Cyprus votes for a name for an exoplanet and its star

The people of Cyprus have the unique opportunity to vote for the name of their choice to be given to an exoplanet and its star, following the Cyprus Space Exploration Organisation’s (CSEO) accession to the International Astronomical Union (IAU) last year.

The campaign, which started in August, will be finalized in mid December when the IAU will announce the final names of Cyprus’ star and planet, as well as the names chosen by other countries for other solar systems.

After receiving hundreds of nominations the CSEO Naming Committee has selected the best names that relate to the history and culture of Cyprus for the final vote. People can cast their vote for the names of their choice. Voting begins on Saturday 9 of November at www.astronomy.org.cy and will last for one week.

The solar system assigned to Cyprus by the IAU is 137 light years away. Discovered in 2002, the star is a yellow dwarf with identification HD168746. Its exoplanet, HD168746b is a gas giant like Jupiter, our solar system’s biggest planet. It rotates around its star every 6,4 earth days.

The IAU serves as the internationally recognised authority for assigning designations to celestial bodies and the surface features on them. Founded in 1919, the IAU is the worlds largest professional body for astronomers.

Source: Cyprus News Agency