shepherd satellite

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shepherd satellite

n.
A moon that orbits near the edge of a planetary ring, constraining the ring's extent through gravitational interactions with the ring particles.
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This wouldn't be unheard of since two other moons-Ophelia and Cordelia-serve as shepherd moons for Uranus' epsilon ring.
Unless confined by the gravity from "shepherd moons," the rings would be quickly torn apart by Chariklo's gravity, collisions and radiation pressure from the sun.
Her spokesman said: "This is her fourth Grammy, she previously won Best New Age Album for Shepherd Moons in 1992, The Memory Of Trees in 1996 and A Day Without Rain in 2001."
But neither the ring nor the shepherd moons maintain circular orbits.
This was followed by two more worldwide hit albums - Shepherd Moons in 1991 and The Memory of Trees in 1995.
Her new album, A Day Without Rain - the first for five years if you discount the Paint The Sky With Stars best-of collection - certainly follows the pattern established on Watermark, Shepherd Moons and The Memory Of Trees.
We may find here an early allusion to the "shepherd moons," whose existence was confirmed by the Voyager spacecraft in the 1980s.