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Old 25th October 2010, 01:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Star/Planet/Moon Names

This might not be the right area for this thread because it it has a foot firmly in the fictional world, but....

What names have/will be given to stars and planets and other orbiting bodies. I know that, mostly, atronomy names things in the most uninspiring of ways, but as that is mainly for categorising stuff. Would it be safe to presume that if/when man does reach other star systems he will give the star/planets/moons more or less romantic names.

What sort of names are there from fiction, I can obviously think of a few, but I'm wondering if anyone has used more common names, less romantic names for planets or stars.

Can you guys/gals provide some examples from fiction?

I suppose a way of doing it (with stars) would be to name them after the constellation they are part of as seen from earth, but that would miss many out, surely. If corporations reach planets first will they name them after products? Even if they did, and we had the SKY1 planet would it not pick up a more colloquial name from the inhabitants (if inhabited) or the workers (if stripped of resources)
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Old 25th October 2010, 02:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Star/Planet/Moon Names

There's a well-established naming convention used by the IAU for all celestial objects.
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Old 26th October 2010, 10:42 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Star/Planet/Moon Names

I understand that, but my issue is that the names are far from ideal (in literary terms) they are simply used to categorise the objects without bestowing any kind of name upon them. Names like NG507 or NGC5736 or IC2944 are not ideal when it comes to literature. Surely if Humans ever reach this star systems they will give the star a better name, and especially if people end up living on a planet or moon in one of these systems, it's unlikely that they will refer to thier new planet as IC2944/3 as that isn't very romantic or traditional.

Many stars have unofficial names, but will they ever stick, for instance some parts of Ursa Major were named by Apollo astronaughts as regor navi and dnoces, these names stuck when used by astronaughts even though they already had names (from ancient times) that were more romantic*.

*I keep using the word romantic but I think audiotorially asthetic might be closer in meaning.
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Old 26th October 2010, 11:06 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Star/Planet/Moon Names

I'm not sure what your question is. Settlers generally take either the local name, or aplpy one of their own - and that's likely to happen should humanity ever start colonising other worlds.
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Old 26th October 2010, 11:12 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Star/Planet/Moon Names

If it ever becomes relevant to the person in the street, colloquial names will probably appear, whatever the IAU says about them. And just as happens with countries, the names may vary depending on the culture of those using the names.

We in the UK rarely use the "local" popular name for places such as Deutschland, Italia, Espaņa, Polska, let alone their formal ones: Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Repubblica italiana, Reino de Espaņa and Rzeczpospolita Polska respectively. We even use different names for our own country (and that's without those abroad confusing the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland with England. )

Okay, even in England, "newer" countries often get to have their local name known, but only if we find it easy to say and spell (like Hrvatska, for instance. ).
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Old 26th October 2010, 01:51 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Star/Planet/Moon Names

Thank you Ursa, that was a very good point. And Ian, now I think about it maybe there wasn't a question.

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Can you guys/gals provide some examples from fiction?
But thank you guys, very useful.
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