Asteroid targeted by NASA’s Lucy spacecraft gets a fantastic name

The first asteroid visited by NASA’s rock-hopping spacecraft Lucy finally has a name. The small asteroid in the main asteroid belt that lies between Mars and Jupiter has been named “Dinkinesh” or தியான்நை in Amharic, the language of Ethiopia, which means “you are wonderful.”

Dinkinesh was discovered in 1999, but like millions of others main belt asteroids, it was not given a name, it was only given a designation number when the path was well determined. First known by its provisional designation as 1999 VD57, the asteroid later entered the catalogs as 152830. A proper name was first proposed when the rock was chosen as the target of NASA’s Lucy mission.

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