Home > Mercury, NASA > Here’s your chance to name some craters on Mercury

Here’s your chance to name some craters on Mercury

December 19, 2014

Here’s a message from Heather Weir at NASA’s Goddard Space Center:

“TO HONOR THE ASTOUNDING ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE MESSENGER MISSION, THERE WILL BE AN INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION TO  NAME A CRATER ON MERCURY!

“OPENS DECEMBER 15, 2014 (00:00 UTC)     CLOSES JANUARY 15, 2015 (11:59 UTC)

“The MESSENGER Team is seeking help from all Earthlings to suggest names for five impact craters on Mercury.  This is a chance to immortalize an important person in the Arts and Humanities from any nation or cultural group by having a crater on the planet Mercury named in their honor!    We will accept submissions beginning midnight (00:00 UTC) December 15, 2014 until January 15, 2015 (23:59 UTC).  All entries will be reviewed by Team representatives and expert panels.  Then, 15 finalist names will be submitted to the International Astronomical Union (IAU) for selection of the 5 winners.  Winning submissions will be announced by the IAU to coincide with MESSENGER’s End of Mission Operations in late March/April 2015.  Full details are available on the MESSENGER web site http://namecraters.carnegiescience.edu/.”

As the MESSENGER mission to orbit and study the solar system’s innermost planet Mercury is coming to an end when the spacecraft runs out of fuel in a few more months, the MESSENGER team has selected five small but important craters that need names.

The link above will provide all the information needed to enter including rules, pictures, descriptions of the craters to be named and a list of craters already named.

The official naming rules for craters are these: “Deceased artists, musicians, painters, and authors who have made outstanding or fundamental contributions to their field and have been recognized as art historically significant figures for more than 50 years.”

Tip of the old astronomer’s observing cap to the NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassadors.Program.

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