Where do variable stars get their
From the General Catalog of Variable Stars, we find that the naming
convention for variable stars (many of which
are X-ray sources)
is not as straightforward as you might think. They start at R (instead of A)
and go through the alphabet and double alphabet in a non-intuitive way.
When they get to this point, instead of moving on to AAA or RRR, they go to
V and start with the number after the total number of previously named
|Letters|| ||# of them
|R, S, ..., Z, || ||9
|RR, RS, ..., RZ, SS, ST, .., SZ, TT, ..., ZZ,|| ||45
|AA, AB, ..., AZ, BB, ...QZ, || ||280 (but no J !)
V335, V336, ...
As of a recent (1995) name list, the total number of designated variable
stars has now reached 31,193. Sagittarius has the most of any
constellation: it's now up to V4333 Sgr.