Planet Earth
International Astronomical Union WGSN

Best practise (Star Names)

In 2022, the IAU OAO team that organized the new NameExoWorlds campaign decided to ban naming stars after people. Due to several more requests in the same year and the foreseeable political explosiveness of such naming, we decided to change already existing names after humans. With the change we always attached importance to the preservation of the intended dedication of the star name.

People can be honored in the night sky by naming lunar craters or asteroids after them. Stars, however, should never bear official proper names of people.

In the future, IAU WGSN naming will proceed according to the following strategy:

  1. We create a database of names of historical and indigenous constellations, their celestial areas, and their etymologies.
  2. Stars that are naked-eye visible will be given names of obsolete historical constellations verschiedener Kulturen.
  3. Only stars fainter than 6th magnitude are given the suggestions from Naming Campaigns.

For the naming of naked-eye stars, we develop a scoring system and vote within the group.