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20 July 1999

Minor Planets to be Named After the Crew of Apollo 11

Apollo 11 Astronauts
Neil Armstrong
Buzz Aldrin
Micheal Collins

     Three minor planets will be named after the Apollo 11 astronauts, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins.  

     This was presented in the Minor Planet Circular issue No. 34623.  The Following is a recent letter from Jana Ticha, Director of the Klet Observatory, to NASA Administrator Dan Goldin:

Dear Dr. Goldin,
Considering forthcoming the 30th anniversary of the first manned lunar mission and its great importance for cosmic exploration and all humankind, we should like to inform you that three minor planets discovered at the Klet Observatory in the Czech Republic were named in honor of the crew of Apollo 11 now.

There are minor planets:

(6469) Armstrong
(6470) Aldrin
(6471) Collins

The citations announcing these namings appeared on Minor Planet Circular No. 34623 issued by the Minor Planet Center of the International Astronomical Union on 1999 May 4. Names were suggested by J. Ticha, M. Tichy and Z. Moravec, who observed these minor planets at the Klet Observatory in 1995 opposition, justprior to their numbering.

All three minor planets were discovered in the course of long-term Klet minor planet search programme by late A. Mrkos in early eighties. All three minor planets belong to main belt population.

With best regards

Yours Sincerely

Jana Ticha
Klet Observatory
Zatkovo nabrezi 4 ejovice
370 01 Ceske Budejovice
Czech Republic

     In addition to these three minor planets, several others will be named for astronauts including the seven who lost their lives on the Challenger.

Apollo 11

Images courtesy of NASA

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