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Scientists need your help to name the newly discovered moons of Jupiter



Now is your chance to name a moon, but do not hope – Moony McMoonFace is not on the go. Researchers at the Carnegie Institute of Science have applied some very strict rules for their competition to help the public to name the newly discovered moons of Jupiter.

Carnegie scientists for the first time announced the accidental discovery of 12 satellites circling Jupiter in July 2018. A team of astronomers searched for possible Planet X or Planet 9 beyond Pluto's orbit when the moons were found. Scott Shepard of Carnegie said 1

1 of the outer moons were "normal," but one was "strange." The discovery led to the total number of moons of Jupiter up to 79 – most of every planet in our Solar System. The largest and most famous moons are called Io, Europe, Ganymede and Callisto.

Now researchers are asking for help naming five of the 12 moons, but there are some rigorous guidelines to be endorsed by the International Astronomical Union. Names must be 16 characters or less, can not be offensive and can not be very similar to the names of existing moons or asteroids. Moons can not be called the name of a living person or anything related to political, military or religious assets.


How to name the new moons of Jupiter
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There are even more rules. Moons should be baptized into symbols in Roman or Greek mythology, which were either the descendants of either Jupiter (Roman) or Zeus (Greek). They both had many lovers and descendants, so there are many names to choose from. Three of the moons are retrograde, which means they run in the opposite direction of the gas giant's rotation. These moons must have names ending with the letter "e". The two moons in progressive orbit must have names ending with the letter "a". One of the moons is "weird" because it travels between the retrograde moons – but in a progressive direction.

If you have an idea you can offer it on @JupiterLunacy why the name was chosen with a tweet or a short video along with the #NameJupitersMoons hashtag. The competition ends on April 15, 2019.


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