Japanese research institute earns right to name new element

TOKYO - A team of Japanese scientists have met the criteria for naming a new element, the synthetic highly radioactive element 113, more than a dozen years after they began working to create it.

See Full Article

Kosuke Morita, who was leading the research at the government-affiliated Riken Nishina Center for Accelerator-Based Science, was notified of the decision on Thursday by the U.S.-based International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.

"Now that we have conclusively demonstrated the existence of element 113, we plan to look to the unchartered territory of element 119 and beyond," Morita said in a statement.

A joint working group of the IUPAC and International Union of Pure and Applied Physics also announced decisions on recognition of discoveries of elements 115, 117 and 118.

Discoveries of atomic elements have often involved competition between scientists. The news is a morale booster for Riken, which has undergone a reorganization of some of its research following a scandal over stem-cell research.

"To scientists, this is of greater value than an Olympic gold medal," Ryoji Noyori, former Riken president and Nobel laureate in chemistry told reporters.

Riken had earlier said japonium might be proposed as a name for element 113, which provisionally had been named ununtrium.

However, Morita has no specific candidates under consideration. He said he planned to spend part of next year considering a name for the element.

The IUPAC group gave collaborating teams from the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna, Russia; Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee the right to name elements 115 and 117. Separately, scientists from the Dubna laboratory and Lawrence Livermore were invited to name element 118.

Element 113 sits between copernicium and flerovium on the periodic table. A joint team of scientists in Russia and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in the U.S. also were vying for naming rights for 113 after announcing its discovery in 2004.

Morita and his group used Riken's linear accelerator and ion separator to search for new synthetic superheavy elements, beginning in the late 1980s. In 2003, his team began working to create element 113 by bombarding a thin layer of bismuth with zinc ions travelling at about 10 per cent the speed of light, Riken said.

Isotopes of element 113 have a very short half-life, lasting for less than a thousandth of a second, making its discovery very difficult. After twice succeeding to create it, the group tried for seven years before further success, in August 2012.



Advertisements

Latest Tech & Science News

  • Artificial intelligence shows unprecedented detail in global fishing activities

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Researchers are learning more than ever before about the effects humans are having on global fish stocks. It's all thanks to a website — funded in part by actor Leonardo DiCaprio's foundation — that tracks ships and uses a type of artificial intelligence to figure out incredible detail in worldwide fishing patterns. Source
  • 'Tiny trash' a big problem for Canada's shorelines

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Small pieces of plastic and foam topped a list of types of litter found along Canada's shorelines last year, beating out the previous year's winner — cigarette butts. That's because this is the first year The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, a conservation effort between the non-profit group Ocean Wise and the World Wildlife Fund of Canada, have counted the pieces of what the groups call "tiny trash. Source
  • How many new drugs rely on government-funded science? All of them

    Tech & Science CBC News
    This is an excerpt from Second Opinion, a weekly roundup of eclectic and under-the-radar health and medical science news emailed to subscribers every Saturday morning. If you haven't subscribed yet, you can do that by clicking here. Source
  • Police sketch created with DNA technology is potentially useless or even misleading, says scientist

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Calgary police hired a U.S. biotech company to create a picture of a woman using only her DNA, but a scientist says the evidence behind the technology to create the image simply isn't there. Source
  • Neanderthals, not humans, created these cave paintings in Spain

    Tech & Science CBC News
    From the murky depths of Spanish caves comes a surprising insight: Neanderthals created art. That's been proposed before, but experts say two new studies finally give convincing evidence that our evolutionary cousins had the brainpower to make artistic works and use symbols. Source
  • Neanderthals, not modern humans, created these cave paintings

    Tech & Science CBC News
    From the murky depths of Spanish caves comes a surprising insight: Neanderthals created art. That's been proposed before, but experts say two new studies finally give convincing evidence that our evolutionary cousins had the brainpower to make artistic works and use symbols. Source
  • Science Says: European art scene began with Neanderthals

    Tech & Science CTV News
    NEW YORK - New discoveries in some Spanish caves give the strongest evidence yet that Neanderthals created art. The key finding was the age of some previously known cave paintings and decorated seashells. European researchers found they were created before our species arrived in Europe. Source
  • Fishing industry has massive global footprint: study

    Tech & Science CTV News
    HALIFAX -- Global fishing efforts are so wide ranging that fleets covered more than 460 million kilometres in 2016 -- a distance equal to going to the moon and back 600 times. That startling revelation is contained in a newly published study in Science that quantifies fishing's global footprint for the first time. Source
  • Twitter bars tactics used by 'bots' to spread false stories

    Tech & Science CBC News
    Twitter Inc. said on Wednesday it would no longer allow people to post identical messages from multiple accounts, cracking down on a tactic that Russian agents and others have allegedly used to make tweets or topics go viral. Source
  • Social media may be pushing more millennials to turn to cosmetic procedures, clinics say

    Tech & Science CBC News
    At age 27, Vanessa Alaumary has already had several cosmetic procedures. She started getting injectables a few years ago and says many of her friends also started in their early 20's. Selfie craze triggers surge in cosmetic procedures Source