discovery of nine more irregular moons,[34] in April 2007, Tarqeq (S/2007 S 1) was announced and in May of the same year S/2007 S 2 and S/2007 S 3 were reported.[35] In 2019, twenty new irregular satellites of Saturn were reported, resulting in Saturn overtaking Jupiter as the planet with the most known moons for the first time since 2000.[13][3]

In 2019, researchers Edward Ashton, Brett Gladman, and Matthew Beaudoin conducted a survey of Saturn's Hill sphere using the 3.6-meter Canada–France–Hawaii Telescope and discovered about 80 new Saturnian irregular moons.[5][36] Follow-up observations of these new moons took place over 2019–2021, eventually leading to S/2019 S 1 being announced in November 2021 and an additional 62 moons being announced from 3–16 May 2023.[37][2] These discoveries brought Saturn's total number of confirmed moons up to 145, making it the first planet known to have over 100 moons.[37][38][39] Yet another moon, S/2006 S 20, was announced on 23 May 2023, bringing Saturn's total count moons to 146.[2] All of these new moons are small and faint, with diameters over 3 km (2 mi) and apparent magnitudes of 25–27.[5] The researchers found that the Saturnian irregular moon population is more abundant at smaller sizes, suggesting that they are likely fragments from a collision that occurred a few hundred million years ago. The researchers extrapolated that the true population of Saturnian irregular moons larger than 2.8 km (1.7 mi) in diameter amounts to 150±30, which is approximately three times as many Jovian irregular moons down to the same size. If this size distribution applies to even smaller diameters, Saturn would therefore intrinsically have more irregular moons than Jupiter.[5]

Discovery of outer planet moons

Graphs are unavailable due to technical issues. There is more info on Phabricator and on MediaWiki.org.
  Moons of Jupiter
  Moons of Saturn
  Moons of Uranus
  Moons of Neptune

Naming

Main article: Naming of moons

The modern names for Saturnian moons were suggested by John Herschel in 1847.[16] He proposed to name them after mythological figures associated with the Roman god of agriculture and harvest, Saturn (equated to the Greek Cronus).[16] In particular, the then known seven satellites were named after Titans, Titanesses and Giants—brothers and sisters of Cronus.[19] The idea was similar to Simon Marius' mythological naming scheme for the moons of Jupiter.[40]

As Saturn devoured his children, his family could not be assembled around him, so that the choice lay among his brothers and sister, the Titans and Titanesses. The name Iapetus seemed indicated by the obscurity and remoteness of the exterior satellite, Titan by the superior size of the Huyghenian, while the three female appellations [Rhea, Dione, and Tethys] class together the three intermediate Cassinian satellites. The minute interior ones seemed appropriately characterized by a return to male appellations [Enceladus and Mimas] chosen from a younger and inferior (though still superhuman) brood. ["Results of the Astronomical Observations made...at the Cape of Good Hope," p. 415]

In 1848, Lassell proposed that the eighth satellite of Saturn be named Hyperion after another Titan.[18][40] When in the 20th century the names of Titans were exhausted, the moons were named after different characters of the Greco-Roman mythology or giants from other mythologies.[41] All the irregular moons (except Phoebe, discovered about a century before the others) are named after Inuit and Gallic gods and after Norse ice giants.[42]

Some asteroids share the same names as moons of Saturn: 55 Pandora, 106 Dione, 577 Rhea, 1809 Prometheus, 1810 Epimetheus, and 4450 Pan. In addition, three more asteroids would share the names of Saturnian moons but for spelling differences made permanent by the International Astronomical Union (IAU): Calypso and asteroid 53 Kalypso; Helene and asteroid 101 Helena; and Gunnlod and asteroid 657 Gunlöd.

Physical characteristics

Saturn's satellite system is very lopsided: one moon, Titan, comprises more than 96% of the mass in orbit around the planet. The six other planemo (ellipsoidal) moons constitute roughly 4% of the mass, and the remaining small moons, together with the rings, comprise only 0.04%.[b]

Graphs are unavailable due to technical issues. There is more info on Phabricator and on MediaWiki.org.
Graphs are unavailable due to technical issues. There is more info on Phabricator and on MediaWiki.org.
The relative masses of Saturn's moons. Values are ×1021 kg. With Titan in the comparison (left), Mimas and Enceladus are invisible at this scale. Even excluding Titan (right), Phoebe, Hyperion, the smaller moons and the rings are invisible.
Saturn's major satellites, compared with the Moon
Name
Diameter
(km)[43]
Mass
(kg)[44]
Orbital radius
(km)[45]
Orbital period
(days)[45]
Mimas 396
(0.12 D)
4×1019
(0.0005 M)
185,539
(0.48 a)
0.9
(0.03 T)
Enceladus 504
(0.14 D)
1.1×1020
(0.002 M)
237,948
(0.62 a)
1.4
(0.05 T)
Tethys 1,062
(0.30 D)
6.2×1020
(0.008 M)
294,619
(0.77 a)
1.9
(0.07 T)
Dione 1,123
(0.32 D)
1.1×1021
(0.015 M)
377,396
(0.98 a)
2.7
(0.10 T)
Rhea 1,527
(0.44 D)
2.3×1021
(0.03 M)
527,108
(1.37 a)
4.5
(0.20 T)
Titan 5,149
(1.48 D)
(0.75 D)
1.35×1023
(1.80 M)
(0.21 M)
1,221,870
(3.18 a)
16
(0.60 T)
Iapetus 1,470
(0.42 D)
1.8×1021
(0.025 M)
3,560,820
(9.26 a)
79
(2.90 T)

Orbital groups

Although the boundaries may be somewhat vague, Saturn's moons can be divided into ten groups according to their orbital characteristics. Many of them, such as Pan and Daphnis, orbit within Saturn's ring system and have orbital periods only slightly longer than the planet's rotation period.[46] The innermost moons and most regular satellites all have mean orbital inclinations ranging from less than a degree to about 1.5 degrees (except Iapetus, which has an inclination of 7.57 degrees) and small orbital eccentricities.[3] On the other hand, irregular satellites in the outermost regions of Saturn's moon system, in particular the Norse group, have orbital radii of millions of kilometers and orbital periods lasting several years. The moons of the Norse group also orbit in the opposite direction to Saturn's rotation.[42]

Inner moons

Ring moonlets

Saturn's F Ring along with the moons, Enceladus and Rhea
Sequence of Cassini images of Aegaeon embedded within the bright arc of Saturn's G Ring

During late July 2009, a moonlet, S/2009 S 1, was discovered in the B Ring, 480 km from the outer edge of the ring, by the shadow it cast.[28] It is estimated to be 300 m in diameter. Unlike the A Ring moonlets (see below), it does not induce a 'propeller' feature, probably due to the density of the B Ring.[47]

In 2006, four tiny moonlets were found in Cassini images of the A Ring.[48] Before this discovery only two larger moons had been known within gaps in the A Ring: Pan and Daphnis. These are large enough to clear continuous gaps in the ring.[48] In contrast, a moonlet is only massive enough to clear two small—about 10 km across—partial gaps in the immediate vicinity of the moonlet itself creating a structure shaped like an airplane propeller.[49] The moonlets themselves are tiny, ranging from about 40 to 500 meters in diameter, and are too small to be seen directly.[4]

Possible beginning of a new moon of Saturn imaged on 15 April 2014

In 2007, the discovery of 150 more moonlets revealed that they (with the exception of two that have been seen outside the Encke gap) are confined to three narrow bands in the A Ring between 126,750 and 132,000 km from Saturn's center. Each band is about a thousand kilometers wide, which is less than 1% the width of Saturn's rings.[4] This region is relatively free from the disturbances caused by resonances with larger satellites,[4] although other areas of the A Ring without disturbances are apparently free of moonlets. The moonlets were probably formed from the breakup of a larger satellite.[49] It is estimated that the A Ring contains 7,000–8,000 propellers larger than 0.8 km in size and millions larger than 0.25 km.[4] In April 2014, NASA scientists reported the possible consolidation of a new moon within the A Ring, implying that Saturn's present moons may have formed in a similar process in the past when Saturn's ring system was much more massive.[29]

Similar moonlets may reside in the F Ring.[4] There, "jets" of material may be due to collisions, initiated by perturbations from the nearby small moon Prometheus, of these moonlets with the core of the F Ring. One of the largest F Ring moonlets may be the as-yet unconfirmed object S/2004 S 6. The F Ring also contains transient "fans" which are thought to result from even smaller moonlets, about 1 km in diameter, orbiting near the F Ring core.[50]

One recently discovered moon, Aegaeon, resides within the bright arc of G Ring and is trapped in the 7:6 mean-motion resonance with Mimas.[27] This means that it makes exactly seven revolutions around Saturn while Mimas makes exactly six. The moon is the largest among the population of bodies that are sources of dust in this ring.[51]

Ring shepherds

Shepherd moon Daphnis in the Keeler gap
From top to bottom, Atlas, Daphnis and Pan (enhanced color). They bear distinct equatorial ridges that appear to have formed from material accreted from Saturn's rings.

Shepherd satellites are small moons that orbit within, or just beyond, a planet's ring system. They have the effect of sculpting the rings: giving them sharp edges, and creating gaps between them. Saturn's shepherd moons are Pan (Encke gap), Daphnis (Keeler gap), Prometheus (F Ring), Janus (A Ring), and Epimetheus (A Ring).[23][27] These moons probably formed as a result of accretion of the friable ring material on preexisting denser cores. The cores with sizes from one-third to one-half the present-day moons may be themselves collisional shards formed when a parental satellite of the rings disintegrated.[46]

Janus and Epimetheus are co-orbital moons.[21] They are of similar size, with Janus being somewhat larger than Epimetheus.[46] They have orbits with less than a 100-kilometer difference in semi-major axis, close enough that they would collide if they attempted to pass each other. Instead of colliding, their gravitational interaction causes them to swap orbits every four years.[52]

Other inner moons

Other inner moons that are neither ring shepherds nor ring moonlets include Atlas and Pandora.

Inner large

A circular part of a grayish surface, which is intersected from the top-left to the bottom-right by four wide sinuous groves. Smaller and shorter grooves can be seen between them running either parallel to the large grooves or criss-crossing them. There is a rough terrain in the top-left corner.
South pole map of tiger stripes on Enceladus
Saturn's rings and moons
Saturn's moons from bottom to top: Mimas, Enceladus, and Tethys
Tethys and the rings of Saturn
Color view of Dione in front of Saturn

The innermost large moons of Saturn orbit within its tenuous E Ring, along with three smaller moons of the Alkyonides group.

Alkyonides

Three small moons orbit between Mimas and Enceladus: Methone, Anthe, and Pallene. Named after the Alkyonides of Greek mythology, they are some of the smallest moons in the Saturn system. Anthe and Methone have very faint ring arcs along their orbits, whereas Pallene has a faint complete ring.[60] Of these three moons, only Methone has been photographed at close range, showing it to be egg-shaped with very few or no craters.[61]

Trojan

Main article: Trojan moon

Trojan moons are a unique feature only known from the Saturnian system. A trojan body orbits at either the leading L4 or trailing L5 Lagrange point of a much larger object, such as a large moon or planet. Tethys has two trojan moons, Telesto (leading) and Calypso (trailing), and Dione also has two, Helene (leading) and Polydeuces (trailing).[23] Helene is by far the largest trojan moon,[53] while Polydeuces is the smallest and has the most chaotic orbit.[52] These moons are coated with dusty material that has smoothed out their surfaces.[62]

Outer large

Saturn's outer large moons
A spherical body is almost fully illuminated. Its grayish surface is covered by numerous circular craters. The terminator is located near the upper-right limb. A large crater can be seen near the limb in the upper-left part of the body. Another smaller bright crater can be seen in the center. It is surrounded by a large bright patch having the shape of a five-pointed star.
Inktomi or "The Splat", a relatively young crater with prominent butterfly-shaped ejecta on Rhea's leading hemisphere
Titan in front of Dione and the rings of Saturn
An irregularly-shaped and heavily cratered body, pock-marked with dark pits and ridges on its tan-colored icy surface.
Cassini image of Hyperion
A part of a spherical body illuminated from the above and behind. The convex limb runs from the lower-left to the upper-right corner. The black outer space is in the upper-left corner. The terminator is near the bottom. The surface of the body is covered with numerous craters. A large ridge runs in the center from the top to bottom.
Equatorial ridge on Iapetus

These moons all orbit beyond the E Ring. They are:

Irregular

Diagram illustrating the orbits of the irregular satellites of Saturn (with Titan and Iapetus included for comparison). The inclination and semi-major axis are represented on the Y and X-axis, respectively. The satellites with inclinations below 90° are prograde, those above 90° are retrograde. The X-axis is labeled in terms of Saturn's Hill radius. The prograde Inuit and Gallic groups and the retrograde Norse group are identified.
Orbits and positions of Saturn's 122 irregular moons as of 25 February 2023. Prograde orbits are colored blue while retrograde orbits are colored red. Saturn's outermost regular moons, Titan, Hyperion, and Iapetus, are also shown with turquoise orbits.

Irregular moons are small satellites with large-radii, inclined, and frequently retrograde orbits, believed to have been acquired by the parent planet through a capture process. They often occur as collisional families or groups.[30] The precise size as well as albedo of the irregular moons are not known for sure because the moons are very small to be resolved by a telescope, although the latter is usually assumed to be quite low—around 6% (albedo of Phoebe) or less.[31] The irregulars generally have featureless visible and near infrared spectra dominated by water absorption bands.[30] They are neutral or moderately red in color—similar to C-type, P-type, or D-type asteroids,[42] though they are much less red than Kuiper belt objects.[30][d]

Inuit

Main article: Inuit group

The Inuit group includes twelve prograde outer moons that are similar enough in their distances from the planet (190–300 radii of Saturn), their orbital inclinations (45–50°) and their colors that they can be considered a group.[31][42] The Inuit group is further split into three distinct subgroups at different semi-major axes, and are named after their respective largest members. Ordered by increasing semi-major axis, these subgroups are the Kiviuq group, the Paaliaq group, and the Siarnaq group.[1] The Kiviuq group includes five members: Kiviuq, Ijiraq, S/2005 S 4, S/2019 S 1, and S/2020 S 1. The Siarnaq group includes six members: Siarnaq, Tarqeq, S/2004 S 31, S/2019 S 14, S/2020 S 3, and S/2020 S 5.[84] In contrast to the Kiviuq and Siarnaq subgroups, the Paaliaq subgroup does not contain any other known members besides Paaliaq itself.[1] Of the entire Inuit group, Siarnaq is the largest member with an estimated size of about 40 km.[85]

Gallic

Main article: Gallic group

The Gallic group includes seven prograde outer moons that are similar enough in their distance from the planet (200–300 radii of Saturn), their orbital inclination (35–40°) and their color that they can be considered a group.[31][42] They are Albiorix, Bebhionn, Erriapus, Tarvos,[42] Saturn LX,[86] S/2007 S 8, and S/2020 S 4.[84] The largest of these moons is Albiorix with an estimated size of about 32 km.[85]

Norse

Main article: Norse group

All 100 retrograde outer moons of Saturn are broadly classified into the Norse group.[31][42] They are Aegir, Angrboda, Alvaldi, Beli, Bergelmir, Bestla, Eggther, Farbauti, Fenrir, Fornjot, Geirrod, Gerd, Greip, Gridr, Gunnlod, Hati, Hyrrokkin, Jarnsaxa, Kari, Loge, Mundilfari, Narvi, Phoebe, Skathi, Skoll, Skrymir, Surtur, Suttungr, Thiazzi, Thrymr, Ymir,[42] and 69 unnamed satellites. After Phoebe, Ymir is the largest of the known retrograde irregular moons, with an estimated diameter of only 18 km.[1]

Outlier prograde satellites

Three prograde moons of Saturn do not definitively belong to either the Inuit or Gallic groups.[1] S/2004 S 24 and S/2006 S 12 have similar orbital inclinations as the Gallic group, but have much more distant orbits with semi-major axes of ~400 Saturn radii and ~340 Saturn radii, respectively.[84][13][1] Whether S/2019 S 6 is in the Gallic group or Inuit group is disputed.[e]

List

Orbital diagram of the orbital inclination and orbital distances for Saturn's rings and moon system at various scales. Notable moons, moon groups, and rings are individually labeled. Open the image for full resolution.

Confirmed

The Saturnian moons are listed here by orbital period (or semi-major axis), from shortest to longest. Moons massive enough for their surfaces to have collapsed into a spheroid are highlighted in bold and marked with a blue background, while the irregular moons are listed in red, orange, green, and gray background. The orbits and mean distances of the irregular moons are strongly variable over short timescales due to frequent planetary and solar perturbations, so the orbital elements of irregular moons listed here are averaged over a 5,000-year numerical integration by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. These may sometimes strongly differ from the osculating orbital elements provided by other sources.[84][86] Their orbital elements are all based on a reference epoch of 1 January 2000.[84]

Key
 
Small regular moons

Major moons

Inuit group

Gallic group

Norse group
§
Outlier prograde irregular moons
Label
[f]
Name Pronunciation Image Abs.
magn.
[g]
Diameter
(km)[h]
Mass
(×1015 kg)[i]
Semi-major
axis

(km)[j]
Orbital period (d)[j][k] Inclination
(°)
[j][l]
Eccentricity[j] Position Discovery
year
[95]
Year announced Discoverer[41][95]
S/2009 S 1
0.3 ≈ 0.0000071 116900 0.47150 ≈ 0.0 ≈ 0.000 outer B Ring 2009 2009 Cassini[28]
(moonlets)
A noisy image showing a few bright dots marked by circles
0.04–0.4 < 0.000017 ≈ 130000 ≈ 0.55 ≈ 0.0 ≈ 0.000 Three 1,000 km bands within A Ring[4] 2006 Cassini
XVIII Pan /ˈpæn/
An irregularly shaped body with a prominent equatorial ridge. It is illuminated from the bottom right.
9.2 27.4
(34.6 × 28.2 × 21.0)
4.30 133600 +0.57505 0.0 0.000 in Encke Division 1990 1990 Showalter
XXXV Daphnis /ˈdæfnəs/
A small, irregularly shaped body elongated from the bottom left to top right. It is illuminated from the bottom left.
7.8
(9.8 × 8.4 × 5.6)
0.068 136500 +0.59408 0.0 0.000 in Keeler Gap 2005 2005 Cassini
XV Atlas /ˈætləs/
An irregularly shaped body is fully illuminated. The body, which looks like a cone viewed from the south pole, is elongated downward.
8.5 29.8
(40.8 × 35.4 × 18.6)
5.490 137700 +0.60460 0.0 0.001 1980 1980 Voyager 1
XVI Prometheus /prˈmθiəs/
An irregularly shaped oblong body is fully illuminated. It is elongated in the direction from the top left to bottom left. Its surface is covered by craters.
6.7 85.6
(137 × 81 × 56)
159.72 139400 +0.61588 0.0 0.002 F Ring shepherd 1980 1980 Voyager 1
XVII Pandora /pænˈdɔːrə/
An irregularly shaped body is half illuminated from the bottom. The terminator runs from the left to right. The surface is covered by numerous craters.
6.5 80.0
(103 × 79 × 63)
135.7 141700 +0.63137 0.0 0.004 1980 1980 Voyager 1
XI Epimetheus /ɛpəˈmθiəs/
A partially-illuminated irregular body, which has a shape remotely resembling a cube. The body's surface consists of ridges and valleys and is covered by craters.
5.5 117.2
(130 × 116 × 107)
525.607 151400 +0.69701 0.3 0.020 co-orbital with Janus 1966 1967 Fountain & Larson
X Janus /ˈnəs/ An irregular body, whose outline looks like an approximate circle in this image. It is illuminated from the bottom-left. The terminator runs from the top-left to bottom-right. The surface is covered by craters. 4.5 178.0
(203 × 186 × 149)
1893.88 151500 +0.69735 0.2 0.007 co-orbital with Epimetheus 1966 1967 Dollfus
LIII Aegaeon /ˈɒn/
Image of Aegaeon by Cassini.
0.66
(1.4 × 0.5 × 0.4)
0.0000782 167500 +0.80812 0.0 0.000 G Ring moonlet 2008 2009 Cassini
I Mimas /ˈmməs/
A spherical body is half illuminated from the left. The terminator runs from the top to bottom in the vicinity of the right limb. A large crater with a central peak sits on the terminator slightly to the right and above the center of the body. It makes the body look like the Death Star. There are numerous smaller craters.
3.2 396.4
(416 × 393 × 381)
37509.4 186000 +0.94242 1.6 0.020   1789 1789 Herschel
XXXII Methone /məˈθn/
A smooth, featureless ellipsoidal object illuminated from the top right, distinctly looking like an egg.
2.90
(3.88 × 2.58 × 2.42)
0.00392 194700 +1.00955 0.0 0.002 Alkyonides 2004 2004 Cassini
XLIX Anthe /ˈænθ/
A blurry ellipsoidal object in the center of the image
1.8 ≈ 0.0015 198100 +1.03890 0.0 0.002 Alkyonides 2007 2007 Cassini
XXXIII Pallene /pəˈln/
A small, half-illuminated ellipsoidal object in front of Saturn as a backdrop
4.46
(5.76 × 4.16 × 3.68)
≈ 0.023 212300 +1.15606 0.2 0.004 Alkyonides 2004 2004 Cassini
II Enceladus /ɛnˈsɛlədəs/
2.1 504.2
(513 × 503 × 497)
108031.8 238400 +1.37022 0.0 0.005 Generates the E ring 1789 1789 Herschel
III Tethys /ˈtθəs/
0.7 1062.2
(1077 × 1057 × 1053)
617495.9 295000 +1.88780 1.1 0.001   1684 1684 Cassini
XIII Telesto /təˈlɛst/
An oblong object with a few large craters and a smooth surface
8.7 24.6
(33.2 × 23.4 × 19.2)
≈ 3.9 295000 +1.88780 1.2 0.001 leading Tethys trojan (L4) 1980 1980 Smith et al.
XIV Calypso /kəˈlɪps/
An oblong body is seen in this low resolution image.
9.2 19.0
(29.4 × 18.6 × 12.8)
≈ 1.8 295000 +1.88780 1.5 0.001 trailing Tethys trojan (L5) 1980 1980 Pascu et al.
XII Helene /ˈhɛlən/
An irregularly shaped body illuminated from the left. Its surface is covered by numerous impact craters.
8.2 36.2
(45.2 × 39.2 × 26.6)
7.1 377600 +2.73692 0.2 0.007 leading Dione trojan (L4) 1980 1980 Laques & Lecacheux
XXXIV Polydeuces /pɒliˈdjsz/
A small oblong body is barely resolved in this image.
3.06
(3.50 × 3.10 × 2.62)
≈ 0.0075 377600 +2.73692 0.2 0.019 trailing Dione trojan (L5) 2004 2004 Cassini
IV Dione /dˈn/
0.8 1122.8
(1128 × 1123 × 1119)
1095486.8 377700 +2.73692 0.0 0.002   1684 1684 Cassini
V Rhea /ˈrə/
0.1 1527.6
(1530 × 1526 × 1525)
2306485.4 527200 +4.51750 0.3 0.001   1672 1673 Cassini
VI Titan /ˈttən/
–1.3 5149.46
(5149 × 5149 × 5150)
134518035.4 1221900 +15.9454 0.3 0.029   1655 1656 Huygens
VII Hyperion /hˈpɪəriən/
An irregularly shaped oblong body is illuminated from the left. The terminator is near the right limb. The body is elongated in the top-bottom direction. The surface is punctured by numerous impact craters, which make it look like a sponge or cheese.
4.8 270.0
(360 × 266 × 205)
5551.0 1481500 +21.2767 0.6 0.105 in 4:3 resonance with Titan 1848 1848 Bond & Lassell
VIII Iapetus /ˈæpətəs/
1.2 1468.6
(1491 × 1491 × 1424)
1805659.1 3561700 +79.3310 7.6 0.028   1671 1673 Cassini
S/2019 S 1
15.3 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 11245400 +445.51 49.5 0.384 Inuit group (Kiviuq) 2019 2021 Ashton et al.
XXIV Kiviuq /ˈkɪviək/
12.7 ≈ 19 ≈ 3.6 11307300 +449.13 48.9 0.182 Inuit group (Kiviuq) 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
S/2005 S 4 15.7 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 11324500 +450.22 48.0 0.315 Inuit group (Kiviuq) 2005 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2020 S 1 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 11338700 +451.10 48.2 0.337 Inuit group (Kiviuq) 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
XXII Ijiraq /ˈɪrɒk/
13.3 ≈ 15 ≈ 1.8 11344600 +451.46 49.2 0.353 Inuit group (Kiviuq) 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
IX Phoebe /ˈfbi/
An approximately spherical heavily cratered body is illuminated from the bottom-right. The terminator runs near the left and top limbs. There is huge crater at the top, which affects the shape, and another slightly smaller at the bottom.
6.7 213.0
(219 × 217 × 204)
8312.3 12929400 −550.30 175.2 0.164 Norse group (Phoebe) 1898 1899 Pickering
S/2006 S 20 15.7 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 13193800 −567.27 173.1 0.206 Norse group (Phoebe) 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 9 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 14406600 −647.89 173.0 0.248 Norse group (Phoebe) 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
XX Paaliaq /ˈpɑːliɒk/
11.7 ≈ 30 ≈ 14 14997300 +687.08 47.1 0.384 Inuit group (Paaliaq) 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
XXVII Skathi /ˈskɑːði/
14.4 ≈ 9 ≈ 0.38 15575100 −728.10 149.7 0.265 Norse group 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
S/2007 S 5 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 15835700 −746.88 158.4 0.104 Norse group 2007 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2007 S 7 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 15931700 −754.29 169.2 0.217 Norse group 2007 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2007 S 2 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 15939100 −754.90 174.1 0.232 Norse group 2007 2007 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 37 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 15940400 −754.48 158.2 0.447 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 47 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 16050600 −762.49 160.9 0.291 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 40 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 16075600 −764.60 169.2 0.297 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
XXVI Albiorix /ˌælbiˈɒrɪks/
11.2 28.6 ≈ 12 16329100 +783.49 38.9 0.470 Gallic group 2000 2000 Holman
S/2019 S 2 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 16559900 −799.82 173.3 0.279 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
XXXVII Bebhionn /ˈbvɪn/
15.0 ≈ 7 ≈ 0.18 17028900 +834.94 37.4 0.482 Gallic group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2007 S 8 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 17049000 +836.90 36.2 0.490 Gallic group 2007 2023 Sheppard et al.
LX S/2004 S 29 15.8 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 17063900 +837.78 38.6 0.485 Gallic group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 3 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 17077200 −837.74 166.9 0.249 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2020 S 7 16.8 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 17400000 −861.70 161.5 0.500 Norse group 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 31 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 17497300 +866.10 48.1 0.159 Inuit group (Siarnaq) 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
XXVIII Erriapus /ɛriˈæpəs/
13.7 ≈ 12 ≈ 0.95 17507200 +871.10 38.7 0.462 Gallic group 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
XLVII Skoll /ˈskɒl/
15.4 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 17625700 −878.44 158.4 0.470 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
LII Tarqeq /ˈtɑːrkk/
14.8 ≈ 7 ≈ 0.18 17748200 +884.98 49.7 0.119 Inuit group (Siarnaq) 2007 2007 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 14 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 17853000 +893.14 46.2 0.172 Inuit group (Siarnaq) 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2020 S 2 16.9 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 17869300 −897.60 170.7 0.152 Norse group 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
XXIX Siarnaq /ˈsɑːrnək/
10.6 39.3 ≈ 32 17880800 +895.87 48.2 0.311 Inuit group (Siarnaq) 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
S/2019 S 4 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 17956700 −904.26 170.1 0.409 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2020 S 3 16.4 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 18054700 +907.99 46.1 0.144 Inuit group (Siarnaq) 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 41 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 18095000 −914.61 165.7 0.300 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
XXI Tarvos /ˈtɑːrvəs/
13.1 ≈ 16 ≈ 2.1 18215100 +926.37 38.6 0.528 Gallic group 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
S/2020 S 4 17.0 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 18235500 +926.92 40.1 0.495 Gallic group 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 42 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 18240800 −925.91 165.7 0.158 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
XLIV Hyrrokkin /hɪˈrɒkən/
14.3 ≈ 9 ≈ 0.38 18342600 −931.89 150.3 0.331 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
LI Greip /ˈɡrp/
15.3 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 18380400 −936.98 173.4 0.317 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
S/2020 S 5 16.6 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 18391300 +933.88 48.2 0.220 Inuit group (Siarnaq) 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 13 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 18453300 −942.57 169.0 0.265 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2007 S 6 16.4 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 18544900 −949.50 166.5 0.169 Norse group 2007 2023 Sheppard et al.
XXV Mundilfari /mʊndəlˈværi/
14.6 ≈ 8 ≈ 0.27 18590300 −952.95 168.4 0.210 Norse group 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
S/2006 S 1 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 18745000 −964.14 156.0 0.105 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 43 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 18935000 −980.08 171.1 0.432 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 10 16.4 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 18979900 −983.14 161.6 0.151 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 5 16.6 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 19076900 −990.38 158.8 0.215 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
LIV Gridr /ˈɡrðər/ 15.8 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 19250700 −1004.75 163.9 0.187 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
XXXVIII Bergelmir /bɛərˈjɛlmɪər/
15.2 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 19269100 −1005.58 158.7 0.144 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
L Jarnsaxa /jɑːrnˈsæksə/ 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 19279700 −1006.92 163.0 0.219 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
XXXI Narvi /ˈnɑːrvi/
14.5 ≈ 8 ≈ 0.27 19286500 −1003.84 143.7 0.449 Norse group 2003 2003 Sheppard et al.
XXIII Suttungr /ˈsʊtʊŋɡər/
14.6 ≈ 8 ≈ 0.27 19391700 −1016.71 175.0 0.116 Norse group 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
S/2007 S 3 15.7 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 19513700 −1026.35 175.6 0.162 Norse group 2007 2007 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 44 15.8 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 19515400 −1026.16 167.7 0.129 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
§S/2006 S 12 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 19569800 +1035.05 38.6 0.542 Gallic group?[m] 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 45 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 19693600 −1038.70 154.0 0.551 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
XLIII Hati /ˈhɑːti/
15.4 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 19697100 −1040.29 164.1 0.375 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 17 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 19699300 −1040.86 167.9 0.162 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 11 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 19711900 −1042.28 174.1 0.144 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 12 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 19801200 −1048.57 164.7 0.337 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
LIX Eggther /ˈɛɡθɛər/ 15.4 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 19844700 −1052.33 165.0 0.157 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 13 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 19953800 −1060.63 162.0 0.313 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
§S/2019 S 6 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20048600 +1066.40 41.3 0.259 Inuit/Gallic group[e] 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2007 S 9 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20174600 −1078.07 159.3 0.360 Norse group 2007 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 7 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20181300 −1080.29 174.2 0.232 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2019 S 8 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20284400 −1088.68 172.8 0.311 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
XL Farbauti /fɑːrˈbti/ 15.8 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 20292500 −1087.29 157.7 0.248 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
XXX Thrymr /ˈθrɪmər/
14.3 ≈ 9 ≈ 0.38 20326500 −1091.84 174.8 0.467 Norse group 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
XXXIX Bestla /ˈbɛstlə/
14.6 ≈ 8 ≈ 0.27 20337900 −1087.46 136.3 0.461 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 9 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20359000 −1093.11 159.5 0.433 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 46 16.4 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 20513000 −1107.58 177.2 0.249 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
LV Angrboda /ˈɑːŋɡərbðə/ 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20591000 −1114.05 177.4 0.216 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 11 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20663700 −1115.00 144.6 0.513 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
XXXVI Aegir /ˈ.ɪər/ 15.5 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 20664600 −1119.33 166.9 0.255 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
LXI Beli /ˈbli/ 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20703800 −1121.76 158.9 0.087 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 10 16.7 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 20713400 −1123.04 163.9 0.249 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2019 S 12 16.3 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20904500 −1138.85 167.1 0.476 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
LVII Gerd /ˈjɛərð/ 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 20947500 −1142.97 174.4 0.517 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 13 16.7 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 20965800 −1144.92 177.3 0.318 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2006 S 14 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 21062100 −1152.68 166.7 0.060 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
LXII Gunnlod /ˈɡʊnlɒð/ 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 21141900 −1157.98 160.4 0.251 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 15 16.6 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 21189700 −1161.54 157.7 0.257 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2020 S 6 16.6 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 21265300 −1168.86 166.9 0.481 Norse group 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 7 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 21328200 −1173.93 164.9 0.511 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 3 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 21353000 −1174.76 156.1 0.432 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
S/2005 S 5 16.4 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 21366200 −1177.82 169.5 0.588 Norse group 2005 2023 Sheppard et al.
LVI Skrymir /ˈskrɪmɪər/ 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 21448000 −1185.15 175.6 0.437 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 16 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 21720700 −1207.52 164.1 0.204 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 15 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 21799400 −1213.96 161.1 0.117 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 28 15.8 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 21865900 −1220.68 167.9 0.159 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2020 S 8 16.4 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 21966700 −1228.12 161.8 0.252 Norse group 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
LXV Alvaldi /ɔːlˈvɔːldi/ 15.6 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 21995600 −1232.19 177.4 0.238 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
XLV Kari /ˈkɑːri/
14.5 ≈ 8 ≈ 0.27 22029700 −1231.01 153.0 0.482 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 48 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 22136700 −1242.40 161.9 0.374 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
LXVI Geirrod /ˈjrɒd/ 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 22259500 −1251.14 154.4 0.539 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
XLI Fenrir /ˈfɛnrɪər/ 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 22331800 −1260.25 164.3 0.136 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 50 16.4 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 22346000 −1260.44 164.0 0.450 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 17 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 22384900 −1264.58 168.7 0.425 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 49 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 22399700 −1264.25 159.7 0.453 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 17 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 22724100 −1291.39 155.5 0.546 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
XLVIII Surtur /ˈsɜːrtər/ 15.8 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 22753800 −1296.49 168.3 0.449 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
S/2006 S 18 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 22760700 −1298.40 169.5 0.131 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
XLVI Loge /ˈlɔɪ./
15.4 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 22918300 −1311.83 166.9 0.192 Norse group 2006 2006 Sheppard et al.
XIX Ymir /ˈmɪər/
12.4 ≈ 22 ≈ 5.6 22957100 −1315.16 173.1 0.337 Norse group 2000 2000 Gladman et al.
S/2019 S 19 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 23047200 −1318.05 151.8 0.458 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 21 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 23123500 −1325.43 153.2 0.394 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 18 16.6 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 23140700 −1327.06 154.6 0.509 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 39 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 23195400 −1336.17 165.9 0.101 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 16 16.7 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 23266700 −1341.17 162.0 0.250 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 53 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 23279800 −1342.44 162.6 0.240 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
§S/2004 S 24 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 23338900 +1341.33 37.4 0.071 Gallic group?[m] 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 36 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 23430300 −1352.93 153.3 0.625 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
LXIII Thiazzi /θiˈætsi/ 15.9 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 23577500 −1366.68 158.8 0.511 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 20 16.7 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 23678600 −1375.45 156.1 0.354 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2006 S 19 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 23801100 −1389.33 175.5 0.467 Norse group 2006 2023 Sheppard et al.
LXIV S/2004 S 34 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 24145500 −1420.77 168.3 0.279 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
XLII Fornjot /ˈfɔːrnjɒt/
15.1 ≈ 6 ≈ 0.11 24937300 −1494.03 169.5 0.214 Norse group 2004 2005 Sheppard et al.
S/2004 S 51 16.1 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 25208200 −1519.43 171.2 0.201 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.
S/2020 S 10 16.9 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 25314800 −1527.22 165.6 0.295 Norse group 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2020 S 9 16.0 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 25434100 −1534.97 161.4 0.531 Norse group 2020 2023 Ashton et al.
LVIII S/2004 S 26 15.7 ≈ 5 ≈ 0.065 26097100 −1603.95 172.9 0.148 Norse group 2004 2019 Sheppard et al.
S/2019 S 21 16.2 ≈ 4 ≈ 0.034 26439000 −1636.32 171.9 0.155 Norse group 2019 2023 Ashton et al.
S/2004 S 52 16.5 ≈ 3 ≈ 0.014 26448100 −1633.98 165.3 0.292 Norse group 2004 2023 Sheppard et al.

Unconfirmed

These F Ring moonlets listed in the following table (observed by Cassini) have not been confirmed as solid bodies. It is not yet clear if these are real satellites or merely persistent clumps within the F Ring.[23]

Name Image Diameter (km) Semi-major
axis (km)[52]
Orbital
period (d)[52]
Position Discovery year Status
S/2004 S 3 and S 4[n] ≈ 3–5 ≈ 140300 ≈ +0.619 uncertain objects around the F Ring 2004 Were undetected in thorough imaging of the region in November 2004, making their existence improbable
S/2004 S 6 A bright narrow band runs from the top to bottom. To the right of it in the diffuse halo the is a bright small object. ≈ 3–5 ≈ 140130 +0.61801 2004 Consistently detected into 2005, may be surrounded by fine dust and have a very small physical core

Spurious

Two moons were claimed to be discovered by different astronomers but never seen again. Both moons were said to orbit between Titan and Hyperion.[96]

Hypothetical

In 2022, scientists of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology proposed the hypothetical former moon Chrysalis, using data from the Cassini–Huygens mission. Chrysalis would have orbited between Titan and Iapetus, but its orbit would have gradually become more eccentric until it was torn apart by Saturn. 99% of its mass would have been absorbed by Saturn, while the remaining 1% would have formed Saturn's rings.[97][98]

Temporary

Much like Jupiter, asteroids and comets will infrequently make close approaches to Saturn, even more infrequently becoming captured into orbit of the planet. The comet P/2020 F1 (Leonard) is calculated to have made a close approach of 978000±65000 km (608000±40000 mi) to Saturn on 8 May 1936, closer than the orbit of Titan to the planet, with an orbital eccentricity of only 1.098±0.007. The comet may have been orbiting Saturn prior to this as a temporary satellite, but difficulty modelling the non-gravitational forces makes whether or not it was indeed a temporary satellite uncertain.[99]

Other comets and asteroids may have temporarily orbited Saturn at some point, but none are presently known to have.

Formation

It is thought that the Saturnian system of Titan, mid-sized moons, and rings developed from a set-up closer to the Galilean moons of Jupiter, though the details are unclear. It has been proposed either that a second Titan-sized moon broke up, producing the rings and inner mid-sized moons,[100] or that two large moons fused to form Titan, with the collision scattering icy debris that formed the mid-sized moons.[101] On 23 June 2014, NASA claimed to have strong evidence that nitrogen in the atmosphere of Titan came from materials in the Oort cloud, associated with comets, and not from the materials that formed Saturn in earlier times.[71] Studies based on Enceladus's tidal-based geologic activity and the lack of evidence of extensive past resonances in Tethys, Dione, and Rhea's orbits suggest that the moons up to and including Rhea may be only 100 million years old.[102]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ 62 moons were announced 3–16 May, 2023: S/2020 S 1, S/2006 S 9, S/2007 S 5, S/2004 S 40, S/2019 S 2, S/2019 S 3, S/2020 S 2, S/2020 S 3, S/2019 S 4, S/2004 S 41, S/2020 S 4, S/2020 S 5, S/2007 S 6, S/2004 S 42, S/2006 S 10, S/2019 S 5, S/2004 S 43, S/2004 S 44, S/2004 S 45, S/2006 S 11, S/2006 S 12, S/2019 S 6, S/2006 S 13, S/2019 S 7, S/2019 S 8, S/2019 S 9, S/2004 S 46, S/2019 S 10, S/2004 S 47, S/2019 S 11, S/2006 S 14, S/2019 S 12, S/2020 S 6, S/2019 S 13, S/2005 S 4, S/2007 S 7, S/2007 S 8, S/2020 S 7, S/2019 S 14, S/2019 S 15, S/2005 S 5, S/2006 S 15, S/2006 S 16, S/2006 S 17, S/2004 S 48, S/2020 S 8, S/2004 S 49, S/2004 S 50, S/2006 S 18, S/2019 S 16, S/2019 S 17, S/2019 S 18, S/2019 S 19, S/2019 S 20, S/2006 S 19, S/2004 S 51, S/2020 S 9, S/2004 S 52, S/2007 S 9, S/2004 S 53, S/2020 S 10, and S/2019 S 21 which were published in MPECs 2023-J21 to 2023-K05. One more moon, S/2006 S 20, was announced on 23 May 2023, which brings the final count to 146.[2][1]
  2. ^ The mass of the rings is about the mass of Mimas,[11] whereas the combined mass of Janus, Hyperion and Phoebe—the most massive of the remaining moons—is about one-third of that. The total mass of the rings and small moons is around 5.5×1019 kg.
  3. ^ Inktomi was once known as "The Splat".[67]
  4. ^ The photometric color may be used as a proxy for the chemical composition of satellites' surfaces.
  5. ^ a b JPL's mean orbital elements suggest an inclination that is similar to those of the Gallic group; however other sources say it belongs to the Inuit group.
  6. ^ A confirmed moon is given a permanent designation by the IAU consisting of a name and a Roman numeral.[41] The eight moons that were known before 1850 are numbered in order of their distance from Saturn; the rest are numbered in the order by which they received their permanent designations. Many small moons have not yet received a permanent designation.
  7. ^ Absolute magnitudes of regular satellites are calculated from their mean diameters and geometric albedos given in NASA's Saturnian Satellite Fact Sheet.[45] Absolute magnitude estimates for some small inner moons are not available as they do not have measured geometric albedos. Absolute magnitudes of irregular satellites were taken from the Minor Planet Center's Natural Satellites Ephemeris Service.[90] Calculations were made with NASA/JPL's Asteroid Size Estimator.[91]
  8. ^ The diameters and dimensions of the small inner moons, from Pan to Helene, are taken from Thomas et al., 2020, Table 1.[92] Diameters and dimensions of Mimas, Enceladus, Tethys, Dione, Rhea, Iapetus, and Phoebe are from Thomas 2010, Table 1.[43] Diameters of Siarnaq and Albiorix are from Grav et al., 2015, Table 3.[85] The approximate sizes of all other irregular satellites are calculated from their absolute magnitudes with an assumed geometric albedo of 0.04,[91] which is the average value for that population.[85]
  9. ^ Masses of the large round moons, including Hyperion, Phoebe, and Helene, were taken from Jacobson et al., 2022, Table 5.[93] Masses of Atlas, Prometheus, Pandora, Epimetheus, and Janus were taken from Lainey et al., 2023, Table 1.[94] Masses of Pan, Daphnis, Aegaeon, Methone, and Pallene were taken from Thomas et al., 2020, Table 2.[92] Masses of other regular satellites were calculated by multiplying their volumes with an assumed density of 500 kg/m3 (0.5 g/cm3), while masses of irregular satellites were calculated with an assumed density of 1000 kg/m3 (1.0 g/cm3).
  10. ^ a b c d Time-averaged orbital elements of all satellites were taken from JPL Solar System Dynamics.[84]
  11. ^ Negative orbital periods indicate a retrograde orbit around Saturn (opposite to the planet's rotation). Orbital periods of irregular satellites may not directly correlate with their semi-major axes due to perturbations.
  12. ^ Orbital inclinations of regular satellites and Phoebe are with respect to the Laplace plane. Orbital inclinations of irregular satellites are with respect to the ecliptic.[84]
  13. ^ a b May be part of the Gallic group because it has a similar inclination; however, it has a more distant semi-major axis.[1]
  14. ^ S/2004 S 4 was most likely a transient clump—it has not been recovered since the first sighting.[23]

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