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     95    

95 Am Americium

Actinoid, mass: 243 u, no stable and no natural isotopes.

A small disc of americium 241. Photo: Bionerd, released under CC BY 3.0 license.

Americium

Americium is the first synthetic element, from here onwards all elements have to be produced in laboratories. These are very radioactive. The most stable isotope of americium, 243Am, has a half-life of just under 7400 years. Due to its strong alpha radiation, americium is very dangerous. In some countries americium 241 (432 years half-life) is used in tiny amounts in smoke detectors for ionizing air. Americium emerges in small amounts in nuclear reactors from plutonium and mostly decays to neptunium.


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