Flagstaff Festival of Science 2005 - Asteroid Contest

Flagstaff Festival of Science 2005

Swing into Science!

Asteroid Naming Contest


The 2005 Flagstaff Festival of Science features a contest to come up with a name for an asteroid. The asteroid to be named this year was discovered by Lowell Observatory astronomer Dr. Edward Bowell, Director of the LONEOS Project. The asteroid's number, assigned in order of discovery, is 10724, and its designation is 1986 VR5, indicating that it was discovered toward the end of 1986. After nearly 20 years, it's high time it was given a proper name!


Multiple exposure image of the 2002 Festival Asteroid (12912) 1998 SR60 taken at the US Naval Observatory Flagstaff Station in May 2002. The asteroid images are the four faint images in a slanted line near the center: the four images were taken seven minutes apart, and reveal the asteroid's motion against the background of distant stars. Click on the image to see an animated version of the same images (285 KB).

Since 1996, the Flagstaff Festival of Science has featured an asteroid naming contest. From September 23 until October 3, 2005, Arizona residents are invited to participate in this year's contest and submit suggestions for naming an asteroid.

In addition to the privilege of naming an asteroid, the winner of the contest receives:

  • a framed photo and plaque showing the asteroid and the winning entry;

  • a $50 savings bond from Northern Arizona Healthcare;

  • an observing session with an astronomer using the LONEOS telescope (Lowell Observatory Near Earth Object Survey) on Anderson Mesa just south of Flagstaff.

Asteroid Tutorial Previous Winners Asteroid Names (197KB)


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Last updated: 31 August 2005