back to article NASA asks world+dog to name Mercury's craters (back off, 4chan)

There's a chance to enter the history books (or at least a planetary geography atlas) as NASA is asking the public to help name five prominent features on Mercury, the tiny planet closest to the Sun. In 2004 NASA launched Messenger – its MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging probe – the first craft …

  1. Captain DaFt

    Vote now!

    Crater C: Tater Crater, for Foster "Tater, The Music Maker" Wiley - March 25, 1947 - September 10, 2010

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    To honor of the illustrator Frank Hampson (21 December 1918 – 8 July 1985) I suggest Dare crater after his inspirational hero - Daniel McGregor Dare, the intrepid chief pilot of the Interplanet Space Fleet.

    1. Bleu

      Amusing but

      they are not calling for names of fictional characters.

      1. Bleu

        Downvote for a simple statement of fact.

        That is pathetic, the reg. seems to be suffering from a surfeit of dummy-spitters.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    1) Volta crater

    2) Attacks crater

    3) Women crater

    4) Bar crater

    5) Route crater

    6) Mallow crater

    ....this is getting hard...

    7) M&M crater

    ...ok, I quit.

  4. Khaptain Silver badge

    The Eadon Crater

    Would be nice to have an El Reg "icon" way out there.

    1. dogged

      Re: The Eadon Crater

      well away from here being the best part.

  5. lawndart


    Bronowski, after Jacob Bronowski, scientist and mathematician, author of The Ascent of Man.

    That is assuming he hasn't already had one named after him (a very cursory search did not produce any results)

  6. Christoph

    Name them for politicians

    They should be named for prominent politicians.

    Because Mercury is the god of thieves and liars.

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Name them for politicians

      Problem: Too many politicians. Not enough craters.

      1. evs

        Re: Name them for politicians

        > Problem: Too many politicians. Not enough craters.

        Solution: Fire politicians at Mercury until equilibrium achieved.

        1. Mark 85 Silver badge

          Re: Name them for politicians

          Amend my previous then... too many politicians, not enough rockets.

  7. asdf


    Kama Sutra position names?

  8. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    Krugman crater?

    Craters QE1 to QE3 and "last position of the federal reserve" come to mind.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Krugman crater?

      We are still on QE2 here, still going strong after 60 years

  9. MrDamage

    Why back off 4chan?

    It's safe to assume that Mercury is just as pockmarked as the average 4chan users face.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why back off 4chan?

      to prevent all 5 craters from being named "Hitler did nothing wrong."?

  10. Chairo

    They do it wrong

    If they would make an auction out of it, they could finance the whole mission just by naming one single crater after the revered founder of a certain entertainment giant. He certainly fulfills the requirements, too.

    If they would bent a bit and accept fictional beings, they might finance the next couple of missions by naming a few craters after a certain mouse and its friends, too.

    The one with the big round ears, please ------------>

  11. frank ly

    A large crater should be named 'Hermes'.

    1. MJI Silver badge


      The carrier or the delivery company?

      Anyway should it now be Viraat?

      1. Bleu

        Re: After?

        No, after the scarf beloved of the upper-middle-class bureaucrat and journalism sisterhood.

  12. Bob Dunlop

    So why are the names restricted to Arts and Humanaties ?

    Can't we have some engineers or scientists in there.

    1. Vincent Ballard

      Planetary nomenclature is themed. Scientists get craters on the Moon.

      1. Bleu

        Speaking of Ballard

        perhaps JG should be in the running.

    2. Bleu

      You should also check the list.

      My initial reaction was the same, but they seem to have made pretty good choices.

  13. Yesnomaybe


    I think the International Astronomical Union (IAU) is being a bit strict with the naming here. I mean, the probe ITSELF is named after Melinda-of-the-superb-funbags, isn't it?

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Whoa there

      If you want to start naming craters after famously-endowed celebs & starlets, we definitely don't have enough craters !

      Time to launch the politicians. Maybe if we amend the rockets in a MIRV configuration we could achieve a reasonable equilibrium ?

  14. dogged
    1. hplasm


      I or I.M

      or both?

      1. dogged

        Re: Banks?

        Same guy so just "Banks" covers all the bases.

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Banks?

          Use both!

          2 craters done!

  15. Bleu

    I checked the list.

    Will probably make a submission.

    Quite a few that I thought worthwhile already have features named for them.

    I was disappointed to see that Holst already has one, I think that for The Planets, he deserves to have more than a minor feature on Mercury.

    I will be suggesting Dick, Lem, Lessing, Strugatsky, still thinking about the fifth, I would suggest Abe, but he has the same surname as our horrid PM.

    Would like to suggest whoever in Deep Purple wrote Space Trucking, before my time, but I love the song. Doesn't meet the criterion on period of death.

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