Abhilash A*, Prabhu Raj KJ, Gopi Krishna B, Hemalatha M, Dr. Hindustan Abdul Ahad
B. Pharmacy, Balaji College of Pharmacy, Anantapur, AP, India.
It has long been an integral part of school chemistry lessons – and a revision nightmare for students the world over.Now there is one more element to add to the periodic table – and a ‘super-heavy’ one at that.Scientists in Sweden have confirmed the existence of a new chemical element, but its name may need some work.The ‘super-heavy’ man-made element has been temporarily named ‘ununpentium’ and refers to the element’s 115th place in the periodic table. Ununpentium will likely get a new name if the discovery is formally approved by experts from the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics and Chemistry. It presently has an atomic symbol of Uup and is approximately 289 times heavier than hydrogen, which is the lightest element.Researchers at Lund University in Sweden lead the research and said their find backs up claims by teams in Russia and the United States a decade ago that had remained unverified until now.The Swedish scientists say they conducted experiments which allowed them to detect the `fingerprint’ of the short-lived but heavy element.The experiment was conducted at the GSI research facility in Germany.
‘This was a very successful experiment and is one of the most important in the field in recent years’, said Dirk Rudolph, Professor at the Division of Nuclear Physics at Lund University. Besides the observations of the new chemical element, the researchers have also gained access to data that gives them a deeper insight into the structure and properties of super-heavy atomic nuclei.By bombarding a thin film of americium with calcium ions, the research team was able to measure photons in connection with the new element’s alpha decay.Certain energies of the photons agreed with the expected energies for X-ray radiation, which is a ‘fingerprint’ of a given element.Some people have claimed ununpentium is used by UFOs as a component in gravity wave generators, The Telegraph reported.The new element also makes an appearance in computer games including Tomb Raider and Call of Duty, where it is an energy source for weapons and teleporters. However, due to its unstable nature, its uses in the real world are likely to be few and far between.Livermorium, which has the atomic number of 116, is the most recent element to be approved and win a spot on the periodic table in May 2012.