When are heavy nuclei most stable? - Yahoo! Answers

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** When are heavy nuclei most stable? **

when they contain more protons than neutrons
when they contain more neutrons than protons
when they contain equal numbers


Source: answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20070704014007AAEDUYR


when are heavy nuclei most stable


Island of stability - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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** Island of stability **

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
3-dimensional rendering of the theoretical island of stability around N=178
and Z=118

The *island of stability* in nuclear physics describes a set of as-yet
undiscovered isotopes of transuranium elements which are theorized to be
much more stable than others. Specifically, they are expected to have
radioactive decay half-lives of at least minutes or days as compared to
seconds, with "some optimists" expecting half-lives of millions of
years.^[1]Klaus Blaum expects the island of stability to occur in the
region near ^300Ubn.^[2]

*Contents*

· 1 Theory and origin
· 2 Half-lives of the highest-numbered elements
· 3 Island of relative stability
· 4 Synthesis problems
· 5 See also
· 6 References
· 7 External links

*Theory and origin[edit]*

The possibility of an "island of stability" was first proposed by Glenn T.
Seaborg in the late 1960s^[3]. The hypothesis is based upon Nuclear shell
model, which implies that the atomic nucleus is built up in "shells" in a
manner similar to the structure of the much larger electron shells in
atoms. In both cases, shells are just groups of quantum energy levels that
are relatively close to each other. Energy levels from quantum states in
two different shells will be separated by a relatively large energy gap. So
when the number of neutrons and protons completely fills the energy levels
of a given shell in the nucleus, the binding energy per nucleon will reach
a local maximum and thus that particular configuration will have a longer
lifetime than nearby isotopes that do not possess filled shells.^[4]

A filled shell would have "magic numbers" of neutrons and protons. One
possible magic number of neutrons for spherical nuclei


Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Island_of_stability

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