Twitter users asked to name the Uranus probe – and it went pretty much as you’d expect – National

In what might become the title Low Hanging Fruit of the Year, someone recently asked Twitter users to come up with a new name for a probe that went to Uranus, and, well, what happened next won’t shock anyone. – but it’s hilarious.

Before we get into the enthusiastic and viral reactions, let’s go back a bit.

ExploreIGO is a Twitter fan account dedicated to whipping up our solar system’s icy giant planets, namely Neptune and Uranus. The account often posts photos and memes about the two planets, and their pinned tweet is a plea for the space community to send missions to the icy masses in the name of exploration.

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It should be noted that there are no planned probes headed for Uranus as of now, but scientists with NASA voted last year to make the blue planet NASA’s top priority in the next decade by developing a mission to Uranus, with spacecraft capable of an orbiter. contain and a probe.

Which brings us to the tweet in question.

Last Saturday, ExploreIGO asked its community “what would YOU call the #Uranus Orbiter & Probe Mission?”

We all know what comes next…

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“What about the planetary orbital observation probe? AKA The POOP,” suggested one respondent. “Start of the Uranus mission…Amazing spectacle in space,” another offered.

In all, the original post has received thousands of suggestions – some silly, but some are actually very thoughtful and based on science or mythology. You know, maybe those NASA names… actually consider.

Many recommended naming the Uranus probe Olympus, Odin, or even MUSE for Mission Uranus Science Expedition. Some suggested the names of historical figures in the space community, such as Lassel, Kuiper, and Earhart.

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While it may seem immature for the scientific community to joke about the planets they explore, some scientists say it’s actually helpful to get their work out to a wider audience.

“I think it’s good to be involved in my work in some way,” Ned Molter, a doctoral student in astronomy at the University of California, told Futurism last year.

“Do the jokes really get tired and repetitive? Absolutely,” Molter added. “I wouldn’t say I’m getting frustrated at all. It starts a conversation.”

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Heidi Hammel, a leading astronomer from the Space Science Institute and Planetary Society and a top expert on Neptune and Uranus, told the outlet that NASA is quite sensitive to the word “probe” and how it relates to Uranus.

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“I’m really concerned that it’s going to be difficult to get a mission to study this planet because I think NASA would be sensitive to these headlines and sensitive to all the ridicule they would get if they got a mission. wanted to get to this planet. planet,” she said.

“We do want to send atmospheric probes, and we call them probes, and it’s impossible to separate that from the whole thing of aliens investigating humans… Maybe we’ll just go to Neptune so we don’t have to worry about the whole thing.”

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