NASA Invites You to Nickname a Mysterious Distant World

NASA Invites You to Nickname a Mysterious Distant World

NASA Invites You to Nickname a Mysterious Distant World

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft is zooming toward the outer edge of our solar system, and on New Year's Day 2019, it'll fly past MU69. The target is a tiny world that New Horizons is scheduled to pass on New Year's Day 2019.

So that's where you come in.

It is also reported that New Horizon will investigate the subject MU69.

You can vote and submit your favorite nicknames for MU69 online through NASA.

The U.S. space agency announced that it would be accepting naming nominations for "MU69" through 3 p.m. December 1.

After the flight, NASA and the New Horizons project plan to select an official name to be sent to the worldwide astronomical Union, based in part on whether MU69 as a whole, the binary pair or perhaps a system of several objects.

Go to the website to see names now under consideration; site visitors can also vote for their favorites or nominate names they think should be added to the ballot. To ensure this doesn't become another Boaty McBoatface situation, NASA hasn't guaranteed that it will go with the most popular option. "We are pleased to draw the attention of the public to this exciting mission of discovery".

After the flyby, NASA will work to formalize the object's new designation with the International Astronomical Union, which oversees the naming of all celestial objects. The observations revealed that the object probably consists of two smaller bodies that are closely orbiting or stuck together. The campaign is open for voting by everyone, the report added. "If other bodies are found, we can name them after the type of nut they most closely resemble".

"New Horizons has always been about pure exploration, shedding light on new worlds like we've never seen before", said Principal Investigator Alan Stern of the Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) in Boulder, Colorado.

Names to chose from include Año Nuevo ("New Year" in Spanish), Pluck & Persistence, and Peanut, Almond, or Cashew, the last three of which could describe MU69's potential shape. "Until then, we're excited to bring people into the mission and share in what will be an unbelievable flyby on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, 2019!" Once the flyby takes place and they get all the required details, they are planning to submit an official title to the International Astronomical Union.

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