Waistlines aren’t the only thing that got heavier during the holidays. The International Union of Pure and Applied Physics got into the holiday spirit by crediting the Laboratory and its collaborators with the discovery of super heavy elements 115, 117 and 118.
The announcement means those three elements are one step closer to being named.
Lawrence Livermore teamed with the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Dubna, Russia in 2004 to discover elements 113 and 115. LLNL worked again with JINR in 2006 to discover element 118. The LLNL/JINR team then jointly worked with researchers from the Research Institute for Advanced Reactors (Dimitrovgrad), Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Vanderbilt University and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, to discover element 117 in 2010.
This discovery brings the total to six new elements reported by the Dubna-Livermore team (113, 114, 115, 116, 117, and 118, the heaviest element to date). The IUPAC announced that a Japanese collaboration officially discovered element 113. In 2011, the IUPAC confirmed the name Livermorium for element 116 to honor Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the city of Livermore, California.
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