Physicists determine dripline for fluorine and neon isotopes | 10/15/2019 | Staff
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An international team of physicists with the BigRIPS experiment taking place at the RIKEN Radioactive Isotope Beam Factory in Japan has determined the dripline for fluorine and neon isotopes. In their paper published in the journal Physical Review Letters, the researchers describe how they found the driplines and where their research is headed next.

One of the goals of physics research is to discover some of nature's limits—in this new effort, the researchers were looking to determine how many neutrons could be added to a nucleus before they stop sticking to one another, leading to dripping out. Such a limit is known as the dripline. Prior researchers have already found the dripline for a number of elements—all eight of the lightest of them, for example. Doing so for the heavier elements has been challenging. In this new effort, the researchers sought to find the dripline for fluorine, sodium and neon. Prior research has shown that adding neutrons to a nucleus increases its atomic number when the maximum is found—but there are exceptions. The driplines for isotopes such as nitrogen-23, carbon-22 and oxygen-24 are all 16 neutrons, for...
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