Physics of Atomic Nuclei

, Volume 66, Issue 6, pp 1137-1145

First online:

New outlook on the possible existence of superheavy elements in nature

  • A. MarinovAffiliated withRacah Institute of Physics, Hebrew University
  • , S. GelbergAffiliated withRacah Institute of Physics, Hebrew University
  • , D. KolbAffiliated withDepartment of Physics, University GH Kassel
  • , R. BrandtAffiliated withKernchemie, Philipps University
  • , A. PapeAffiliated withIReS-UMR7500, IN2P3-CNRS/ULP

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A consistent interpretation is given to some previously unexplained phenomena seen in nature in terms of the recently discovered long-lived high-spin super-and hyperdeformed isomeric states. The Po halos seen in mica are interpreted as being due to the existence of such isomeric states in corresponding Po or nearby nuclei that eventually decay by γ or β decay to the ground states of 210Po, 214Po, and 218Po nuclei. The low-energy 4.5-MeV α-particle group observed in several minerals is interpreted as being due to a very enhanced α transition from the third minimum of the potential-energy surface in a superheavy nucleus with atomic number Z=108 (Hs) and atomic mass number around 271 to the corresponding minimum in the daughter.