SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

February 26, 2013

Vulcan entry wins Pluto moons contest


The Salem News

---- — CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — “Star Trek” fans, rejoice.

An online vote to name Pluto’s two newest, itty-bitty moons is over. And the winner is Vulcan, a name suggested by actor William Shatner, who played Capt. Kirk in the original “Star Trek” TV series.

The potential names had to come from Greek or Roman mythology and deal with the underworld. Vulcan was the Roman god of lava and smoke, and the nephew of Pluto. Vulcan was also the home planet of the pointy-eared humanoids in the “Star Trek” shows. Think Mr. Spock.

In all, more than 450,000 online votes were cast over the past two weeks.

The International Astronomical Union has the final say.