Pluto's New Moons Named Vulcan and Cerberus

Pluto's New Moons Named Vulcan and Cerberus

Cerberus the Three Headed Hound


A few weeks ago we posted that votes and suggestions for names for Pluto's fourth and fifth new moons were being taken. The voting over at has finished and after over 450,000 people voted the clear winner was Vulcan with Cerberus coming in second. These new names will now be put forward and hopefully selected and approved in the next few months.

What Do They Mean?

Vulcan is the Roman blacksmith god of volcanoes and fire, but the Vulcan in this case is named after the fictional home planet of Spock in Star Trek. This planet is said to be orbiting around a star 16 light years from Earth according to the hit show.

Cerberus is the three headed hellhound that guards the gates of the Underworld in Roman and Greek mythology. The hound prevents anyone from escaping the underworld once entered. This fits in nicely with Pluto's other moons which have been named after characters from the stories of Hades, the Greek underworld.

Hopefully the International Astronomical Union will agree with the suggestions and we'll have two officially named new moons of Pluto.

Image by Tom Oates.

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