If the periodic table were an exclusive club, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry would be the overgrown doorman holding the clipboard. To extend this awkward analogy, over the summer, two new names were added onto the bouncer’s list: element 114 and element 116. These two additions were discovered ten years ago, and after a lengthy review by the IUPAC, they have finally been allowed into the periodic table. Now the scientists who discovered the elements by smashing and decaying calcium ions get to name them.
Pending approval, the BBC reports element 114 will be called Flerovium (Fl) and element 116 will take the name Livermorium (Lv). The former’s moniker honors the physicist Georgiy Flerov and the latter’s comes from Livermore National Laboratory, the lab where the two elements were discovered.
You uncover two highly radioactive elements previously unfathomed by the human mind and you name them “Flerovium” and “Livermorium?”
We’re sorry, but that’s just not good enough.
We contacted fake PR firm Synergistic Realities 4 U, Ltd., and they sent us some name ideas via their iPads:
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on December 4, 2011