On February 23, 2016, Yuri Oganessian, the scientific director of the Flerov Laboratory of Nuclear Reactions, discovered new chemical elements and figured out how to prolong their life.
The discoveries of Yuri Oganessian brought the scientific world to the threshold beyond which subsequent elements will live not less and less but rather longer and longer – and this is a revolution.
Laboratory scientists managed to obtain elements 113, 115, 117, and 118 – here begins an island of stability in the Mendeleev system where heavy elements do not disappear immediately after occurrence.
“We’ve been in the milliseconds and even microseconds. But now, we have seconds again, and their ‘daughters’ will live for hours, and their ‘great-granddaughters’ will live for days. Even longer if we go further – now, we’re just at the foot of the mountain… How long they will be able to live on the top of the mountain is maybe thousands or even millions of years,” said Oganessian.
It is doubly nice to make a discovery when there are strong competitors around. In the US, Germany, and Japan, scientists have been trying to find new chemical elements, but it was in Dubna where four elements were discovered at once. Soon, the discoveries were confirmed by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.