What Is a Legitimate Star Registry?

Star registries cannot give stars names recognized by astronomers.
••• Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Brian

Several companies claim to sell people the right to name a star in the sky, complete with a certificate and coordinates. However, these hold no weight among astronomers.


According to Space.com, professional astronomers only recognize names and star numbers issued by the International Astronomical Union. Since the IAU does not sell star names or license anyone to do so, star registries hold no right to name a star.

Official Star Naming

In general, the IAU gives stars numerical identifiers, except for extremely important stars traditionally known by a name, such as Sirius, the brightest star.

Exoplanets and Other Heavenly Objects

In addition to stars, the IAU also handles the naming of recently-discovered planets outside the solar system, as well as galaxies and other astronomical objects. Commercial registries for exoplanets therefore hold no official weight with astronomers.


Just because star registries do not have the power to officially name a star does not mean that "naming" a star has no worth. Some people enjoy the novelty of naming a star and registries may pique interest in astronomy.

Related Articles

How to Find Star Coordinates
How to Make a Constellation Project
How to Locate Orion's Belt
What Astronomical Instrument Measures the Brightness...
How to Make a Wire Hanger Model of the Solar System
How to Convert Arcseconds to Parsecs
How to Construct a Rhombus With a Compass & Straight...
How to Find Mars in the Night Sky
How Do I Locate Sirius in the Night Sky?
How to Convert Signed Magnitude to Decimal
How to Memorize the Dewey Decimal System
How to Draw a 7-Point Star
How to Make a Simple Theodolite
How to Use a Protractor to Measure a Triangle
How to Find Pleiades
How to Find the Height of a Rectangular Pyramid
How to Name a Line in Geometry
A Guide to Constellations for Kids
Orbital Radius vs. Planetary Radius
How to Memorize the Periodic Table

Dont Go!

We Have More Great Sciencing Articles!