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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Properties of Group Five and Group Seven transactinium elements

  • Author(s): Wilk, Philip A.
  • et al.

The detection and positive identification of the short-lived, low cross section isotopes used in the chemical studies of the heaviest elements are usually accomplished by measuring their alpha-decay, thus the nuclear properties of the heaviest elements must be examined simultaneously with their chemical properties. The isotopes 224 Pa and 266,267 Bh have been studied extensively as an integral part of the investigation of the heaviest members of the groups five and seven of the periodic table. The half-life of 224 Pa was determined to be 855 plus/minus19 ms by measuring its alpha-decay using our rotating wheel, solid state detector system at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory 88-Inch Cyclotron. Protactinium was produced by bombardment of a bismuth target. New neutron rich isotopes, 267 Bh and 266 Bh, were produced in bombardments of a 249 Bk target and their decay was observed using the rotating wheel system. The 266 Bh that was produced decays with a half-life of approximately 1 s by emission of alpha particles with an average energy of 9.25 plus/minus 0.03 MeV. 267 Bh was observed to decay with a 17 s half-life by emission of alpha-particles with an average energy of 8.83 plus/minus 0.03 MeV. The chemical behavior of hahnium, Ha (element 105) was investigated using the fast on-line continuous liquid extraction and detection system SISAK-LISSY. Hahnium was not observed in this experiment following transport and extraction. Protactinium was used as on-line test of the apparatus to determine the experimental efficiency of the entire system. Unfortunately, the amount of protactinium observed after the extraction, compared to the amount produced, was extremely small, only 2.5 percent. The extraction of the protactinium isotope indicated the efficiency of the apparatus was too low to observe the extraction of hahnium. The chemical behavior of oxychloride compounds of bohrium was investigated by isothermal gas adsorption chromatography in a quartz column at 180, 150, and 75 C. It was found to be less volatile than the corresponding compounds of the lighter group seven homologues, rhenium and technetium, which had been measured previously with the same apparatus. Assuming the bohrium compound to be BhO3Cl, the evaluated standard adsorption enthalpy, and delta-Hads, of BhO3Cl on the quartz surface was calculated from Monte Carlo fits to the volatility data to be -75 kJ/mol. The adsorption enthalpies for TcO3Cl and ReO3Cl are -51 and -61 kJ/mol respectively.

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