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Scientists discover element 117

Posted on Wednesday, April 07 2010 @ 21:25:13 CEST by


NY Times reports a team of Russian and American physicists has discovered a heavy new element. For the moment, the discovery will be known as ununseptium, a Latinate placeholder that refers to the element's atomic number (117). The element was manufactured in a particle accelerator by smashing together isotopes of calcium and a radioactive element called berkelium.
The element, still nameless, appears to point the way toward a brew of still more massive elements with chemical properties no one can predict.

The team produced six atoms of the element by smashing together isotopes of calcium and a radioactive element called berkelium in a particle accelerator about 75 miles north of Moscow on the Volga River, according to a paper that has been accepted for publication at the journal Physical Review Letters.

Data collected by the team seem to support what theorists have long suspected: that as newly created elements become heavier and heavier they will eventually become much more stable and longer-lived than the fleeting bits of artificially produced matter seen so far.
Full details at NY Times.


 



 

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