Chemistry lovers all over the world had a reason to be exultant earlier this week – four more new elements were discovered which apparently completed the 7th row of the famed (in my case, the dreaded) periodic table. I don’t think I was interested in chemistry ever in my life – except maybe a little bit in organic chemistry (to this day, I know that dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane is DDT) and the chemistry between me and my wife!
The discovery of the new elements led to a flood of overjoyed reactions in the chemical world, I must say. Some of the reactions suggested this discovery being even greater than the Olympic Gold! It’s an interesting thing this periodic table. All I can understand is that it has 18 columns and 7 rows or blocks with apparently similar items bunched together in the columns. There is Boron and Barium; Silicon and Selenium; Tantalum and Thallium; Radon and Radium – don’t these names sound like the names of twins? Certainly more fraternal than identical.
The new elements have been given temporary names until they will be formally named by the teams who found them. The names for the 113th, 115th, 117th and 118th elements as it stands now are Ununtrium, Ununpentium, Ununseptium and Ununoctium. Perhaps, they should save everybody’s time and just name it unpronounceable!
There are the noble gases – how noble could gases become? Krypton, Xenon and Argon could vie for the title of Duke of Chemistry or the Duchess of Chemistry. A Kryptonite attack could be stopped by Duke Krypton or Duke Radon!
Perhaps there should not have been any periodic table. What will they do when all rows have been filled but there are still other elements that are to be discovered? There will be Periodic Table 2.0, I guess! Students, lovers, followers and practitioners of Chemistry, the way you learn, understand and use the subject will be unimaginably altered!
All in a lighter vein, folks!