This dinosaur is named after the Greek mythological figure Aeolus, Keeper of the Winds in Homer's Odyssey, because of the frequent winds that blow across Patagonia, where the remains were found. The generic name also includes the Greek sauros ('lizard'), the traditional suffix used in dinosaur names. The specific name (A. rionegrinus), refers to its location, in the Rio Negro Province of Argentina. Both genus and species were named and described by Argentine paleontologist Jaime Powell in 1987.
The holotype of Aeolosaurus rionegrinus consists of a series of seven tail vertebrae, as well as parts of both forelimbs and the right hindlimb. It was discovered in the Angostura Colorada Formation in Argentina, which dates from the Campanian stage of the Late Cretaceous, about 83 to 74 million years ago.
Relationships among the many titanosaurian sauropods are hazy at best, but Aeolosaurus has been tentatively linked to a few other genera, based on features of the tail vertebrae, including Rinconsaurus and Adamantisaurus.Gondwanatitan and Aeolosaurus both exhibit neural spines on the tail vertebrae that point forwards, a feature not seen in any other known titanosaurians
The vertebrae from the middle part of its tail had elongated centra.Aeolosaurus had vertebral lateral fossae that resembled shallow depressions.Fossae that similarly resemble shallow depressions are known from Saltasaurus, Alamosaurus, Malawisaurus, and Gondwanatitan.Venenosaurus also had depression-like fossae, but its "depressions" penetrated deeper into the vertebrae, were divided into two chambers, and extend farther into the vertebral columns.