The International Astronomical Union reference article from the English Wikipedia on 24-Apr-2004
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International Astronomical Union

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The International Astronomical Union (IAU) unites national astronomical societies from around the world. It is a member of the International Council of Science (ICSU). It is the recognised authority for the naming of stars, planets, asteroids and other celestial bodies and phenomena.

Working groups include the Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature (WGPSN), which maintains the IAU naming conventions for planetary bodies.

The IAU is also responsible for the system of Astronomical Telegrams, although it does not run it.

See also: Planetary nomenclature

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