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List of astronomical objects named after people

There are probably a few thousand astronomical objects named after people. These include the names of a few thousand asteroids and hundreds of comets. Also, many topological features on solar system bodies have been named after people, including many hundreds of craters on the Moon, Mars and other planets and satellites. In addition to craters there are also various other topological features such as mountains, valleys, ridges on the Moon and other bodies which are also named after people. Finally, several stars are named after people (according to the IAU), such as Barnard's star (Star-registry companies keep lists of stars they claim to have named after people. The IAU does not recognize those claims.). There's also a number of Deep-Sky objects named after astronomers and scientists. The list below shows most of them.

Alphabetic list of Deep-Sky objects named after people (star clusters, gaseous nebulae, galaxies, galaxy clusters, pulsars, etcetera...)Edit

A most interesting source to detect a veritable cornucopia of this sort of names is the SKY CATALOGUE 2000.0, VOLUME 2 (Double Stars, Variable Stars, and Nonstellar Objects), especially the chapter Glossary of Selected Astronomical Names, and also Hugh C. Maddocks' handy booklet DEEP-SKY NAME INDEX 2000.0 (Foxon-Maddocks Associates).

  • Ambartsumian's Knot is NGC 3561C, Arp 105(C), in Ursa Major.
  • Arp's Galaxy is a compact dwarf galaxy in Ursa Major.
  • Arp's Loop is an arc-like feature near spiral galaxy Messier 81 in Ursa Major. See APOD (Astronomy Picture of the Day) of 2013 April 16.
  • Baade's Windows are Sagittarius I and II (low-absorption regions near globular cluster NGC 6522).
  • Barbon's Galaxy is Markarian 328 in Pegasus.
  • Barnard's "E" Nebula is the combination of the dark nebulae Barnard 142 and 143, both shaped like an "E", in Aquila. Also called "Triple Cave".
  • Barnard's Loop is Sharpless 2-276 in Orion.
  • Barnard's Galaxy is NGC 6822 in Sagittarius.
  • Barnard's Merope Nebula is the reflection nebula IC 349 / NGC 1435 at the star Merope of the Pleiades star cluster in Taurus.
  • Barnard's "S" Nebula is the dark snake-shaped (or "S"-shaped) nebula in Ophiuchus.
  • Baxendell's Unphotographable Nebula is NGC 7088 (aka Cederblad 193) in Aquarius.
  • Becklin-Neugebauer Object is an infra-red source in the Orion Nebula (Messier 42).
  • Bode's Nebulae are the galaxies Messier 81, 82, and NGC 3031, 3034, in Ursa Major.
  • Bok's Valentine is ESO 210-6A in Vela.
  • Brocchi's Cluster is the open star cluster Collinder 399 in Vulpecula, aka "the coathanger", aka Al-Sufi's Cluster.
  • Burbidge Chain is a galaxy chain northeast of NGC 247 in Cetus.
  • Burnham's Nebula is the T Tauri Nebula (not NGC 1555).
  • Caroline's Cluster is open star cluster NGC 2360 in Canis Major. Named after Caroline Herschel.
  • Caroline's Rose is open star cluster NGC 7789 in Cassiopeia (also called White Rose). Named after Caroline Herschel.
  • Chu's Object is a diffuse bright nebula in Perseus.
  • Coddington's Nebula is galaxy IC 2574 in Ursa Major.
  • Copeland's Septet is galaxy cluster HCG 57 (Hickson Compact Group 57) in Leo.
  • De Mairan's Nebula is a section of the well-known Orion Nebula (Messier 42).
  • Fourcade-Figueroa Object is located 3° from NGC 5128, in Centaurus.
  • Gabriela Mistral Nebula is NGC 3324 in Carina. This nebula is unique in the list because it is not named after an astronomer or scientist, it is named after the Chilean poet Gabriela Mistral (her face shows up in the nebula). See APOD (Astronomy Picture of the Day) 2018 April 6.
  • Gould's Belt is an extension of the Orion Spiral Arm (of our own galaxy).
  • Gomez's Hamburger (or Gomez's Nebula) is IRAS 18059-3211, a bipolar nebula in Sagittarius.
  • Graham's Object is a ring galaxy in Volans (also known as Das Rheingold / Niebelungen Ring).
  • Gum Nebula in Vela. Seems to be the largest nebula in the sky, according to the SKY CATALOGUE 2000.0, VOLUME 2.
  • Gyulbudaghian's Nebula is the variable cometary nebula HH 215 in Cepheus.
  • Hanny's Voorwerp is a curious greenish looking object near IC 2497 in Leo Minor.
  • Hardcastle Nebula is a barred spiral galaxy in Centaurus.
  • Herschel's Missed Planetary is the planetary nebula 0907 -6957 in Carina.
  • Herschel's Ray is the pencil-shaped NGC 2736 in Vela.
  • Hertzsprung's Object is a possible plate defect, once mistaken for a real deep-sky object (in Camelopardalis).
  • Hoag's Object is PGC 54559, a peculiar ring galaxy in Serpens Caput.
  • Hoffmeister's Cloud is a dark nebula in Microscopium.
  • Hubble's Double Bubble is Hubble 5 in Sagittarius.
  • Hubble's Variable Nebula is NGC 2261 in Monoceros.
  • Huchra's Lens is also called Einstein's Cross, in Pegasus.
  • Keenan's System is the galaxycluster NGC 5216-8 (Arp 104) in Ursa Major.
  • Kemble's Cascade Star Chain is a binocular-friendly chain of stars in Camelopardalis, named after Father Lucian Kemble (who reported about its existence to Walter Scott "Scotty" Houston).
  • Kleinmann-Low Nebula is an infrared source in the well-known Orion Nebula (Messier 42).
  • Komossa's Object is an elliptical galaxy in Virgo (RX J1242-11).
  • Kowel's Object is the Sagittarius Dwarf Irregular Galaxy (SAGDIG).
  • Kutner's Cloud is Lynds Dark Nebula (LDN) 1524, in Taurus.
  • Lindsay-Shapley Ring is a peculiar ring galaxy in Volans.
  • Longmore's Group (PGC 47203) in Centaurus.
  • Lord Rosse's Nebula is the Whirlpool Galaxy in Canes Venatici (Messier 51).
  • Lower's Nebula is Sharpless 2-261 (part of Cederblad 64) in Orion.
  • Markarian's Chain is a chain of galaxies in Coma Berenices (Messier 86 to 88).
  • Mayall's Object is a cigar-shaped galaxy with ring, in Ursa Major (Arp 148 / VV 32).
  • McLeish's Object is a galaxy in Pavo.
  • McNeil's Nebula is a nebula near Messier 78 in Orion.
  • Minkowski's Footprint is diffuse bright nebula M1-92 in Cygnus.
  • Minkowski's Object is a peculiar galaxy near NGC 541, in Cetus.
  • Ney-Allen Nebula is an infrared source around the star Theta-1 Orionis.
  • Pazmino's Cluster is an asterism in Camelopardalis, also known as the open star cluster Stock 23. It received the name Pazmino's Cluster thanks to amateur-astronomer John Pazmino.
  • Pickering's Triangular Wisp is a section of the Veil Nebula (a supernova remnant) in Cygnus.
  • Platais' Oddball is the open star cluster NGC 6791 in Lyra. Named after the astronomer Imants Platais.
  • Popovic's Object is a possible plate defect, appearing on a 1911 photographic plate.
  • Ptolemy's Cluster is the open star cluster Messier 7 (NGC 6475) in Scorpius.
  • Schaeberle's Flaming Star Nebula is IC 405 / Cederblad 42 in Auriga.
  • Schuster's Spiral is also known as the Horologium Dwarf.
  • Scotty Houston's Hole-in-a-Cluster is open star cluster NGC 6811 in Cygnus. Named after Walter Scott "Scotty" Houston, one of the most dedicated amateur-astronomers and popularizers of telescopic observing of deep-sky objects.
  • Seyfert's Sextet is a galaxycluster around NGC 6027 A-E (VV 115), in Serpens.
  • Stephan's Quartet / Stephan's Quintet is a galaxycluster around NGC 7317 (is Arp 319), in Pegasus.
  • Struve's Lost Nebula is NGC 1554 in Taurus.
  • Tempel's Nebula is NGC 1435 in Taurus (near the star Merope of the Pleiades cluster).
  • Thackeray's Globules are located in Centaurus (IC 2944).
  • Westbrook Nebula (in Auriga), named after William E. Westbrook.
  • Wild's Triplet is galaxycluster Arp 248 (VV 35) in Virgo.
  • Wolf-Lundmark-Melotte System (WLM System) is DDO 221 (a galaxy) in Cetus.
  • Zwicky's Triplet is Arp 103 (galaxycluster) in Hercules.

Note: this alphabetic list is still incomplete, several pinpoint locations of the mentioned objects are about to be included.


This alphabetic list does not include astronomical objects named after mythological or fictional characters.

For other lists of eponyms (names derived from people) see eponym.
For a list of eponyms sorted by names see List of eponyms.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit