Michael Thoennessen

News: January 19, 2019

Updated Chart-of-Isotope Animation available

An updated version of the Chart-of-Isotopes Animation is now available including all discoveries until the end of 2018.

A summary of all isotope discoveries until the end of 2015 are compiled in my book The Discovery of Isotopes published by Springer. Yearly updates are published by World Scientific (see side panel under publications).

Timeline movie
The animation of the discoveries as a function of time has been updated and includes all isotopes discovered until the middle of 2015: 2015 Timeline Movie

If you would like to receive automatic emails about new isotope discovery papers please send me an email.


NEW 2018 Ranking:

Today (maybe a little bit premature) I completed the literature search for new discoveries in the year 2018. 50 new nuclides were reported in 2018. No reassignments were made during this year.

Thus, until the end of 2018, a total of 3302 nuclides have been discovered. 3762 unique authors reported these discoveries in 1551 different papers with 916 different first authors.

Table of top 1000 (co)authors

Table of top 250 first authors

Table of top 25 labs

Table of countries

Table of top 25 journals

In cataloguing these data, an attempt was made to account for the different use of initials and name changes (due to marriage, for example). However, this might not always be correct. Authors are encouraged to check the discovery papers which were published in At. Data Nucl. Data Tables. Corrections can be sent by email and would be very welcome.

Background of the project:

In 2007 we began a project to document the discovery of all isotopes. In contrast to the discovery of a new element, the first observation of a new isotope is not as well defined.

For each isotope we wrote a brief paragraph describing the discovery, including the authors, institution, year and method of discovery. The paragraph includes a quote from the original paper and discusses any possible controversies related to the discovery.

These paragraphs are being published in a series of papers in the journal Atomic Data and Nuclear Data Tables. Links to the references for each element are listed in the table of the discovery papers.