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Help Name Pluto's New Moons

Pluto may not be a planet anymore, but it's still got moons. In fact, thanks to images taken by the Hubble Space Telescope, it has two more moons than previously thought. Now, you get to partake in the fun of naming them:

By tradition, the moons of Pluto have names associated with Hades and the underworld. Beginning today, people can vote by visiting: http://plutorocks.seti.org

"The Greeks were great storytellers and they have given us a colorful cast of characters to work with," said Mark Showalter, Senior Research Scientist at the Carl Sagan Center of the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California. He and the teams of astronomers who made the discoveries will select two names based on the outcome of the voting.

Until now, these small moons have been referred to as, simply, "P4" and "P5". Like Pluto's three other moons, Charon, Nix and Hydra, they need to be assigned names derived from Greek or Roman mythology.

Link

Update 2/13/13: One day after William Shatner suggested that one of the moon be named "Vulcan," the discovery team added it to the list of names:

We have made our first addition to the ballot. Vulcan is the Roman god of lava and smoke, and the nephew of Pluto. (Any connection to the Star Trek TV series is purely coincidental, although we can be sure that Gene Roddenberry read the classics.) Thanks to William Shatner for the suggestion!

Mr. Shatner's second suggestion, Romulus, has a bit of a problem because it is already the name of a moon. Romulus, along with his brother Remus, are the names of the moons of the asteroid 87 Silvia. They were discovered by a team led by my good colleague Franck Marchis, now a senior scientist at the SETI Institute.


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