Minor planet named Bernard

February 17, 2017, University of Western Australia
Minor planet named Bernard

A minor planet in the solar system will officially be known as Bernardbowen from today after Australian citizen science project theSkyNet won a competition to name the celestial body.

The minor planet was named by the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) in honour of their founding chairman Dr Bernard Bowen.

Bernardbowen sits in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter and takes 3.26 Earth years to orbit the Sun.

The minor planet was discovered on October 28, 1991, and until now has been known as (6196) 1991 UO4.

Based at ICRAR, theSkyNet has been running since 2011 and sees donating their spare computing power to help Australian astronomers uncover the mysteries of the Universe.

Its 50,000-odd volunteers entered an International Astronomical Union (IAU) contest to name planets beyond our .

Project founders ICRAR also won the right to name a minor planet within our solar system. Bernardbowen was one of 17 minor planets to be christened today.

Other newly named minor planets include Kagura, after a traditional Shinto theatrical dance, and Mehdia, which is equivalent to the Arabic word for gift.

Dr Bowen is renowned as one of the country's finest science administrators and has presided over scientific advances ranging from the oceans to the skies.

He was instrumental in the establishment of ICRAR in 2009, and helped bring part of the Square Kilometre Array telescope to Western Australia.

A full list of the citation of the can be found at the IAU Minor Planet Circular. Bernardbowen on the Minor Planet Centre site, including an interactive showing its position in the solar system.

Explore further: Dwarf star 200 light-years away contains life's building blocks

Related Stories

Citizen scientists name planet

December 15, 2015

Volunteers from the Perth based citizen astronomy project theSkyNet have won the right to name a planet around a distant star as part of a global contest run by the International Astronomical Union (IAU).

TheSkyNet set to conquer more of our universe

May 3, 2012

In its ever-expanding quest to process astronomy data and discover much more of our Universe, theSkyNet has joined forces with the Pan-STARRS1 Science Consortium (PS1SC) to probe other galaxies beyond our own Milky Way.

Community computing project TheSkyNet launched

September 14, 2011

A community computing science initiative to help discover the hidden Universe was officially launched yesterday at Curtin University by Western Australia's Minister for Science and Innovation, the Hon. John Day.

Recommended for you

HESS J1943+213 is an extreme blazar, study finds

June 21, 2018

An international group of astronomers have carried out multi-wavelength observations of HESS J1943+213 and found evidence supporting the hypothesis that this gamma-ray source is an extreme blazar. The finding is reported ...

'Red nuggets' are galactic gold for astronomers

June 21, 2018

About a decade ago, astronomers discovered a population of small, but massive galaxies called "red nuggets." A new study using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory indicates that black holes have squelched star formation in these ...

The Rosetta stone of active galactic nuclei deciphered

June 21, 2018

A galaxy with at least one active supermassive black hole – named OJ 287 – has caused many irritations and questions in the past. The emitted radiation of this object spans a wide range – from the radio up to the highest ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.