Science: Bomb-Born Elements

Like children of a secret marriage, Elements 99 and 100 have been belatedly recognized. In a letter to the Physical Review, groups of scientists at the University of California, Argonne National Laboratory and Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory told how they separated the two new elements out of radioactive debris collected from Test Mike, the thermonuclear device exploded in the Pacific in November 1952.

The elements were formed when neutrons from the explosion hit atoms of uranium 238 and were captured by its nucleus. In the case of Element 99, the U-238 captured 15 neutrons...

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