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What is Einsteinium, the mysterious element named after Albert Einstein?

  • Posted By
    10Pointer
  • Categories
    Science & Technology
  • Published
    9th Feb, 2021

Context

  • A team of scientists at the Berkeley Lab has reported some of the properties of element 99 in the periodic table called “Einsteinium”, named after Albert Einstein.

About Einsteinium

  • Einsteiniumis a synthetic element with the symbol Es and atomic number 99.
  • It is a member of the actinide series.
  • It is the seventh transuranic element. 
  • It was discovered in 1952 in the debris of the first hydrogen bomb.
  • It has been under-tested because it is difficult to create and is highly radioactive.
  • Therefore, very little is known about this element.

What did the researchers find?

  • The team worked with einsteinium-254, one of the more stable isotopes of the element that has a half-life of 276 days.
  • The most common isotope of the element, einsteinium 253 has a half-life of 20 days.
  • Because of its high radioactivity and short half-life of all einsteinium isotopesit has mostly decayed. This is the reason that it cannot be found in nature and needs to be manufactured.

How the research is significant?

  • Functioning: Scientists find out how it bonds with atoms.
  • Chemical analysis: Scientists can find out interesting chemical properties of other elements and isotopes that may be useful for nuclear power production and radiopharmaceuticals.