Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna, today celebrate the opening of the international recognition of the 114th and the 116th element of the periodic table.
The statement was published in the journal «Pure and Applied Chemistry» at the beginning of the summer, and sdelanounas wrote about this recognition, but the official announcement of the long-awaited event was followed by only 2 September 2011 on the all-institute research seminar, held at the Laboratory of Nuclear Reactions behalf of Mr. . N. Flerova. A report on the history and prospects for the discovery of new superheavy elements made supervisor of the laboratory Academician Yuri Hovhannisyan.
Academician Yuri Hovhannisyan at the map of the "island of stability." Photo by Yuri Tumanov.
The history of scientific research, which for decades was conducted in leading laboratories around the world in an attempt to synthesize the 114 and 116 items and get the experimental proof of the existence of the so-called "Island of stability" in the transuranium region, prolonged in time, scientists have tried for many-valued options and is very saturated on heat of human emotions — from despair to hope. Many attempts of synthesis of these elements, taken by scientists not only Russia but also the United States, France, Germany, Japan, led to a zero result. So, for example, to synthesize element 114 in 1985 tried a powerful international collaboration, formed by five research centers in Germany, the USA and Switzerland. The experiment ended in failure, and then among scientists appeared pessimistic opinion that the "island of stability" of superheavy elements, perhaps even exists, but can not prove it.
This view is refuted Dubna scientists who proposed a new method of synthesis of superheavy elements, and who managed in the most difficult period for Russian science in the 90s not only upgrade the accelerator, but also to create new equipment, which has improved the sensitivity of the experiment 300 times! In late 1998 and early 1999 in Dubna, in two different experiments, was synthesized element 114, in 2000 — 116. The application for the discovery of new elements was filed in 2005, but for the decision of the Joint Commission of Experts of International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) and physics (IUPAC) it took six years: apparently, physicists were so stunned by the fantastic achievements of scientists in Dubna, confirming that experiments were started only at the end of the first decade of the new century (and the first one was delivered in 2007 at the JINR).
— I do not remember when so much was done confirming experiments in different laboratories — seven times! — Jury Tsolakovich Hovhannisyan. — Few believed in it, even not believe. But when put experiments and found that it is — there was the joy of discovery.
The synthesis of elements 114 and 116, said academician Hovhannisyan, determines the development of the physics of heavy nuclei in the years ahead, it will have a major impact on the development of related sciences — chemistry, nuclear physics, astrophysics, and others.
International recognition of the opening of these two elements is also important because it was the first step towards formal recognition of four new super-heavy elements synthesized in Dubna scientists in recent years: the 113th, 115th, 117th and 118th, materials on which is also being considered experts IUPAC and IUPAR.
— It is easier, — Notes Yu.C. Hovhannisyan — scored two "peg", and from them you can move on. Figuratively speaking, the "stove" is, from where you can dance.
Experiments Dubna scientists and their colleagues at other research centers around the world on the synthesis of superheavy elements help to answer the question that faces mankind since the beginning of its history, where the limit of the material world? It may be recalled that, initially in the periodic table contained only 63 elements, and the great Niels Bohr believed that other elements under the number 100 can not be. In Dubna already brought the score to 118 th and preparing new experiments by creating the more powerful accelerator (it will increase the intensity of a beam of 10) and parallel to studying the chemical properties of the already synthesized elements — it is also a huge field of scientific research, giving birth to new fundamental knowledge.
— In the history of civilization and humanity, — Says another Dubna academician Dmitry V. Shirkov, — interesting obvious — obvious to all, and therefore incredible. What is the greatness of Einstein? He realized that all the obvious thing — academic time is always the same — incredible, place the twins in orbit, and they will grow old at different rates. In the experiments mentioned by Yuri Ts Hovhannisyan, managed to do the same — to break the prejudice, and people began to think in new ways.
Perhaps, in these words, made wise by experience, scientists have concluded the highest score a few manage to advance human knowledge so drastically.
After the decision made by experts and IUPAC IUPAR, Dubna scientists as the discoverers of elements 114 and 116 have the right to propose their names. What will they be? Yu.Ts.Oganessian answered this question as follows:
— The names of the elements remain for centuries, so they must be highly motivated. We have collaborators, whose opinion we also need to learn. I think the answer will be given at the end of October.
At the conclusion of the seminar director of the Laboratory of Nuclear Reactions, JINR Professor Sergey Dmitriev congratulated Academician Yuri Hovhannisyan and JINR Vice-Director Professor Michael Itkis with high recognition of their merits in the development of studies on the synthesis of superheavy elements — awarded the State Prize of the Russian Federation in 2010.
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