Constellation Named after Godzilla

Science Society Technology

Tokyo, Oct. 19 (Jiji Press)--An international research group using the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, including NASA, has named a constellation of gamma ray-emitting stars Godzilla, according to Japanese movie distributor Toho Co. <9602>.

The constellation is among the 22 newly created constellations of such stars. They are different from the 88 official ones designated by the International Astronomical Union.

According to an announcement by Toho on Thursday, the constellation was named after the company's popular character because gamma-ray bursts, which happen around a black hole and some other places, resemble Godzilla's "heat ray," or a fiery jet, its trademark weapon.

The 22 constellations were created to commemorate the facility's feat of discovering more than 3,000 gamma-ray sources, matching the number of stars visible with the naked eyes using the space telescope.

Among the names chosen for the new constellations are the Hulk, the Little Prince, the Enterprise from "Star Trek" and Mount Fuji.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

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