Californium, atomic structure

Californium, atomic structure

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This image is part of the sequence science and technology: atomic structure and data for the elements

Credit: CARLOS CLARIVAN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Californium (Cf). Diagram of the nuclear composition, electron configuration, chemical data, and valence (outer electron) orbitals of an atom of californium-251 (atomic number: 98), the most stable isotope of this element. The nucleus consists of 98 protons (red) and 153 neutrons (orange). 98 electrons (white) successively occupy available electron shells (rings). Californium, named for where it was first synthesised in 1950, is an actinide and transuranic element in period 7, and the f-block of the periodic table. Actinides are soft radioactive metals. Californium-251 has a half-life of 898 years, its nucleus emitting an alpha particle to form curium-247.

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