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The innermost electrons of element 173...
Posted on Monday, January 18, 2016 @ 02:23:54 EST by vlad

Science A fascinating article "How many more chemical elements are there for us to find?" published on bbc.com by Philip Ball, concludes in a very intriguing manner: "...Like everything else at these tiny scales, it all comes down to quantum mechanics.

This tells us, among other strange things, that pairs of particles can sometimes pop into existence out of nothingness. One of the particles will be made of matter and the other out of antimatter: for example, one might be an electron and the other its antimatter counterpart, a positron. Normally, the two immediately collide and annihilate each other.

It turns out that the innermost electrons of element 173 might be in an unusual, unstable state that can evoke these "virtual" particles.


If one of these electrons gets kicked out of its shell, for example by zapping it with an X-ray, it will leave a hole behind. This hole will be filled by an electron that appears out of nothing. But for this electron to form, a positron must also form, and this will be emitted by the atom.

In other words, the electron clouds of these really huge elements might occasionally burp out particles of antimatter.

So even if there is no end to the periodic table, there may be strange stuff awaiting us in its furthest reaches. Whether we will ever explore these extreme elements is another matter entirely."

Please read the full article: http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20160115-how-many-more-chemical-elements-are-there-for-us-to-find

 
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"The innermost electrons of element 173..." | Login/Create an Account | 1 comment | Search Discussion
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Discoveries that made Stephen Hawking famous (Score: 1)
by vlad on Thursday, January 21, 2016 @ 22:38:17 EST
(User Info | Send a Message) http://www.zpenergy.com
Another great public article about Stephen Howking and the deep, fundamental problems he tackled about this strange Universe we live in: These are the discoveries that made Stephen Hawking famous

The legendary physicist has helped explain the behaviour of black holes and even examined the origin of the universe


Full article: http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20160107-these-are-the-discoveries-that-made-stephen-hawking-famous
[www.bbc.com]



 

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