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Statistical mechanics of Keplerian orbits

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A statistical theory of Keplerian orbits is constructed for a system of particles, which are subject to partially elastic collisions. If the elasticity decreases with collisional velocity, the system shows an increased tendency to form condensations. Near the central body they are concentric rings, which are separated by gaps void of matter. At larger distances outside the Roche limit, the condensations probably form larger bodies. An application to Saturn's rings suggests that at least rings A and C would consist of separate ringlets.

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Hämeen-Anttila, K.A. Statistical mechanics of Keplerian orbits. Astrophys Space Sci 37, 309–333 (1975). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00640356

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  • Large Body
  • Large Distance
  • Statistical Theory
  • Statistical Mechanic
  • Central Body