Moscovium: Element to unlock anti-gravity craft?
Is 299 the magic number?
By the time I finished secondary school in the UK, seaborgium had become the latest element to be added to the periodic table.
A synthetic element with the symbol Sg and atomic number 106, seaborgium was first produced in 1974 when a few of its atoms were created in laboratories in the Soviet Union and the United States.
With the symbol Fr and atomic number 87, francium was the last element to have been discovered naturally in 1939 by Marguerite Perey at the Curie Institute in Paris, France. Outside the laboratory, francium is extremely rare, with trace amounts found in uranium and thorium ores, where the isotope francium-223 continually forms and decays. As little as 20g exists at any given time throughout the earth's crust.
But since that time 28 elements have so far been added to the periodic table, with tennessine (Ts, 117) the latest to join the list in 2017.
So where have these 28 additional elements come from, if not from natural chemical reactions? Well, since 1940 they have all been created through scientific research in laboratories using particle accelerators after mankind began its quest for nuclear technology, although since they were first discovered four such "synthetic" elements (plutonium, neptunium, astatine and promethium) have also been discovered in trace amounts in nature.
First synthesized in 2003 by a joint team of Russian and American scientists, moscovium (Mc, 115) is one of the more controversial synthetic elements to have materialised.
Extremely radioactive, the element was first synthesized at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Dubna, Russia, and was officially named in 2016 after the Moscow oblast in which the JINR is situated.
However, before it first came to light in 2003, it had already been spoken about more than a decade earlier as an element in a “gravity wave generator” for UFOs by American Bob Lazar, who appeared in a 1989 interview claiming to have been hired to reverse-engineer “extraterrestrial technology” obtained from the Roswell site in New Mexico in 1947.
Lazar claimed to have worked at a site called S4, which he alleged was a subsidiary installation of Area 51 located several kilometres south of the Nellis Air Force Base, and had examined an alien craft that ran on an anti-matter reactor powered by element 115.
He said the S4 facility was adjacent to Papoose Lake, located south of the main Area 51 facility at Groom Lake, and he claimed the site consisted of concealed aircraft hangars built into a mountainside.
The interview with investigative reporter George Knapp on Las Vegas TV station KLAS went out in May 1989, with Lazar speaking under the pseudonym “Dennis” and with his face hidden.
He claimed his job was to help with reverse engineering one of nine flying saucers, which he alleged were extraterrestrial in origin. In November that year Lazar appeared in a subsequent interview, unmasked and under his own name.
Lazar said propulsion of the vehicle was fuelled by a chemical element with atomic number 115, or “E115”, which at the time had not been artificially created. He said that the propulsion system relied on a stable isotope of E115, which allegedly generated a gravity wave that allowed the vehicle to fly and to evade visual detection by bending light around it.
According to Lazar the copper-orange fuel pellets used to propel the vehicle were about the size of a 50-cent piece and weighed about 223 grams.
Although Lazar claims to have earned a master's degree in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a master's degree in electronic technology from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) no records of him attending either have surfaced, while the United States Air Force has also discredited his claims of employment at a Nellis Air Force Base subsidiary.
But there is little doubt Lazar is a very accomplished scientist and there is considerable testimony supporting his claims to have studied at MIT and Caltech, with his name also appearing on a list of staff who worked at the Los Alamos National Laboratories.
However, given the sensitivity of the subject to authorities in the US, it wouldn’t be surprising if his credentials had been wiped by those wishing to keep the work secret.
Since Lazar came forward more than 30 years ago, man’s ability to synthesize new elements has come on in leaps and bounds. From 2003 several moscovium isotopes have been synthesized with about 50 atoms suspected to have been produced. But so far no “stable” isotopes of moscovium are known to have been created, with the most stable in existence being moscovium-290, which has 175 neutorns and a half-life of only 0.65 seconds.
Scientific hypotheses suggest 184 neutrons would be the magic number for a stable isotope, making moscovium-299 the target… if it has not already been discovered.
A Superheavy Element Factory opened at the JINR in 2019 dedicated to superheavy element research, with the facility enabling a tenfold increase in beam intensity. This increase in sensitivity enables the study of reactions that would otherwise have been inaccessible, with the director of the Flerov Laboratory of Nuclear Reactions Sergey Dmitriev suggesting the facility will enable the closer examination of nuclei near the limits of stability, as well as experiments aimed at the synthesis of elements 119 and 120.
The JINR has been involved in the last six elements to be added to the periodic table with the heaviest, oganesson (Og, 118) synthesized in 2002.
Since 2014 it has been collaborating with projects being undertaken by the European Organisation for Nuclear Research at the CERN Large Hadron Collider, the biggest device of its kind in the world.
Located near Meyrin in Switzerland, the CERN collider was built between 1998 and 2008 in collaboration with more than 10,000 scientists and hundreds of universities and laboratories, as well as more than 100 countries.
The collider lies in a tunnel 27 kilometres in circumference and as deep as 175 metres beneath the France-Switzerland border.
Given the vast expansion in this field of scientific research and the number of organisations involved, including the Los Alamos National Laboratory, it would seem likely that a stable isotope of moscovium is just around the corner, if not already in existence.
If this is indeed the key to propelling anti-gravity craft, claimed to be the objective of the “Die Glocke” device being worked on by Nazi scientists at the end of World War II, is the widespread availability of moscovium-299 all that is holding up disclosure of this technology? Or is there a more sinister reason for keeping it under wraps? Another American “whistleblower”, Steven Greer, thinks so!