- Published on 24 September 2020
An important achievement of the refined shell model for the nucleus was the prediction of new shell closures at proton number 114 and neutron number 184. In addition, the model predicted decay properties, which led to the expectation that an “island of stability” would be located near these proton and neutron numbers. Experiments confirmed the predicted properties of part of these super-heavy nuclei during the last 20 years. Already in the 1980s, experimentally confirmed was a region of deformed super-heavy nuclei near proton and neutron numbers 108 and 162, respectively. Whereas only a few isotopes could be produced in the discovery experiments, the increase of the experimental sensitivity makes now and in future a more detailed study of these super-heavy systems possible. For this reason, the editors of the European Physical Journal A, N. Alamanos and M.J.G. Borge, suggested that a special edition be devoted to research on super-heavy nuclei and elements.
The Topical Issue focuses on both theoretical and experimental work on the synthesis of these heavy systems, on the stability and decay properties of the produced isotopes, as well as on the electronic structure of an atom formed in the strong electric field of a super-heavy nucleus.
Of interest is the interplay between theory and experiment, and how the results influence each other. On the experimental side, new accelerators are under construction delivering higher beam intensities and also radioactive beams. At higher production rates more and more accurate spectroscopic data are expected. Fusion, multi-nucleon transfer, and reactions with radioactive beams may produce the highly interesting, more neutron rich isotopes expected to have longer lifetimes. Even the production of further new elements seems possible. New experimental data will trigger an improvement of theoretical nuclear models describing nuclear reactions and nuclear stability. Atomic data obtained in, e.g., laser spectroscopic methods deliver input data for relativistic quantum theories describing the atomic and ionic level structure of super-heavy elements. These theories, in turn, can describe the behavior of the electronic states in transitional states of heavy systems up to a critical charge of about Z = 170, where it is expected that the most strongly bound electrons enter the negative energy continuum at −2mec2.
All these developments open a broad and exciting field of research on super-heavy nuclei and elements. The compilation of adequate publications in this Topical Issue of EPJA will provide a source of information on current and future research.
Deadline for submission: 31 October 2021
Guest editors of the special issue:
While the core of the contributions to this Topical Issue is by invitation, well-motivated relevant submissions will be also considered.
Authors are invited to submit their paper electronically through the website https://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/epja. Submissions should be clearly identified as intended for the Topical Issue "Heavy and Super-Heavy Nuclei and Elements: Production and Properties". Three types of manuscripts are admissible to this Topical Issue: reviews, research articles, and short communications. Papers will be published continuously and will appear (as soon as accepted) on the journal website. The electronic version of the Topical Issue will contain all accepted papers in the order of publication. All submitted papers will be refereed according to the usual high standards of the journal.
Manuscripts should be prepared following the instructions for authors available at: http://www.epj.org/images/stories/instructions/instructions_epja.pdf
The LaTeX template can be downloaded at: http://epj.org/images/stories/latex/epj_a_b_d_e.zip
General information about the journal can be found on http://epja.epj.org/
EPJ A is a hybrid journal enabling authors to publish Open Access at no direct cost. For further information on eligible authors please consult the list of “Transformative Read and Publish agreements” on https://www.springernature.com/gp/open-research/institutional-agreements.