"The Heaviest Elements" by Julia Even (U of Groningen)

Friday, 18 January 2019 from to (Europe/Amsterdam)
at Nikhef ( H331 )
The hunt for new chemical elements reached so far proton number 118. In 2016, the IUPAC/IUPAP Joined Working Party validated the discovery of the elements with the proton number 113, 115, 117, and 118. They were named nihonium, moscovium, tennessine and oganesson and received their place in the periodic table of the elements.

It is still an open question if this elements appear in nature. To understand the origin and the abundance of chemical elements, we need to combine our knowledge on nuclear and astrophysics. The formation of elements heavier than bismuth with a proton number Z=83 can be explained by the rapid neutron-capture (r-) process. The r-process requires an environment with a high-density neutron flux like in a neutron star merger. The exact path and the endpoint of the r-process along the nuclear landscape are still not known. These depend on the nuclear properties of neutron-rich isotopes involved -such as half lives, decay modes, neutron capture cross sections and for heavier elements also the height of the fission barriers.

In my talk, I will introduce the experimental techniques which are used to produce and study exotic nuclei in the laboratory. Furthermore, I will present some recent highlights from the heavy element region and as well as my NEXT project (NEXT: Neutron-rich EXotic nuclei produced in multi-nuclear Transfer reactions).