Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 27 August 2014

Dig deep to name Pluto's moons

Astronomers have announced a contest to name two of Pluto's moons, discovered over the past two years (AP)

Want to name Pluto's two tiniest moons? Then you'll need to dig deep into mythology.

Astronomers have announced a contest to name the moons discovered over the past two years.

Three Pluto moons already have names associated with Hades and the underworld. They are Charon, the ferryman of Hades; Nix for the night goddess; and the multi-headed monster Hydra.

The two unnamed moons need similar underworldly references. Right now, they go by the bland titles of P4 and P5. They are no more than 20 miles (32 kms) across.

Online voting will last two weeks. Twelve choices are available at the website plutorocks. Choices include the hero who slew Hydra, Hercules; and Styx, the river to the underworld. Write-in suggestions are welcomed.

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