From a re-examination of the trajectories of small charged grains in the vicinity of the Saturnian rings, it is shown that the orbital motion of positively charged grains with a charge-to-mass ratio on the order of 10 -6 e amu-1 could allow the injection of water material into the equatorial atmosphere. Thus, a mechanism of ionospheric depletion in the equatorial region is provided, as indicated by the Cassini radio occultation measurements.
- planets and satellites: atmospheres
- planets and satellites: magnetic fields
- planets and satellites: rings