Space & Astronomy
Astronomers seek help to name exoplanets
By T.K. Randall
August 18, 2015 · 27 comments
The public has been given the chance to vote on how to name the planets. Image Credit: NASA/JPL
Members of the public have been asked to help determine what to call 32 distant extrasolar worlds.
The International Astronomical Union's "NameExoWorlds" competition aims to give members of the public the opportunity to have their say on what to call some of the new planets that have been discovered in orbit around distant stars over the last few years.
The worlds chosen for the competition were picked from a pool of 260 solar systems and voted on by astronomy clubs and nonprofit organizations back at the beginning of the year.
The candidate planets include some well known examples such as 51 Pegasi b which in 1995 became the first extrasolar planet ever discovered around a sun-like star.
The vote will be open until October 31st with the winning names being announced in November.
"This list includes well-studied exoplanets discovered over twenty years, up to 31 December 2008," the website states. "A period of at least five years since the discovery has been considered as a simple and satisfactory criterion to include exoplanets which can be considered as confirmed."
"All the discoveries were made using various methods, including radial velocities, transits, microlensing and direct imagery."
The voting page, which does not require registration, can be accessed - here
Source: Yahoo! News
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Extrasolar Planet, Exoplanet
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