Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Picture snapped at Deutsches Museum in Munich

A few weeks back it was announced that one of the periodic table elements, Ununbium, (Uub in the table above)  is getting a name. Several heavy elements that are stable in theory remain placeholders with generic names until they can be shown to exist, i.e.. can be created in laboratory. In 1996, The Helmholtz Institute Centre for Heavy Ion Research produced the element, and now that results have been replicated by independent researchers, Ununbium has been christened Copernicium.

The group has decided to name the element in the tradition of naming new elements after famous scientists (see Einsteinium, Curium, Bohrium, Fermium). So once again it’s time to go out and buy a new periodic table to hang on the wall. You have one hanging over your bed too, right?

See: BBC News

Side note: I’m going to plug the trivia site Sporcle, which subtitles itself “mentally stimulating diversions”. Their periodic table quiz (already updated) is unequalled and has actually improved my knowledge of the elements. Extremely useful for times when I really need to know my Hafnium from my Iridium.

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