Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Periodic table's design gets an elemental challenge

Filed under
Sci/Tech

For more than 100 years, the periodic table has been a symbol of the intrinsic organization of matter and a mainstay of science classrooms everywhere.

Many people have attempted to better the arrangement of the 111 fundamental elements, but no one has been able to supplant the original, created in 1869 by Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev with 63 known elements.

Now, a challenger has arrived: Ecologist Philip Stewart of the University of Oxford in England has designed a table that is fueling intense interest.

What makes his table distinct is its galaxy design. "It should be looked at like a work of art as much as a work of science," says Stewart, who was inspired by a design he saw at an exhibition devoted to rebuilding after World War II.

"I always thought it had a galaxy look to it; then I had the idea to put it on a starry background."

It also remedies the traditional table's shortfalls. The traditional table arranges the elements in rows and columns. From left to right, the atomic number — the number of protons in the nucleus of an atom — increases. Chemically similar elements are grouped in columns.

The new design has the elements spiral out from the center of neutronium in increasing atomic number. The elements form spokes that correspond to the original table's columns.

The rare earth elements are left out of the traditional table and relegated to footnotes or printed below the table. In Stewart's, they join their neighbors, tracing starry arcs of increasing atomic number.

Another design improvement corrects the original table's problem of elements that are actually neighbors being artificially separated.

Teachers hope the design will inspire young scientists, but there is debate over its usefulness.

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

DisplayLink USB 3.0 Driver Now Available for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, Fedora Linux

DisplayLink has recently updated their DisplayLink USB 3.0 driver for the latest Ubuntu Linux operating system launched by Canonical in the last week of April 2016, Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. Read more

Next Generation Gear Fit 2 to run Tizen Operating System, Leaked Images

The first Gear Fit product by Samsung ran a Real Time Operating System (RTOS) and this seems to have been a good decision for them for the first generation Gear Fit. Now, as the Gear Fit 2 is on the horizon, it looks like Samsung are ready to use the Tizen Operating System in this wearable device as well. According to industry sources Samsung will introduce the Gear Fit 2 next month in Korea running Tizen. The move to use Tizen extensively in its current and future wearable products demonstrates the commitment Samsung has to the OS in this space, as we now have a smartband as well as smartwatches !!! Another future wearable product that will be using Tizen, according to Industry watchers, is tentatively called “Activity Tracker”, which would suggest a low end fitness device. Read more

Sabayon ARM Project Brings the Gentoo-Based Distro to Raspberry Pi 3 and 2 SBCs

The developers of the Gentoo-based Sabayon GNU/Linux operating system have announced a new project, called Sabayon ARM, which aims to bring the distro to Raspberry Pi devices. Read more

Ubuntu BQ Aquaris M10 Review – Part 1: Hardware

The mobile market today has practically been what former Microsoft-then-Nokia-then-Microsoft-again exec Stephen Elop loved to refer to as a two-horse race. Android and iOS have been butting heads quarter after quarter, year after year. Despite their popularity and ubiquity, neither is truly perfect and neither can really meet everyone's needs and preferences. Which leaves a little wiggle room for other platforms (that includes Windows 10) to try and fill in the gaps. This time around we are going to take a closer look at one the newer challengers, Ubuntu Touch, as it is embodied in the recent bq Aquaris M10 tablet. How does it fare against the bevy of Android, iOS, and even Windows tablets scattered throughout the market? And does it have what it takes to not only stand tall and proud but also to survive? Read on to find our verdict. Read more