Co-precipitation behaviour of single atoms of rutherfordium in basic solutions

Yoshitaka Kasamatsu, Keigo Toyomura, Hiromitsu Haba, Takuya Yokokita, Yudai Shigekawa, Aiko Kino, Yuki Yasuda, Yukiko Komori, Jumpei Kanaya, Minghui Huang, Masashi Murakami, Hidetoshi Kikunaga, Eisuke Watanabe, Takashi Yoshimura, Kosuke Morita, Toshiaki Mitsugashira, Koichi Takamiya, Tsutomu Ohtsuki, Atsushi Shinohara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


All superheavy elements (SHEs), with atomic numbers (Z) ≥104, have been artificially synthesized one atom at a time and their chemical properties are largely unknown. Because these heavy nuclei have short lifetimes as well as extremely low production rates, chemical experiments need to be carried out on single atoms and have mostly been limited to adsorption and extraction. We have now investigated the precipitation properties of the SHE Rf (Z = 104). A co-precipitation method with samarium hydroxide had previously established that the co-precipitation behaviour of a range of elements reflected these elements’ tendency to form hydroxide precipitates and/or ammine complex ions. Here we investigated co-precipitation of Rf in basic solutions containing NH3 or NaOH. Comparisons between the behaviour of Rf with that of Zr and Hf (lighter homologues of Rf) and actinide Th (a pseudo-homologue of Rf) showed that Rf does not coordinate strongly with NH3, but forms a hydroxide (co)precipitate that is expected to be Rf(OH)4. [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)226-230
Number of pages5
JournalNature Chemistry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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