Nuclear physics started in 1894 with the discovery of the radioactivity of uranium by A. H. Becquerel. Marie and Pierre Curie investigated this phenomenon in detail: to their astonishment they found that raw uranium ore was far more radioactive than the refined uranium from the chemist’s store. By chemical methods, they could separate (and name) several new elements from the ore which were intensely radioactive: radium (Z=88), polonium (Z=84), a gas they called emanation (Z=86) (radon), and even a form of lead (Z= 82).
KeywordsGraphite Steam Boron Uranium Radium
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