Newly discovered Jupiter moons get names

This 20 August 2019 video says about itself:

Exploring The Icy Moons of Jupiter. NASA’s Europa Clipper and ESA’s JUICE

Mars is the place that most of our spacecraft, landers and rovers are studying, searching for any evidence that life ever existed somewhere else in the Solar System.

But talk to planetary scientists, and they’re just as excited about the ocean worlds of the Solar System; the moons, asteroids, dwarf planets and Kuiper Belt objects where there could be vast oceans of liquid water under thick shells of ice.

The perfect environment for life to thrive.

We’ve only had tantalizing hints that these oceans are there, but NASA is building a spacecraft that will study one of these worlds in detail: the Europa Clipper. And they’re not the only ones. The European Space Agency is building their own mission, the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer.

By Lisa Grossman today:

5 of Jupiter’s newly discovered moons received names in a public contest

The monikers come from Greek and Roman mythology, keeping with tradition

Meet the new moons of Jupiter. After a public contest, five newly discovered Jovian satellites now have official astronomical names, the International Astronomical Union announced August 26.

Planetary scientist Scott Sheppard of the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, D.C., reported the discovery of the moons in July 2018 (SN: 7/17/18), along with seven others. He and his colleagues spotted the moons while searching for a theoretical Planet Nine orbiting beyond Neptune (SN: 7/5/16).

The team solicited name suggestions for the moons on Twitter. There were some rules, most notably that Jupiter’s 79 known moons must all be named for descendants or consorts of the god Jupiter from Roman mythology, or Zeus in Greek myths. But that didn’t stop people from suggesting the names of beloved pets or, perhaps inevitably, Moony McMoonface.

Here are the winners:

Pandia: A daughter of Zeus and the moon goddess Selene, Pandia is the goddess of the full moon. One of the groups to enter this name in the contest was the astronomy club of the Lanivet Community Primary School in Bodmin, England, whose mascot is a panda.

Ersa: Sister of Pandia, Ersa is the goddess of dew. Several people suggested this name, including 4-year-old moon expert Walter, who got the judges’ attention with a song listing the largest moons of the solar system in size order.

Eirene: The goddess of peace, Eirene is the daughter of Zeus and Themis, a Greek Titaness who personifies divine order, justice and law.

Philophrosyne: A granddaughter of Zeus, Philophrosyne is the spirit of welcome and kindness.

Eupheme: Sister of Philophrosyne, Eupheme is the spirit of praise and good omen.

1 thought on “Newly discovered Jupiter moons get names

  1. Pingback: Planet Saturn, 20 new moons discovered | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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