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Time lapse of Paaliaq moving along its orbit that lead to its discovery
Discovered by Brett J. Gladman et al.
Saturn XX
S/2000 S 2
Orbital characteristics
Epoch 2000 Feb. 26.00
15.200 Gm
Eccentricity 0.3631
686.9 d
(1.88 yr)
Inclination 45.083°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 22 km[2]
Albedo 0.04[2] assumed
Spectral type
B−V=0.86, R−V=0.40[3]

Paaliaq (/ˈpɑːli.ɑːk/ PAH-lee-ahk) is a prograde irregular satellite of Saturn. It was discovered by Brett J. Gladman, John J. Kavelaars, Jean-Marc Petit, Hans Scholl, Matthew J. Holman, Brian G. Marsden, Philip D. Nicholson and Joseph A. Burns in early October 2000,[4][5] and given the temporary designation S/2000 S 2. It was named in August 2003 after a fictional shaman in the book The Curse of the Shaman, written by Michael Kusugak, who supplied Kavelaars with the names of giants from Inuit mythology that were used for other Saturnian moons.

Paaliaq is thought to be about 22 kilometres in diameter, and orbits Saturn at an average distance of 15.2 million km in 687 days. It is a member of the Inuit group of irregular satellites. It also has a proximity with 9 other moons reaching up to ten miles from each.

It is light red in color, and in the infrared the Paaliapian (Paaliaqan) spectrum is very similar to the Inuit-group satellites Kiviuq and Siarnaq, supporting the thesis of a possible common origin of the Inuit group in the break-up of a larger body.[3][6]


  1. ^ Discovery Circumstances (JPL)
  2. ^ a b Scott Sheppard pages
  3. ^ a b c Grav, T.; and Bauer, J.; A deeper look at the colors of Saturnian irregular satellites
  4. ^ IAUC 7512: S/2000 S 1 and S/2000 S 2 25 October 2000 (discovery)
  5. ^ MPEC 2000-Y15: S/2000 S 1, S/2000 S 2, S/2000 S 7, S/2000 S 8, S/2000 S 9 19 December 2000 (discovery and ephemeris)
  6. ^ Gladman, B. J.; Nicholson, P. D.; Burns, J. A.; Kavelaars, J. J.; Marsden, B. G.; Holman, M. J.; Grav, T.; Hergenrother, C. W.; Petit, J.-M.; Jacobson, R. A.; and Gray, W. J.; Discovery of 12 satellites of Saturn exhibiting orbital clustering, Nature, 412 (July 12, 2001), pp. 163–166

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