As 2019 is the year of the period table, it is fun to consider some of the lesser-known aspects of this powerful and useful way to organize the building blocks of our world. This talk will review some of the history of elements and the efforts to develop an understanding of nature. It will also explore the existence of isotopes (roughly translated from Greek as “at the same place”) of the elements. We think of elements as unchanging, but this is not correct. Radioactivity is evidence for one element changing into another and is a part of nature. A somewhat related topic was the goal of alchemists to transform metals to gold, the element that was considered perfect, and to find a path to perfection. They had no idea of radioactivity, or of what it would really take to change one element into another. We will look at the transformation of elements from a modern perspective and talk about how at least part of the goal of alchemy has been achieved by research laboratories such as FRIB.
April 27, 2019
Location: 640 South Shaw Lane, 1300 FRIB Laboratory, MI
Phone: (517) 908-7262
Time: 10:30 AM