Physicists Claim to Have Synthesized Superheavy Element 117 for the First Time

A team of Russian physicists claims to have, for the first time, synthesized element 117. This element does not occur in nature and the sample was created in a laboratory:

A team led by Yuri Oganessian of the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna, Russia, reports smashing together calcium-48 — an isotope with 20 protons and 28 neutrons — and berkelium-249, which has 97 protons and 152 neutrons. The collisions spit out either three or four neutrons, creating two different isotopes of an element with 117 protons.[...]

The researchers briefly spotted signs of element 117 during two runs of collisions lasting 70 days each. In their paper, the researchers report observing the heavier isotope of element 117 decay with a half-life of 78 milliseconds; they measured the lighter one’s half-life at 14 milliseconds.

The new element, which has yet to be named, slips into a place on the periodic table between elements 116 and 118, both of which have already been discovered. Such superheavy elements are usually very radioactive and decay away almost instantly. But many researchers think it is possible that even heavier elements may occupy an “island of stability” in which superheavy atoms stick around for a while.

Link via Wired | Image: NASA

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Johnny Cat, I believe I remember something about sending a stream of particles at element 116 and they totally reversing their charge, creating antimatter. Combine the matter and antimatter and you get total annihilation with perfect energy creation. Very interesting stuff.
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When will they reach the elusive Island(s) of Stability and the Supercontinent of Stability or even Eternity that still lies beyond the horizon...

Why- these scientists start to look like the Old day Seafarers like Columbus or Brendan or Eiric Raude...! "No trust us- we have to sail even further since beyond the Distant Horizon- there lies the Island of Stability and Beyond that - The Vast Continent of Eternity....! ---Just as sure as this egg will stand upright!"
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