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Makemake (dwarf planet)



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Artist's conception of Makemake, by Ann Feild (Space Telescope Science Institute)

Makemake (officially known as 136472 Makemake) is a dwarf planet. It was discovered on March 31, 2005 by astronomers Michael E. Brown, Chad Trujillo and David Rabinowitz. It was announced as a dwarf planet on June 11, 2008. Makemake is a Trans-Neptunian object, because it orbits the Sun after Neptune.

It is called Makemake after the god of the ancient civilization that lived on Easter island.

Name

Originally the object was given a codename 'Easterbunny' as it was discovered shortly after Easter. The International Astronomical Union gave it the name Makemake, the creator god of the Easter Island people, to keep its connection with Easter.[1]

Structure

Makemake appears to be made mainly of ice and rock. However, at its very low temperature, ice is as hard as many types of rock.

References

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