And then there were nine.
NASA has chosen nine finalists in the student naming contest for its next Mars rover, which currently goes by the bland Mars 2020 (a reference to its launch window, which extends from July through August of this year).
The space agency picked three submissions in each of the three age categories — grades K-4, 5-8 and 9-12.
The monikers, and the students who proposed them, are:
- Endurance, K-4, Oliver Jacobs of Virgina.
- Tenacity, K-4, Eamon Reilly of Pennsylvania.
- Promise, K-4, Amira Shanshiry of Massachusetts.
- Perseverance, 5-8, Alexander Mather of Virginia.
- Vision, 5-8, Hadley Green of Mississippi.
- Clarity, 5-8, Nora Benitez of California.
- Ingenuity, 9-12, Vaneeza Rupani of Alabama.
- Fortitude, 9-12, Anthony Yoon of Oklahoma.
- Courage, 9-12, Tori Gray of Louisiana.
Public input is one criterion NASA will use to pick the final name, and the agency is therefore encouraging folks to vote for their favorite online at go.nasa.gov/name2020. But you’ll have to act relatively fast; voting closes at midnight EST (0500 GMT) on Jan. 28.
Read more: space