Nobelium Element Facts

Nobelium Radioactive

Nobelium was named after Alfred Nobel, creator of the Nobel Prize.


Data Zone

Classification: Nobelium is an actinide metal
Atomic weight: (259), no stable isotopes
State: solid
Melting point:
Boiling point:
Electrons: 102
Protons: 102
Neutrons in most abundant isotope: 157
Electron shells: 2,8,18,32,32,8,2
Electron configuration: [Rn] 5f14 7s2
Density @ 20oC:
Show more, including: Heats, Energies, Oxidation, Reactions, Compounds, Radii, Conductivities
Atomic volume:
Specific heat capacity
Heat of fusion
Heat of atomization -
Heat of vaporization
1st ionization energy 642 kJ mol-1
2nd ionization energy
3rd ionization energy
Electron affinity
Minimum oxidation number 0
Min. common oxidation no. 0
Maximum oxidation number 3
Max. common oxidation no. 3
Electronegativity (Pauling Scale) 1.3
Polarizability volume 17.5 Å3
Reaction with air
Reaction with 15 M HNO3
Reaction with 6 M HCl
Reaction with 6 M NaOH
Atomic radius
Ionic radius (1+ ion)
Ionic radius (2+ ion) 105 pm
Ionic radius (3+ ion)
Ionic radius (1- ion)
Ionic radius (2- ion)
Ionic radius (3- ion)
Thermal conductivity
Electrical conductivity
Freezing/Melting point:

Discovery of Nobelium

Research scientists at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna, Russia synthesized nobelium for the first time in 1966.

The element was given its name in honor of Alfred Nobel.

‘Nobelium’ had actually been proposed as the element 102′s name in 1957, by scientists from the Nobel Institute of Physics in Sweden who believed they had produced it. Further investigations ruled out the possibility they had made nobelium.

A stronger claim to have made nobelium was made in 1958 by scientists at the University of California, Berkeley.

After reviewing all claims IUPAC (International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) ruled that the discovery was most likely to have been made in Dubna in 1966.

Transuranium elements discovery and experiments. 1963 chemistry educational documentary narrated by Glenn Seaborg, Stanley Thompson and Albert Ghiorso.


Argonne National Laboratory: Analysis of gamma rays generated in the Gammasphere established that the nuclei in nobelium atoms are not shaped like spheres, but are actually elongated like footballs. The 10-foot-tall, 14-ton Gammasphere has 110 germanium detectors cooled with liquid nitrogen.

Appearance and Characteristics

Harmful effects:

Nobelium is harmful due to its radioactivity.


Nobelium is a synthetic, highly radioactive metal that has only been produced in miniscule amounts.

Nobelium is normally a divalent ion in aqueous solution. (1)

Uses of Nobelium

Nobelium is of scientific research interest only.

Abundance and Isotopes

Abundance earth’s crust: nil

Abundance solar system: -

Cost, pure: $ per g

Cost, bulk: per 100g

Source: Nobelium is a synthetic element and is not found naturally. Nobelium is created by nuclear bombardment, and has only been produced in miniscule amounts. Nobelium can be produced by irradiating a californium-249 target with carbon-12 ions. (1b)

Isotopes: Nobelium has 12 isotopes whose half-lives are known, with mass numbers 250 to 262. Nobelium has no naturally occurring isotopes. Its longest lived isotopes are 259No with a half-life of 51.5 minutes, 255No, with a half-life of 31.8 minutes and 253No with a half-life of 1.7 minutes.


1. Robert J. Silva, The Chemistry of the Actinide and Transactinide Elements., Springer., Vol 3.13, p1637.
1a. Robert J. Silva, The Chemistry of the Actinide and Transactinide Elements., Springer., Vol 3.13, p1639.
1b. Robert J. Silva, The Chemistry of the Actinide and Transactinide Elements., Springer., Vol 3.13, p1638.
2. Gammasphere.

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