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Did you know that you can name a planet?

Did you know that you can name a planet?

Image for the article titled Did You Know You Can Name a Planet?

picture: IAU OAO / NARIT

Since NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Canadian Space Agency launched the James Webb Space Telescope in December 2021, we’ve been treated to some of the most unusual images from space (or anywhere, really) ever taken.

amazing And the strong space telescope He was also busy observing new exoplanet systems — and now International Union of Astronomers (IAU) He would like to get public help to name 20 of them. That’s right: It’s your chance to name a planet. Here’s what you need to know.

How to name a planet

First, some clarifications. An exoplanet is a planet outside our solar system. The “exoplanet system” is An exoplanet and its host star.

And since 1919, the International Astronomical Union has been responsible for cataloging celestial bodies and creating consistent conventions for naming them (among other things) – which is why they hold Name ExoWorlds 2022 A competition to name 20 extrasolar planetary systems.

How to enter the NameExoWorlds 2022 contest

This is a team project, so before you start thinking about names, you’ll need to build a team, or join one that already exists. And not just any team: A team “made up of students, educators, astronomy enthusiasts, amateur astronomers and exoplanetologists,” according to UAI. ButThere is no limit to the number of people who can join Team.

Once you’ve gathered (or joined) your dream team, it’s time to get down to business. There are details instructions And the Grammar You can read on for all the details, but here’s a basic overview of what your team will need to do:

  • Choose a system from 20 ExoWorlds in the list
  • Organizing an astronomy awareness event related to exoplanets
  • Suggest a name for an exoplanet and its host star in your language, and give an explanation of the cultural context
  • Register your team and submit your naming proposal (written + video format) Via this form

good print

Teams can send An entry, any pair of names: one for an exoplanet and one for the host star. All proposals must be submitted by November 11, 2022. After that, they will be reviewed and judged, and the winners will be announced on March 20, 2023.

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