Rutherfordium (Rf) is a chemical element of the periodic table, located in the group 4 and the period 7, and has the atomic number 104. It is a silvery-white transition metal, which is named after British physicist, Ernest Rutherford. It is a transuranium element and is counted as one of the radioactive elements.
Rutherfordium on periodic table
|– d block|
Rutherfordium is a d-block element, situated in the fourth column and the seventh row of the periodic table, denoted by the atomic number 104 and chemical symbol Rf.
Rutherfordium element information
|Rutherfordium is found in the fourth column of the periodic table below the hafnium element.|
|Origin of name||named after British physicist, Ernest Rutherford|
|Atomic number (Z)||104|
|Atomic radius||150 pm (estimated)|
|Covalent radius||157 pm (estimated)|
|Melting point||2100 ℃, 3800 ℉, 2400 K (predicted)|
|Boiling point||5500 ℃, 9900 ℉, 5800 K (predicted)|
|Electron configuration||[Rn] 5f14 6d2 7s2|
|Learn how to write: Rutherfordium electron configuration|
|Electrons per shell||2, 8, 18, 32, 32, 10, 2|
|Learn how to draw: Rutherfordium Bohr model|
|Crystal structure||Hexagonal close-packed (hcp) (predicted)|
|Phase at r.t||Solid (predicted)|
|Density near r.t||17 g/cm3 (predicted)|
|Oxidation state||+3 (predicted), +4|
|Discovered at||Joint Institute for Nuclear Research and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in 1964-1969|
History of rutherfordium
Rutherfordium was first synthesized in 1964 by a joint team of Russian and American scientists at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Dubna, Russia, and at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBL) in California, USA.
The element was named after Ernest Rutherford, a New Zealand physicist who is known for his pioneering work in nuclear physics. Rutherford’s contributions to the field included the discovery of the atomic nucleus, the development of the first “artificial” nuclear reaction, and the concept of radioactive half-life.
The synthesis of rutherfordium was achieved by bombarding a target of plutonium-242 with accelerated nuclei of neon-22. The resulting reaction produced a few atoms of the new element, which were detected using a system of detectors and separators. The team at Dubna proposed the name “kurchatovium” for the new element, in honor of Igor Kurchatov, a Soviet physicist who was instrumental in the development of the Soviet atomic bomb. However, the American team at LBL suggested the name “rutherfordium” instead.
The discovery of rutherfordium was confirmed in 1969 by scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, who produced additional atoms of the element using a different method. Since then, several other laboratories around the world have produced small quantities of rutherfordium using various methods.
Occurrence and production
Rutherfordium is a synthetic element that does not occur naturally on Earth, and is produced through the bombardment of other elements with high-energy particles in a nuclear reactor or particle accelerator.
The most common method for producing rutherfordium involves the use of a nuclear reactor to bombard a target material with neutrons. The target material used is usually a heavy metal such as plutonium-239 or uranium-238. When the neutrons collide with the target material, they cause the atoms to become unstable and undergo nuclear reactions. If the conditions are right, rutherfordium atoms may be produced as a result of these reactions.
Another method for producing rutherfordium involves the use of particle accelerators. In this method, beams of particles such as protons or alpha particles are directed at a target material. If the energy of the particles is high enough, they may be able to overcome the repulsive forces between the target material’s nucleus and the particle’s own nucleus, causing a nuclear reaction to occur that may produce rutherfordium atoms.
The production of rutherfordium is a complex and difficult process due to the element’s short half-life and the high levels of radiation involved in its production. As a result, only small amounts of rutherfordium have been produced, and its properties and behavior are not well-understood.
Properties of rutherfordium
Rutherfordium is expected to be a solid metal at room temperature, with a silvery-white appearance. It is predicted to have a high melting point and boiling point, similar to those of hafnium and zirconium.
Rutherfordium is a highly reactive element and is expected to form compounds with oxygen, halogens, and other elements. It is predicted to be less reactive than its lighter homologues, hafnium and zirconium.
The electronegativity of rutherfordium is not well-established, but it is expected to be similar to that of other group 4 elements. Its electron configuration suggests that it may have a lower electronegativity than hafnium and zirconium.
Rutherfordium has no stable isotopes. Its most stable isotope, rutherfordium-267, has a half-life of about 1.3 hours. Several other isotopes have been identified, with half-lives ranging from a few seconds to a few minutes.
Rutherfordium is a highly radioactive element, and its isotopes decay through various modes of radioactive decay, including alpha decay and spontaneous fission. The high levels of radiation emitted by rutherfordium make it difficult to study and handle.
Uses of rutherfordium
Rutherfordium is a synthetic element that does not occur naturally on Earth. It has a very short half-life and is highly radioactive, which makes it difficult to study and handle. As a result, rutherfordium has no practical applications.
However, the properties of rutherfordium and its isotopes have been studied in depth for their contributions to the understanding of nuclear physics. Rutherfordium is a heavy element, and its behavior can provide insight into the behavior of other heavy elements and the mechanisms of nuclear reactions.
In addition, the study of rutherfordium and other transuranic elements has important implications for the management and disposal of nuclear waste. The behavior of these elements in nuclear reactors and their decay products can affect the safety and stability of nuclear waste storage facilities. Understanding the behavior of rutherfordium and other transuranic elements can help improve the safety and security of nuclear waste storage.
Interesting facts about rutherfordium
Rutherfordium is named after the physicist Ernest Rutherford, who is known for his contributions to the understanding of the structure of the atom and radioactivity. The name was officially recognized by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) in 1997.
Rutherfordium was first synthesized by bombarding a target of californium-249 with high-energy neon ions. The resulting nuclear reaction produced three atoms of rutherfordium-257, which decayed into other isotopes within a matter of milliseconds.
Rutherfordium is highly unstable and has a very short half-life, which makes it difficult to study. Its most stable isotope, rutherfordium-267, has a half-life of only about 1.3 hours.
Rutherfordium is produced in very small quantities in nuclear reactors by bombarding heavy metal targets with neutrons. It is used mainly for scientific research and has no practical applications.
Rutherfordium’s properties and behavior have been studied in depth for their contributions to the understanding of nuclear physics. It is a heavy element, and its behavior can provide insight into the behavior of other heavy elements and the mechanisms of nuclear reactions.