Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Soon after the Big Bang, heavier elements emerge: Tin-100, a doubly magic nucleus

Date:
June 20, 2012
Source:
Technische Universitaet Muenchen
Summary:
A few minutes after the Big Bang the universe contained no other elements than hydrogen and helium. Physicists have now succeeded in producing tin-100, a very unstable yet important element for understanding the formation of heavier elements.

A view of the experiment at the GSI from a perspective against the beam direction. The fragments are stopped at the center of a "hedgehog" of 105 liquid nitrogen-cooled gamma ray detectors, where the precise time point of the beta decay and the released decay energy are measured.
Credit: Thomas Faestermann / TUM

A few minutes after the Big Bang the universe contained no other elements than hydrogen and helium. Physicists of the Technische Universitaet Muenchen (TUM), the Cluster of Excellence "Universe" and the Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research (GSI) have now succeeded in producing tin-100, a very unstable yet important element for understanding the formation of heavier elements.

The researchers report on their results in the current edition of the scientific journal Nature.

Stable tin, as we know it, comprises 112 nuclear particles -- 50 protons and 62 neutrons. The neutrons act as a kind of buffer between the electrically repelling protons and prevent normal tin from decaying. According to the shell model of nuclear physics, 50 is a "magic number" that gives rise to special properties. Tin-100, with 50 protons and 50 neutrons, is "doubly magic," making it particularly interesting for nuclear physicists.

Shooting xenon-124 ions at a sheet of beryllium, the international team headed by physicists from the TU Muenchen, the Cluster of Excellence Origin and Structure of the Universe and the GSI in Darmstadt succeeded in creating tin-100 and analyzing its subsequent decay. Using specially developed particle detectors, they were able to measure the half-life and decay energy of tin-100 and its decay products. Their experiments confirmed that tin-100 has the fastest beta decay of all atomic nuclei, as previously predicted by theoretical physicists.

A repeat of the experiment is slated for the near future at the RIKEN research center in Japan. The beam intensity at RIKEN is higher in the mean time, allowing even more precise measurements. The aim of the research work is to improve the understanding of processes in the formation of heavy elements during explosions on the surface of compact stars. In addition, the researchers hope to draw conclusions on the neutrino mass from the measurements.

This work was supported by the BMBF, by the GSI, by the DFG-Cluster of Excellence Origin and Structure of the Universe, by the EC within the FP6 through I3-EURONS and by the Swedish Research Council.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Technische Universitaet Muenchen. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. C. B. Hinke, M. Böhmer, P. Boutachkov, T. Faestermann, H. Geissel, J. Gerl, R. Gernhäuser, M. Górska, A. Gottardo, H. Grawe, J. L. Grębosz, R. Krücken, N. Kurz, Z. Liu, L. Maier, F. Nowacki, S. Pietri, Zs. Podolyák, K. Sieja, K. Steiger, K. Straub, H. Weick, H.-J. Wollersheim, P. J. Woods, N. Al-Dahan, N. Alkhomashi, A. Ataç, A. Blazhev, N. F. Braun, I. T. Čeliković, T. Davinson, I. Dillmann, C. Domingo-Pardo, P. C. Doornenbal, G. de France, G. F. Farrelly, F. Farinon, N. Goel, T. C. Habermann, R. Hoischen, R. Janik, M. Karny, A. Kaşkaş, I. M. Kojouharov, Th. Kröll, Y. Litvinov, S. Myalski, F. Nebel, S. Nishimura, C. Nociforo, J. Nyberg, A. R. Parikh, A. Procházka, P. H. Regan, C. Rigollet, H. Schaffner, C. Scheidenberger, S. Schwertel, P.-A. Söderström, S. J. Steer, A. Stolz, P. Strmeň. Superallowed Gamow–Teller decay of the doubly magic nucleus 100Sn. Nature, 2012; 486 (7403): 341 DOI: 10.1038/nature11116

Cite This Page:

Technische Universitaet Muenchen. "Soon after the Big Bang, heavier elements emerge: Tin-100, a doubly magic nucleus." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 June 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120620133318.htm>.
Technische Universitaet Muenchen. (2012, June 20). Soon after the Big Bang, heavier elements emerge: Tin-100, a doubly magic nucleus. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120620133318.htm
Technische Universitaet Muenchen. "Soon after the Big Bang, heavier elements emerge: Tin-100, a doubly magic nucleus." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120620133318.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Space & Time News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Supply Ship Takes Off for International Space Station

Supply Ship Takes Off for International Space Station

AFP (July 30, 2014) — The European Space Agency's fifth Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV-5) is takes off to the International Space Station on an Ariane 5 rocket from French Guiana. Duration: 00:34 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship

Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship

AP (July 30, 2014) — Arianespace launched a rocket Tuesday from French Guiana carrying a robotic cargo ship to deliver provisions to the International Space Station. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

AP (July 30, 2014) — Every summer, tourists make the pilgrimage to Chincoteague Island, Va. to see wild ponies cross the Assateague Channel. But, it's the rockets sending to supplies to the International Space Station that are making this a year-round destination. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Russia Saves Gecko Sex Satellite, Media Has Some Fun With It

Russia Saves Gecko Sex Satellite, Media Has Some Fun With It

Newsy (July 27, 2014) — The satellite is back under ground control after a tense few days, but with a gecko sex experiment on board, the media just couldn't help themselves. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:  

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile iPhone Android Web
    Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins