Periodic Table -> Ununoctium


Ununoctium Details

Ununoctium Symbol: Uuo

Ununoctium Atomic Number: 118

Ununoctium Atomic Weight: (294)

What is Ununoctium?

Ununoctium (symbol Uuo, number 118) is a synthetic, super heavy, transactinide element, also known as element 118 and eka-radon. Ununoctium is the temporary IUPAC name. Transactinides are super heavy elements such as Livermorium, Flerovium, Copernicium, Hassium, Bohrium, and others. These elements have atomic numbers from 104 to 118. They are also transuranium elements and are artificially produced. With the exception of Dubnium and Rutherfordium, all elements are very unstable and have very short half lives. Like other transactinide elements, Ununoctium is manmade, radioactive, and only produced in laboratories. Systemic names are used prior to discovery and isolation. Permanent names are usually given to these elements by the researchers who contributed to their discovery.

Ununoctium’s chemical and physical properties have not been thoroughly studied. Its electron configuration, element category, density, and phase are unknown. Uuo has 118 protons and has the highest atomic mass of all elements. The element is a nonmetal and is predicted to have 6 oxidation states – +6, +4, -1, +2, +1, and 0 and a density of 4.9 grams per cubic centimeter. Its critical point and ionization energies are unknown to science. Ununoctium is expected to behave like a noble gas and is a period 7, p-block element. It is a group 18 element together with noble gases such as Radon, Xenon, Helium, Krypton, argon, and neon. Noble gases are odorless and colorless and are unreactive. Researchers predict that Ununoctium would have similar properties to that of radon. Radon is a dense gas with low melting and boiling points, which is unreactive and colorless. However, scientists expect that Uuo is more reactive than radon, copernicium, and flerovium. The element has an atomic weight of 294 and is solid at room temperature. There is only one isotope, Uuo-294, which is unstable and has a very short half life. Calculations show that isotopes Uuo-302, Uuo-300, Uuo-298, Uuo-297, and Uuo-295 would be more stable. No stable isotopes have been produced so far. No compounds of Ununoctium have been produced but it is predicted that the element would react with hydrogen and fluoride, forming the compounds UuoF4, UuoF2, and UuoH.

Two unsuccessful attempts at discovery were made by the team at Lawrence Berkley and the theoretical physicist Robert Smola?czuk. Ununoctium was discovered by scientists at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and researchers at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research. They used calcium-48 ions to target californium-249 and created Uuo-294 which has a half life of around 0.9 milliseconds. The experiment lasted over 1000 hours, and just 3 atoms were produced. The isotope Uuo-294 decays to Lv-290 through alpha decay. It further decays to flerovium-286 which decays to copernicium-282 through alpha decay or spontaneous fission. The isotope also experiences spontaneous fission. The element was called eka-emanation until the 60s. It was renamed to Ununoctium in 1979. The name given means one-one-eight.

Given that Ununoctium is very unstable and super heavy, it has no commercial applications. It is not a health or environmental hazard because the element does not occur in the earth's crust.

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