PIA21755: New Names on Ceres

New Names on Ceres


Often, the names of features on planetary bodies are connected through a specific theme -- for example, many features on the Moon have been named after famous scientists. NASA's Dawn mission, together with the International Astronomical Union, established that craters on Ceres would be named for agricultural deities from all over the world, and other features would be named for agricultural festivals. Ceres itself was named after the Roman goddess of corn and harvests by its discoverer, Giuseppe Piazzi, who spotted it with his telescope in 1801 . Since March 2015, Dawn has been orbiting Ceres and sending back many intriguing images and other data about its features.

Using suggestions from the Dawn team, the IAU recently approved 25 new Ceres feature names tied to theme of agricultural deities, marked in yellow on the map. Emesh Crater, for example, is named for the Sumerian god of vegetation and agriculture. Jumi is the Latvian god of fertility of the field.

The newly named surface features vary in size. Thrud, for example, is a crater with a diameter of 4.8 miles (7.8 kilometers) within the larger crater Zadeni, while Mlezi has a diameter of 28 miles (42 kilometers).

For more information, the characteristics of these and other features on Ceres can be found in the IAU's Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature .

Background Info:

Dawn's mission is managed by JPL for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. Dawn is a project of the directorate's Discovery Program, managed by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. UCLA is responsible for overall Dawn mission science. Orbital ATK Inc., in Dulles, Virginia, designed and built the spacecraft. The German Aerospace Center, Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Italian Space Agency and Italian National Astrophysical Institute are international partners on the mission team.

For a complete list of Dawn mission participants, visit http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov/mission .

For more information about the Dawn mission, visit http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov .

Cataloging Keywords:

Name Value Additional Values
Target 1 Ceres
System Main Belt
Target Type Dwarf Planet Asteroid
Mission Dawn
Instrument Host Dawn
Host Type Orbiter
Instrument Framing Camera (FC)
Extra Keywords Color, Crater, Map, Moon
Acquisition Date
Release Date 2017-09-01
Date in Caption
Image Credit NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA
Source photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA21755
Identifier PIA21755