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Topic: Element creation?  (Read 13617 times)

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Offline phillyj

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Element creation?
« on: November 10, 2007, 09:01:32 PM »
It was my belief that elements are the basic compounds and they could not be created until my friend told me otherwise. He told me that elements were being created inside the molten areas of Earth and synthetically (I think he said that; its been almost a year) That was news to me. I did some research on it and i could not find too much. Are elements still being made naturally under the high heat/pressure in earth? Will we ever run out of elements then? If all this is possible, then can we make artificial elements like gold, platinum, etc.?

Offline agrobert

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2007, 11:52:12 PM »
You should really try to make gold
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Offline Yggdrasil

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2007, 01:57:42 AM »
Elements are created naturally under conditions of high heat and pressure.  However, the conditions in the Earth's core aren't extreme enough.  You need the high heats and pressures in the core of the sun in order to get nuclear fusion in order to create heavy elements.  I managed to find an article on wikipedia on this, but I can't vouch for its accuracy as I've never heard the term "nucleosynthesis" used before:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nucleosynthesis

Offline enahs

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2007, 10:00:19 AM »
There are also Synthetic Elements:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synthetic_element
Pretty much anything over an atomic number of 93 is synthetic/man-made, as they are very unstable and 'break down' to smaller elements through radioactive decay.


If you click on some of the higher Synthetic Elements on that page, you will see some were created very recently, and how.


Now, you should be able to tell us from your general chemistry and physics why they are unstable, in a general sense.


Offline phillyj

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2007, 01:57:28 PM »
This was what i had thought. so if we run of of a certain element i.e. we can't mine it anymore, our only solution is to extract it from our landfills, waste storages, etc?

Offline Borek

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2007, 02:07:51 PM »
Something like that - or we have to go start exploring Moon, Mars, planetoids and so on. So far that's SF, but thinkable.
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Offline Mitch

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2007, 08:55:45 PM »
Upto element 94 is found in nature!
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Offline phillyj

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2007, 05:06:30 PM »
Upto element 94 is found in nature!

of course they are found but are they continually being made in nature. I think the question was answered and the answer is "no, not on earth, but quiet possibly in some planet and/or star, Celestial body where the pressures and temperatures are great enough.

Offline constant thinker

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2007, 08:26:04 PM »
Upto element 94 is found in nature!

You know people always say uranium is the last natural element, but plutonium can be made when U-238 gains another neutron then decays to I think Np-239 which goes on to become Pu-239. To me, I could see it happening every so often in nature, but not to the degree that plutonium would actually be able to build up.

Mitch is/was doing research in the super heavy elements. I'm surprised his only comment was a small little thing.
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Offline Mitch

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Re: Element creation?
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2007, 02:51:40 AM »
Upto element 94 is found in nature!

of course they are found but are they continually being made in nature. I think the question was answered and the answer is "no, not on earth, but quiet possibly in some planet and/or star, Celestial body where the pressures and temperatures are great enough.
Out of curiosity which element is continually made in nature (on Earth)? I assure you Plutonium is an element that Earth actually tends to readily make, albeit in small amounts. http://www.osti.gov/energycitations/product.biblio.jsp?osti_id=4429051

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