Physicist Lise Meitner, after whom Meitnerium is named. Smithsonian Institution Archives, SIA Acc. 90-105 [SIA2008-5996], Created by Briggs, C. A, "Lise Meitner (1878-1968), lecturing at Catholic University, Washington, D.C., 1946", SIA2008-5996, Retrieved on 2020-05-07

Facts about Meitnerium:

  • Meitnerium: Unknown. According to the Royal Society of Chemistry, fewer than 10 atoms of meitnerium have ever been made!
  • Fun fact about Meitnerium: Meitnerium is named after Lise Meitner, a physicist who co-discovered the process of nuclear fission. It is one of only two elements named after women scientists (the other being Curium).
  • Chemical symbol: Mt
  • Atomic number: 109

A crystal structure celebrating Meitnerium:

A crystal structure of protactinium, whose discovery is credited to Lise Meitner and Otto Hahn.

Facts about this structure:

  • Formula: Pa
  • Structure name: Pa fcc
  • Fun fact about the structure: This is not the usual structure of protactinium. This form only occurs when protactinium has been heated and then cooled from very high temperatures. This structure was solved by powder diffraction measurements after heating and cooling a protactinium bead.
  • ICSD refcode: 77862 (Find out more about the ICSD database)
  • Associated publication: L.B. Asprey, R.D. Fowler, J.D.G. Lindsay, R.W. White, Inorganic and Nuclear Chemistry Letters, 1971, 7, 977, DOI: 10.1016/0020-1650(71)80013-2

More info:

Meitnerium is a synthetic element (meaning it does not occur in nature). It was first made by scientists in West Germany in 1982. It is made by colliding iron and bismuth atoms together. The most stable isotope of meitnerium has a half-life of 8 seconds. Lise Meitner (after whom Meitnerium is named), her long-time research partner Otto Hahn, and her nephew Otto Frisch, discovered and explained nuclear fission for the first time in 1938/1939. Meitner and Frisch were not credited when Hahn won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1944.

More info about the International Year of the Periodic Table (IYPT) in crystals project:

This project (#IYPTCrystals) is part of the International Year of the Periodic Table celebration (#IYPT2019), read more about the project here. You can also follow the project on Twitter @IYPTCrystals or Instagram IYPTCrystals.

If you want to find out more about some of the terms and concepts we have a Frequently Asked Questions Page Frequently Asked Questions Page.

A visualisation showing the structure celebrating Meitnerium alongside other structures published in the same scientific article: