Seaborgium is a radioactive chemical element, which is artificially produced and possesses a very short half-life. Chemically, it is similar to tungsten and it is a transitional metal. The other name of this element is Unnilhexium (Unh). This element was named after the great American chemist, Glenn T. Seaborg. He was an American nuclear physicist, honored with the Nobel prize. He also discovered many other transuranium elements. In this article, we will focus on the properties and facts of this element, apart from its history and uses.
This element was created in 1974, at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, by a collaboration of Lawrence Berkeley and Lawrence Livermore, headed by E. Kenneth Hulet and Albert Ghiorso. They produced this nuclide called seaborgium 263106, with the bombardment of californium (249Cf) with oxygen (18O) ions, by the help of a machine known as super heavy ion linear accelerator. This collision of ions produced seaborgium-263 atoms, along with four free neutrons.
|Atomic Mass||(263.0) amu|
|Melting Point||Not Known|
|Boiling Point||Not Known|
|Crystal Structure||Not Known|
|Density @ 293 K||Not Known|
|Other Name||Unnilhexium (Unh)|
|Electron Configuration*||[Rn] 7s2 5f14 6d4|
|Electron Per Shell*||2, 8, 18, 32, 32, 12, 2|
* The electron configuration and distribution of electrons per shell given, are predicted ones.
One of the very interesting facts is that it is an unstable metallic chemical element and the instability of this element makes it difficult, rather impossible to find it in nature. So, it is mostly synthesized in the laboratories and not present in nature like other common elements. As this element has a very short half-life and costs a lot to produce, it is not used for commercial purposes like many other synthetic heavy elements. Its unstable nature does not allow it to stay with anything for more than a few seconds. This element has 106 protons and electrons, along with 157 neutrons, in an atom. It has seventeen isotopes that range from 258Sg to 273Sg. This element is different and unique, hence its uses are restricted.
According to its physical properties, seaborgium is assumed to be solid, but its density is still not known. Even its reactivity with air is not known, because it was made in a very small quantity, but its behavior is predicted to be similar to tungsten and molybdenum. Same goes for its reactivity to water, halogens, acids, and bases. As there is very little information about this element, the applications are limited. It is a synthetic element, so it is not available freely in the environment. The unstable property of this element, makes it impossible to study or research its effects on human body, because it is decomposed into another element as soon as it is formed. Hence, its health effects are also unknown. Apart from its unknown effects on the human body, effects on environment and other properties are still a mystery, because it has a short half-life, that is of just twenty-one seconds.
The isolation of seaborgium has not been achieved. Some of the other isotopes of this element are made by bombarding neon atom to get californium isotopes. As we know that the transitional elements are good conductors of heat and electricity, as well as, ductile and malleable, these properties expected to hold true for seaborgium.