The History of Chemistry

107: Transfermium Wars

February 11, 2024 Steve Cohen Episode 107
The History of Chemistry
107: Transfermium Wars
The History of Chemistry +
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Show Notes

We now look at the controversies over discovery and rights to naming elements 104 to 109 in the 1960s to 1990s. The various laboratories included University of California--Berkeley, JINR at Dubna, and GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research in Darmstadt. There were arguments and spats over who discovered what, and what constitutes discovery. Eventually a Transfermium Working Group of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, along with the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics, came to referee the battle--and even that caused more problems.

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