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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Name Selection for the Two Moons of Pluto

Astronomers call for help to give the names of two newly discovered Pluto's moon. Currently the two Pluto's moons called P4 and P5. The two small satellites was detected by the Hubble Space Telescope in 2011 and 2012.

Pluto known has another three moons, the Charon, Nix, and Hydra. Charon is the largest moon of Pluto, with a width of 1,043 kilometers. Nix and Hydra size range of 32 km to 113 km. These three moons are named as a character in Greek mythology who was associated with criminal groups.

The five moons of Pluto taken
by the camera of Hubble, NASA's
space telescope. (Picture from:
The researchers say, people who are interested in naming the newest pluto's moons, it can choose based on the same pattern. "The Greeks are the great storyteller. They provide a variety of characters to choose from," said Mark Showalter, a senior research scientist at the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute in Mountain View, California. People who are interested to participating in this name selection can vote via the site until February 25, 2013.

P4 and P5 moons are very small, its diameter only 20 to 30 kilometers. They were discovered by researchers who are members of NASA's New Horizons mission, which will traverse the dwarf planet in 2015. The team has monitored Pluto and surrounding areas to get the ring, small moons, and other objects that may potentially endanger the spacecraft.

The dwarf planet Pluto was discovered in 1930. Its status as one of the nine planets in the solar system began to be questioned when the International Astronomical Union defines the category of "planet" in 2006. In the same year, the status of Pluto downgraded to "dwarf planet", a new category created to describe a variety of other objects in the Kuiper belt Belt, a ring of ice objects near Neptune. (jump to related article). *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | SPACE | TJANDRA DEWI | KORAN TEMPO 4141]
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