A PETITION has been launched to name a new element in honour of the late fantasy author Sir Terry Pratchett and his Discworld book series.

Element 117 was recently confirmed by the International Union of Applied Chemistry.

The petition, which was set up by The Chronicle Flask, is calling for the element to be named Octarine with the proposed symbol Oc (pronounced ook).

Pratchett lived in Broad Chalke and died on March 12, 2015, aged 66 after battling Alzheimer’s disease. His books sold 85 million copies worldwide and were translated into 36 different languages.

The first of Pratchett’s Discworld novels, The Colour of Magic, was published in 1983. And his final book in the series, The Shepherd’s Crown, was released last August.

The petition said: “He was well-known as a lover of science and, with two well-known science writers, co-wrote a series of four books called The Science of the Discworld, which took a sideways look at ‘roundworld’ (Earth) science.

“Octarine, in the Discworld books, is known as the colour of magic, which forms the title of Pratchett’s first ever Discworld book. According to Disc mythology, octarine is visible only to wizards and cats, and is generally described as a sort of greenish-yellow purple colour, which seems perfect for what will probably be the final halogen in the periodic table. Octarine is also a particularly pleasing choice because, not only would it honour a world-famous and much-loved author, but it also has an ‘ine’ ending, consistent with the other elements in group 17.

“Octarine is being counted as a mythological concept under IUPAC rules, which state that elements must be named after “a mythological concept or character; a mineral, or similar substance; a place or geographical region; a property of the element; or a scientist”. The Discworld stories are certainly stories about gods and heroes, and 70 million books surely count for something.”

More than 49,600 people have supported the online petition. To sign it, the petition go to change.org and search for element 117 Octarine.