The new elements – 113, 115, 117 and 118 – were discovered by scientists from Japan, Russia and the United States and confirmed by officials from the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). These are the first elements to be added to the table since 2011, when elements 114 and 116 were added. The table was first created in 1869 by Russian scientist Dmitri Mendeleyev.
According to The Guardian, IUPAC announced that a team of US and Russian researchers at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California had produced sufficient evidence to claim the discovery of elements 115, 117 and 118. The discovery element 113, which had also been claimed by the Russian and American scientists, was awarded to a team of Japanese scientists from the Riken institute. This is the first element of the periodic table to be discovered by Asian scientists. Kosuke Morita, who led the team that made this discovery even went on to say that they now plan to investigate the element 119.
“The chemistry community is eager to see its most cherished table finally being completed down to the seventh row,” said Professor Jan Reedijk, president of the Inorganic Chemistry Division of IUPAC. “IUPAC has now initiated the process of formalising names and symbols for these elements temporarily named as ununtrium, (Uut or element 113), ununpentium (Uup, element 115), ununseptium (Uus, element 117), and ununoctium (Uuo, element 118).”
The names of the new elements, all discovered within scientific experiments, may be inspired by a mythological concept, a mineral, a place or country, a property, or even a scientist.