Ever hear a sci fi character in a TV or movie say something like, “This artifact is formed from elements science cannot identify”?
That well just got a little deeper.
There’s a feeling of grand design when something so ingrained in our educational foundation is altered. We’ve become desensitized to the ever-evolving landscape of geography, but our understanding of science is much more rigid. So, when something as elementary as the Periodic Table changes, it shakes our understanding of the world as we know it.
Until today our Periodic Table of Elements had a few holes in it. Earlier, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) announced the addition of four new elements to our beloved table effectively filling those holes. The elements added are 113, 115, 117, and 118. These four elements complete the seventh row of the periodic table. This is the first time an element has been added to the table since 2011.
Element 113 (temporarily known as Uut: Ununtrium) was discovered by a team in Japan while 115, 117, and 118 (ununpentium, Uup; ununseptium, Uus; and ununoctium, Uuo respectively) were discovered in a joint effort by scientists from Russia and the US. All of these elements will be given official names and permanent symbols soon. The scientists have been invited to be a part of that process. According the to IUPAC:
New elements can be named after a mythological concept, a mineral, a place or country, a property or a scientist.
More information regarding the elements will be published in the IUPAC journal Pure and Applied Chemistry in early 2016.
What would you name your element?