display | more...
Arthurdent: the new name for Asteroid 18610. On May 10, 2001 (the day before Douglas Adams' death), the minor planet centre of the International Astronomical Union proposed the name for asteroid 18610, discovered in 1998.

Arthurdent was proposed by Felix Hormuth, of the Starkenburg Observatory in Germany, who spotted the space rock. The announcement from the minor planet centre said: "The earthling Arthur Dent is confronted with the adversities of life, the universe and everything in a highly amusing and entertaining way in Douglas Adams's famous five volume trilogy ... "

And isn't there something marvellously Hitchhiker-ish in having a 'minor planet centre'?

Asteroid 18610, named for Arthur Dent, a protagonist in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy book series by Douglas Adams. The asteroid was discovered 7 February 1998 by German amateur astronomer Felix Hormuth, and its name was approved by the Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts on May 9, 2001 - two days before Adams's death at age 49.

Arthurdent "is a member of the main belt, a few kilometres in diameter, with a four-year orbit between Mars and Jupiter that comes nowhere near the Earth" (New Scientist).

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.