A new Uranium Isotope 'Uranium-241' discovered
Tags: Science and Technology
A team of nuclear physicists of Japan has discovered a previously unknown uranium isotope with atomic number 92 and mass 241.
An overview of the news
The study has been published in the journal Physical Review Letters and the new isotope has been named Uranium-241.
How was uranium-241 found?
To discover uranium-241, researchers accelerated uranium-238 nuclei into plutonium-198 nuclei using the KEK Isotope Separation System (KISS).
In a process called multinucleon transfer, two isotopes exchange protons and neutrons, resulting in nuclear fragments with different isotopes.
The researchers identified uranium-241 and measured the mass of its nuclei using time-of-flight mass spectrometry.
Theoretical calculations suggest that uranium-241 may have a half-life of 40 minutes.
Significance of the discovery
The technique used by the team will help to better understand the shape of large nuclei associated with heavier elements.
The method of discovery can be used for more information on other heavy isotopes.
About Uranium Element
Uranium is a naturally occurring chemical element with the symbol U and atomic number 92.
It is a heavy metal that is radioactive and is found in small amounts in rocks and soil around the world.
Uranium has many isotopes, which are atoms that have the same number of protons but different numbers of neutrons.
Uranium has three isotopes in its natural state, U-234, U-235 and U-238.
Other isotopes that are not found in natural uranium are U-232, U-233, U-236, and U-237.
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