NASA picks Mont. students' names for moon probes: Ebb, Flow

moon probes
Fourth-graders in Montana have won the NASA grail by naming the previously nameless twin spacecraft orbiting the moon "Ebb" and "Flow."

NASA's rocket scientists were too busy creating the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (yes, GRAIL) probes to give them proper names and had simply called them "A" and "B." So, back in October, a month after the unmanned craft were launched, the space agency launched the naming contest.

More than 11,000 students in nearly 900 classrooms in 45 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico participated. The winning entry came from the 28 students in Nina DiMauro's class at the Emily Dickinson Elementary School in Bozeman, Mont., NASA said.

"They noted the fact that GRAIL is going to be studying gravity on the moon, and that the effect of gravity on the Earth is seen every day in terms of tides," principal investigator Maria Zuber of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology told AFP. "So they chose Ebb and Flow because it was the daily example of how the moon's gravity is working on the Earth."

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