“Due to increasing interest and the number of submissions we’re getting, it was clear we needed to extend this public outreach activity,” Jim Green, the head of NASA’s planetary-science division, said in a statement.
The campaign was set to end April 7 but will now run through April 24.
“This campaign not only reveals the public’s excitement about the mission, but helps the team, which will not have time to come up with names during the flyby, to have a ready-made library of names in advance to officially submit to the IAU,” Green said.
Once the campaign ends, the New Horizons team will sort through the submissions and send their recommendations to the IAU, which will decide if and how certain names can be used.
Anyone can suggest a name and vote for other suggestions on the “Our Pluto” website.