Can You Really Buy the Stars?

stars in sky at night

There’s a wide range of the names for stars, planets, and constellations in the night sky. Some of these names root back to Arabic, Greek or Latin like Vega, the brightest shining star in the summer sky.

You may have also heard of people naming stars after their loved ones, which is also possible. Keep reading to learn more about how you can buy the stars. 

How Are Stars Named

The International Astrological Union (IAU) gets a ton of requests from people who want to buy or name stars after people. There are even businesses who offer these services for a fee. You should know that when you name a star through these companies there is no official or formal validity to this. 

The same is true when you buy star clusters and galaxies. There are special procedures in assigning and officially naming these stars, and commercial transactions are not involved here.  

While some bright stars have proper Arabic, Latin or Greek names, most of the stars are named by their alphanumeric designations. This consists of an acronym and an index number or celestial position, like “HR 7001, 2MASS J18365633+3847012”.

What Stars Are Named After

The reason why stars are named by their alphanumeric designations is that’s how these stars can be easily located, described and discussed. These alphanumeric designations are sorted by the position which makes them easy to look up. 

The precise coordinates or the star’s position in the sky makes it easy to find these stars. Small groups of well-known groups are named such as planets or stars you can see with the naked eye. But names don’t make sense when you have to catalog millions of stars.

There are stars that have been named for cultural reasons, such as for purposes of mythology, agricultural seasons, navigation and time-keeping. Stars are also named for scientific purposes like proximity, variability, or unusual properties. 

The IAU, who is legally responsible for naming objects in the sky, has formally recognized a couple of hundred of proper names for stars from the Working Group on Star Names (WGSN) and for some exoplanet, hosts stars through the IAU Executive Committee Working Group on Public Naming of Planets and Planetary Satellites.

How To Buy The Stars 

You can still buy a star and name it from private groups, but know that your star name won’t be officially recognized by the IAU. When you buy a star from one of these companies which you can see here, they will name a star for you and loved one. 

There’s even a company that will register that name in a Geneva, Switzerland, vault, and place that name in a copyrighted catalog. While this sounds pretty official, you should know that this catalog and name will never be used by a scientific institution. 

Here’s what that process entails.

Decide How Much Money You Want To Spend

Again, since your purchase will not be officially recognized by science, you should think about how much you want to spend on your star. Again, you won’t actually own the star, it will be more of a novelty, which still makes a great gift.

You also can skip the official process altogether, and find a random star in the sky, and print out your own certificate on your computer.

This is essentially what these companies are doing. You will save money, and still, have the joy of a certificate with whatever name you want to name a ball of gas. 

Decide What You Want To Buy

Different star-selling services have different options on what kind of star you can buy. You can buy an entire star system with some companies, or a binary star, which is two stars that orbit around each other from other businesses. Each of these options will come at different prices. 

Think About What Kind Of Star You Want

There are various types of stars in the universe, and this includes but isn’t limited to red giants, blue giants, red dwarfs, and neutron stars. 

Red Dwarfs

These are the most common stars in the galaxy. They are red in color and cool in temperature. 

Neutron Stars

These stars come from supernova explosions. These stars rotate incredibly fast. 

Red Giants 

These are huge dying stars, who’s temperature is half as hot as the sun’s temperature. 

Blue Giants 

These stars are rare, but also incredibly bright. Blue giants are about 60,000 times brighter on average than the sun. 

Buying Your Star

Now that you have decided who you want to buy your star for, how much money you want to spend, and what kind of star or stars you want to buy, it’s time to buy your star.

All star-selling companies will let you name your star and give you a personalized matted certificate with your star’s name on it. There are some services that offer more.

You might also get stickers, keychains, engraved zodiac pendants, star charts, access online to live telescope streams, and an option to launch your star with a message into space. 

Pick A Name For Your Star

You can name your star after anything. It can be your name, the named of a loved one, even the name of your favorite band. You can’t change the name of your star once you decide. 

Place Your Order 

When filling out the needed paperwork, you’ll want to include your name, the name of the star, and your address and billing information. 

If there are any special spellings of the star name, make sure you indicate that. If you have any directions you want on your certificate like if the star is for an in memoriam, you’ll want to include that. 

Receive Your Shipment

Once you order your package and whatever that includes, you should get everything in the mail. 

Buy A Star Today 

Now that you know how to buy the stars, get a star for a loved one today. Sure, it might not be officially recognized by science, but this still makes a great gift. For more lifestyle advice, be sure to check out our blog.