Memorable names for astronomical objects

Choose the object


Modern astronomy often involves massive observing campaigns which churn out immense catalogues of objects. Some small fraction of these will be extraordinarily interesting, but because of the nature of their discovery, they will have an excruciatingly boring name like "KIC 8462852", "SN2010jl" or "SDSS J1148+5251".

This page offers a new naming scheme, applicable to any astronomical object. It generates a memorable name consisting of a characteristic, a colour, and an animal. With 111 adjectives, 53 colours, and 88 animals, there are a total of 517704 unique designations available, which should be enough to keep everyone going for a while. In this scheme, instead of struggling to remember the difference between SN2010jl and SN2011ja, they could have much more easily distinguishable designations like "scandalous amber llama" and "vacuous azure giraffe".

To assign a memorable name to your object, simply look it up, and if it doesn't already have a memorable name, one will be suggested. Previous assignments are shown on the sky map.