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As I complete the masthead for a book, I see that the publisher has sent me a .png for the new (to me) "printed on acid free paper" symbol — there's a version of it on Wikipedia,

enter image description here

but after a quick and lazy search I haven't found any discussion about the history or status of the symbol.

I also don't find "acid" in the Unicode character index (accessed 20120919), so I'm guessing this thing hasn't made it into Unicode yet.

Is there a standard LaTeX command to generate it? Or shall I make do with \includegraphics?


Edit: The forms I've seen look like the Arabic numeral 8 rotated counterclockwise 90° and placed in a circle. I wonder if an infinity sign is not actually what is intended, rather than an eight. But I'm not sure who to ask.

Edit 2: Actually, the publisher has identified it as U+267E, so that gives me another way to enter it. In the several fonts where OS 10.8 finds it present, it is indeed an infinity-sign inside.

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  • If the .png is sufficiently hi-res for high-quality printing, why not just include what the publisher sent you? I think it's usual to include icons or symbols into a masthead which aren't ordinary letters by any measure. Sep 19, 2012 at 17:38
  • Note that Wikipedia lists it as "An approximation of the acid-free-paper symbol"...
    – Werner
    Sep 19, 2012 at 17:42
  • @StephanLehmke: Actually, the original .png isn't very sharp. Wikipedia's is sharper, but it doesn't look very good, either. Sep 19, 2012 at 17:57
  • So ask your publisher for a print-quality version, preferably PDF. It's his responsibility anyway that the right symbol is displayed (maybe he even got a certificate on the durability or whatever). Sep 19, 2012 at 18:18
  • @StephanLehmke: Well, you're offering a reasonable solution for the larger problem. But I'm just wondering if this symbol has made its way into LaTeX. I'd always prefer a wholly LaTeX solution, if possible. Sep 19, 2012 at 18:21

1 Answer 1

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The symbol is in Unicode

U+267E PERMANENT PAPER SIGN

Wikipedia, Acid-free paper, says:

Manufacturers of acid-free paper can indicate the compliance of their product with the test requirements of the ISO 9706 or ANSI Z39.48-1992 standards using a circled infinity symbol (Unicode codepoint 267E, ♾)

I have not found the symbol in The Comprehensive LaTeX Symbol List. There is not a "standard" command in LaTeX for this symbol.

Unicode/OpenType/TrueType fonts

These fonts require LuaLaTeX or XeLaTeX.

The glyph is contained in Deja Vu Sans:

\documentclass{standalone}
\usepackage{fontspec}
\setmainfont{DejaVuSans.ttf}
\pagestyle{empty}
\begin{document}%
^^^^267e%
\end{document}

Permanent paper sign with Deja Vu Sans

Font XITS/xits-regular.otf:

Permanent paper sign with XITS

Font STIXGeneral-Regular/STIXGeneral.otf:

Permanent paper sign with STIXGeneral-Regular

Solution with TikZ

Without a font that contains the symbol, it can be constructed with tikz, for example:

\documentclass{standalone}
\usepackage{tikz}
\pagestyle{empty}
\begin{document}
\tikz\node[circle,draw,inner sep=.1ex] {$\infty$};
\end{document}

Permanent paper sign via tikz


Edit: If you are using LuaLaTeX or XeLaTeX, then the symbol can be used directly as unicode character:

\usepackage{fontspec}
...
\begingroup
  \fontspec{STIXGeneral.otf}
  ♾% or ^^^^267e%
\endgroup

The TikZ solution also works with other TeX compilers.

I have edited the examples to use document class standalone. Thus the examples generate a PDF page with the symbol. The margins are cropped entirely (solution via TikZ) or to the bounding box of the characters (solutions with Unicode fonts). The PDF file can directly be included in pdflatex (or xelatex). Or it can be converted to PostScript to support latex/dvips, e.g. via pdftops of xpdf:

pdftops -eps PermanentPaperSign.pdf PermanentPaperSign.eps

Alternative converters: ghoscript, …

This avoids including a bitmap file (.png).

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  • I've marked this as the accepted answer, even though the one thing I was really wondering — whether LaTeX has a command specifically for this symbol — is not answered here. The answer to that seems to be "not yet". Sep 19, 2012 at 23:50

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