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Saturn LIII

A tiny moon of Saturn with a narrow, elongated shape, Aegaeon measures just 1.4 kilometres along its longest axis. It orbits Saturn within the G Ring, one of the fine and relatively faint rings that lie beyond the more familiar bright bands of Saturn's A, B and C Rings. Indeed, the moon is thought to represent a primary source of the material that makes up the G Ring, so the moon orbits within a ring of material formed from its own debris. Aegaeon's orbit is locked into resonance with that of the much larger and more massive moon Mimas, which orbits Saturn beyond the outer edge of Aegaeon's G Ring.

The moon's physical structure is not understood in detail, but it has a smooth surface and a low density, suggesting that it is likely to be composed largely of ice. It has an usually low albedo, reflecting very little light, which may imply that the loss of its surface ices - perhaps in the creation of the thin G Ring that contains the moon - has exposed a darker, less reflective inner layer of material.


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