2143 Jimarnold

This minor planet is named after James R. Arnold (1923 - 2012), American chemist at the University of California at San Diego. He is notable for his pioneering work in cosmochemistry, and his contributions to science include applying nuclear chemistry to analyses of lunar geology, and developing Monte Carlo models for meteorite trajectories. He was one of the science consultants of early NASA, and helped develop the protocols for handling returned lunar samples.

In 2013 [1], his son Ken Arnold proposed a symbol for this asteroid. In his words:

"[…] the family of Dr. James R. Arnold has decided that the appropriate symbol for 2143 jimarnold is […] the interrobang, a punctuation mark that combines a question mark and an exclamation point. It represents Jim Arnold’s combination of an intense, wide-ranging curiosity (question mark) and his interest in the answers uncovered and insistence upon working with the resulting reality (exclamation mark)."

I think this is an interesting and well-justified symbol, and I think the creation of it by a family member of James Arnold lends it more credence as a symbol than any I could come up with. Thus, the symbol for this minor planet is an interrobang, a question mark with a dot and a vertical line bisecting it through the top. The symbol ‽ is represented in Unicode as U+203D.

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[1] "Symbol for an asteroid?" Ken Arnold, Eclectifying, 25 February 2013, retrieved 20 September 2018. http://peak.im/ken/2013/02/25/60/


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