Naming Pluto: New Horizons

In 2006, the New Horizons spacecraft was launched. Its mission is to give astronomers a closer look at the Pluto system, and in the summer of 2015 the first images of Pluto were received from the New Horizons mission (NASA). The images show an incredibly pluto-vr-nytimesbeautiful world full of landmarks such as valleys, mountains, and icy plains. Right now, the IAU (International Astronomical Union) is has approved themes in order to begin the process of naming the various features on the surface of Pluto and its moons, something that would not be possible without the New Horizons’ flyby of the Pluto system (NASA). The process of naming features on Pluto, Styx, Charon, Kerberos, Hydra, and Nix is comprised of three parts. The first part, in which the general public is allowed to submit names and vote on favorite ones, began in 2015 (NASA).The next step is for the scientific community and members of the New Horizons team to submit possible names, while the final stage in naming will come from the IAU next year when they will officially select the final titles for various landmarks in the Pluto system (Science Daily). The New Horizons spacecraft is currently en route to flyby Kuiper Belt object 2014 MU69 (ARS Technica).


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