New element discovered!

The Periodic Table got a little bigger this week, when scientists for the first time ever synthesized a new, heavy element by bombarding calcium atoms with the rare, heavy, radioactive element berkelium. The resulting atom was a highly unstable heavy element with 117 protons. It’s so hard to make that the research team only produced six atoms of it–for comparison there are about 5,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms in a drop of water.

It’s being called Ununseptium (Latin for 117) for now. It won’t get named until another lab reproduces the experiment to confirm the results–a process that will probably take several years. The New York Times has the full story.

Speaking of elements…

P.S. Super-secret quest extra credit: Write the phrase “Science is Real” somewhere on the first page of Monday’s quest for a free extra credit point. Shhh….

This entry was posted in Science News and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to New element discovered!

  1. Kyle C. says:

    thats a really cool subject, and a really long name. Is there any other types of stuff like this u can put on the class blog?

  2. Charles says:

    When the scientists were experimenting with different atoms were they trying to make a new atom or did it just happen?

  3. matthew says:

    there are actually 5,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms in a drop of water?
    Thats cool, and that song is awesome.

  4. Robert says:

    If scientists made another new element by mashing stuff together, can they try to make a ton of random new elements by mashing random stuff together?

  5. Alex G. says:

    Atom 112 is called copernicuim. It used to be called ununbium.

  6. Nicholas says:

    It is crazy that scientists were only able to make 6 atoms of it. And the fact that there are 5,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms is a DROP of water is also crazy. I wonder how many atoms are in a GLASS of water. First you’d have to find out how many drops there are in a class of water, then multiply that by 5,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 and well all I can say is that that would take a very VERY big calculator

  7. Thomas Li says:

    Cool! So the new element has to be confirmed and the “confirmation” takes years?! Wow!

    Can’t they also smash random atoms together like Robert said?

  8. Roscoe says:

    Wow, a new element. Thats a big deal. Im suprised that they could only get 6 atoms of it!

  9. Peter L says:

    I can’t believe that it is so hard just to create a new element. I thought that all you had to do was just to smash a couple of elements together and you got a new one. Also, i didn’t know that there were 5,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (five sextillion by the way) atoms in a single drop of water. Why do they name new elements with such weird and confusing names?

  10. Coleman! says:

    Who knew there were so many atoms! Its kinda incredible! And if it takes that much it must be crazy hard to make an element! Good for them 😀

  11. Coleman! says:

    I meant it must be crazy to make an element with so little atoms!

  12. Alex Perel says:

    Why is it going to take years for the element to be reproduced? D’ont they no how they first made it. Also how heavy is a heavy element?

  13. James G says:

    WOW! there are a ton of atoms in that! What I also can’t believe is how they can even create a new element because it dissapears in a second or so, right?

  14. Jack says:

    That is a lot of atoms. It’s cool that there is a new element because i didn’t think they could discover a new element since there are so many.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.