INTERNATIONAL — The International Astronomical Union is seeking the public’s help in giving names to 20 stars and their planets found outside our solar system. These exoplanets are a small portion of the numerous known and yet to be discovered bodies orbiting in space.
The online vote is called NameExo Worlds and is aimed at giving more colorful, interesting names to the stars and planets. Some of them already have names, but others are simply classified by numbers. For example, one of the stars up for renaming is 51 Pegasi and it’s planet 51 Pegasi b.
There are some rules for the online vote. All of the options are multiple choice, so voters can’t write in their own suggestions. The possible names have been chosen with help from astronomy clubs and nonprofits around the world.
Some of the possible options for 51 Pegasi and 51 Pegasi b include “Starry Bunnies” and “Tortoise” because of one astronomy club saying they resemble the tortoise and hare. Other suggestions include “Apollonis” for Apollo and “Neil” for U.S. astronaut Neil Armstrong.
The lists of name possibilities range from endangered animals to ancient gods to characters in folk tales and more. Many of the names proposed come with explanations.
Anyone who wishes to vote can do so online at nameexoworlds.iau.org/exoworldsvote. Voters have until Oct. 31, 2015. Results will be announced in November.
Source: Huffington Post