Periodic Table -> Ununpentium


Ununpentium Details

Ununpentium Symbol: Uup

Ununpentium Atomic Number: 115

Ununpentium Atomic Weight: (289)

What is Ununpentium?

Ununpentium (atomic number 115, symbol Uup) is a synthetic, transuranium element which is very unstable and higly radioactive. It is a super heavy post-transition metal also known as element 115 and eka-bismuth. Ununpentium is the temporary name.

Isotopes and Predicted Properties
This is a 7-period, p-block element and the heaviest known pnictogen. Other pnictogens are bismuth, phosphorus, nitrogen, antimony, and arsenic. They are solid at room temperature, the only exception being nitrogen, and have different crystal structures, densities, and melting points. All elements in this group form covalent bonds. Uup has 115 protons and an atomic weight of 289. Given that new isotopes could be isolated in the future, the element’s atomic weight is provisional. It is a group 15 metal with no stable isotopes. Isotopes like Uup-287, Uup-288, Uup-289, and Uup-290 have short half lives. The half life of the longest-lived isotope, Uup-289 is just 220 milliseconds. Uup-290 has a half life of 16 milliseconds. Little is known about its physical and atomic properties. The element is predicted to have 2 oxidation states, 3 and 1. Its density is 13.5 grams per cubic centimeter. Its heat of vaporization, phase, heat of fusion, and atomic radius are unknown. It is predicted that Ununpentium forms compounds such as fluoride, oxalate, carbonate, and hydroxide. It would also form Iodide, Bromide, Chloride, and other compounds. Some of the compounds would be soluble while others – insoluble.

Discovery, Experiments, and Naming
Until recently, Uup was one of the transuranium elements which were only theoretically thought to exist. The first experiment was conducted by a research team at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research. They used Ca-48 to target Am-243 and created 4 Uup atoms. Element 115 decays into Ununtrium, which is a lighter synthetic element. Ununtrium further decays into lighter atoms.
While experiments in 2005 confirmed the existence of the new element, the Joint Working Party refused to confirm the discovery. A team at the Lund University in Sweden conducted further experiments in 2011. The team produced about 30 atoms. Lead researcher Dr. Dirk Rudolph expressed hopes that Uup would soon be included in the Periodic Table of Elements. The experiment was successfully repeated by a team at the Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research in 2013. The existence of 3 transuranium elements was confirmed in 2011 – Copernicium, Roentgenium, and Darmstadtium.

A permanent name will be assigned after review by the IUPAP and IUPAC. The temporary name stands for one-one-five. Heavier isotopes of Uup, Uup-290 and Uup-289 were detected in 2009 and 2010.

Role and Occurrence
Ununpentium does not occur in nature because it is a heavy element with a complex structure. It is only used in scientific research and experimental chemistry. To date, Uup is only used to produce ununtrium. In general, the uses would be very limited because it is a very unstable element. There are no known applications to date. Only a few artificially created elements have commercial applications. Plutonium, for example, is used in space probes and nuclear reactors.

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