How good are superheavy element Z and A assignments?
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA, USA
a e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published online: 1 December 2016
Proton number, Z, and mass number,A, assignments for newly discovered heavy element nuclides have historically been made by observing α decay to a daughter with well-established Z and A, and then observing the well-know decay of that daughter. For all of the new superheavy element isotopes observed in 48Ca irradiations of actinide targets, this correlation technique has not been possible, because the α-decay chains end in spontaneous fission of previously unknown isotopes. Consequently, Z and A assignments have been made by less-direct means. The superheavy element Z and A assignment methods are summarized, and possibilities for how they may be incorrect are explored. While it is highly likely that most of the superheavy element Z and A assignments are correct, there is a real need for a direct proof.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences 2016
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).