The building blocks for astronomically literate citizens

What does it mean for a citizen to be literate in astronomy? Astronomers who participate in outreach to the general public experience various degrees of astronomical knowledge among people. But so far, there had not been ...

Lunar craters named in honor of Apollo 8

The newly named craters are visible in the foreground of the iconic Earthrise colour photograph taken by astronaut William Anders. It depicts the moment that our shiny blue Earth came back into view as the spacecraft emerged ...

This summer's solar eclipses from the ends of the Earth

Solar eclipses will occur at opposite ends of the Earth this summer, 2018. Both will be merely partial solar eclipses as seen from the Earth's surface, not as dramatic as last summer's total solar eclipse whose path of totality ...

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International Astronomical Union

The International Astronomical Union (IAU) is a collection of professional astronomers, at the Ph.D. level and beyond, active in professional research and education in astronomy. Headquartered in Paris, France, it acts as the internationally recognized authority for assigning designations to celestial bodies (stars, planets, asteroids, etc.) and any surface features on them, and is a member of the International Council for Science (ICSU). The main aim of the IAU is to promote and safeguard the science of astronomy in all its aspects through international cooperation. The IAU maintains friendly relations with organizations that include amateur astronomers in their membership.

Working groups include the Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature (WGPSN), which maintains the astronomical naming conventions and planetary nomenclature for planetary bodies. The IAU is also responsible for the system of astronomical telegrams which are produced and distributed on its behalf by the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams. The Minor Planet Center (MPC), a clearinghouse for all non-planetary or non-moon bodies in the solar system, also operates under the IAU.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA