4 new elements added to periodic table

  • 05/01/2016

The periodic table's seventh row has been filled after four new elements have been discovered and officially added to the table.

This instantly renders science textbooks around the world out of date.

The elements, discovered by scientists in Japan, Russia and America, are the first to be added to the table since 2011, when elements 114 and 116 were added, The Guardian reports.

They were verified on December 30 by the US-based International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), the global organisation that governs chemical nomenclature, terminology and measurement.

Ryoji Noyori, former Riken president and Nobel Laureate in chemistry told The Guardian, "to scientists, this is of greater value than an Olympic gold medal".

The elements will be officially named by the teams that discovered them in the coming months.

Element 113 will be the first element to be named in Asia.

"The chemistry community is eager to see its most cherished table finally being completed down to the seventh row," said Professor Jan Reedijk, president of the Inorganic Chemistry Division of IUPAC.

"IUPAC has now initiated the process of formalising names and symbols for these elements temporarily named as ununtrium, (Uut or element 113), ununpentium (Uup, element 115), ununseptium (Uus, element 117), and ununoctium (Uuo, element 118)."

These elements can be named after a mythological concept, a mineral, a place or country, a property or a scientist.

The four new elements, all of which are synthetic, were discovered by slamming lighter ­nuclei into each other and tracking the following decay of the radioactive super-heavy elements.

Like other super-heavy elements that populate the end of the periodic table, they only exist for fractions of a second before decaying into other elements.

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