<figure> <img src="https://cdni.rt.com/files/2018.10/article/5bc21370fc7e93254f8b45dd.jpg"> <figcaption>Saturn's neighbour moons Tethys and Hyperion, as seen by the Cassini orbiter. © NASA / Space Science Institute / <span class="copyright">Free</span></figcaption> </figure> <strong>Astronomers think it’s possible that moons can have their own mini-moon – but the scientific suggestion that they should be called ‘moonmoons’ is not going down well among those with a more poetic inclination.</strong> <strong>READ MORE: NASA administrator shows off historic spaceship...made of Lego</strong>
The term ‘moonmoons’ started with astrophysicist Duncan Forgan, reports ScienceAlert, who has written a paper awaiting publishing on the topic.
More recently, astronomers Juna Kollmeier and Sean Raymond wrote their own paper describing how moonmoons could actually be possible. However, they opted for a slightly less ridiculous, but equally disappointing, name of ‘submoon’.
Twitter users in particular are very displeased at the missed opportunity to name something that is not technically even a thing right now, but very well might be confirmed as a thing in the future.
While ‘moonmoons’ may not actually be the agreed upon term for this speculative phenomenon (we’re guessing that honor goes to the person who actually finds a real-life example), that didn’t stop the Australian House of Representatives throwing shade over the suggestion.
READ MORE: First ever ‘exomoon’ discovered orbiting planet outside our solar system – study
To really throw a spanner in the works, another planetary astronomer, Michele Bannister of Queens University Belfast, told New Scientist that she would tend to opt for a ‘moonmoonlet’, to be precise.
“I think we can say for sure that there’s not a moonmoon that’s kilometers across around Jupiter or Saturn. A moonmoon down to the size of a skyscraper could exist out there, but I’d call it moonmoonlet,” she explained.
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