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Four new elements to be added to periodic table

Officials from the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) have confirmed the discovery of elements 113, 115, 117, and 118, announcing that there is now enough evidence to give them permanent places on the periodic table, which means they’ll also need new, official names.

periodic table

Credit: 2012rc/Wikimedia

A Russian-American team at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California discovered elements 115, 117 and 118, while Japanese researchers were credited for discovering element 113.

All four elements are not found in nature, and were synthetically created in laboratories. Until now, these elements had temporary names and symbols on the periodic table as their existence was hard to prove. Since they decay extremely quickly, scientists found it difficult to reproduce them more than once.

Watch: Understanding Periodic Table

Japanese researchers said their search for element 113 began by "bombarding a thin layer of bismuth with zinc ions travelling at about 10% the speed of light." By doing so, they would theoretically fuse, forming an atom of element 113.

While reports on the confirmation of elements 115, 117, and 118 are yet to be published, details of element 113’s discovery have been reported in the Journal of Physical Society of Japan.

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