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Public Naming of Planets and Planetary Satellites: process to be set up following first reactions

10 September 2013

The document entitled “Public Naming of Planets and Planetary Satellites”, published on 14 August 2013, outlined the first thoughts of the IAU on a future process for involving the public in the naming of exoplanets. Following the publication of this document the IAU received around 2000 individual suggestions for exoplanet names. A level of public interest which the IAU is both grateful for and excited about.

This first set of suggestions will not immediately lead to the naming of any exoplanets. However, the diverse input received from around the world — in addition to suggestions received since 14 August — will contribute to the creation of an official IAU naming process for the general public and for naming campaigns by organisations. This process, developed over the coming months, will explain the IAU’s global vision for the public naming of exoplanets, and include the development of a specific set of goals, guidelines, and new communication tools.

As a consequence of this work the IAU will temporarily suspend the reception of individual exoplanet suggestions as of 15 September.

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