Elements that complete seventh row of periodic table will be named nihonium, moscovium, tennessine and oganesson

The official names for elements 113, 115, 117 and 118 are nihonium, moscovium, tennessine and oganesson respectively, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (Iupac) has announced.

The news comes after a five month consultation process where the public were called to express their opinions on the four proposed names and their corresponding symbols. The symbols for the new elements will be Nh for nihonium, Mc for moscovium, Ts for tennessine and Og for oganesson.

Iupac confirmed the discovery of four new synthetic elements back in January 2016. A team led by Kosuke Morita at Riken in Japan was credited with the discovery of nihonium. The name originates from one of two words in Japanese for Japan, ‘Nihon’, which means ‘the land of rising sun’.

Read our in depth report on the discoveries of the four new elements where we talk to key players behind the synthesis of these superheavy elements, including Yuri Oganessian and the team at Riken.

Moscovium and tennessine were attributed to a team divided between the Lawrence Livermore and Oak Ridge National Laboratories in the US and the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Russia. Both elements were named in tribute to regions that carry out superheavy element research, Moscow and Tennessee.

The Lawrence Livermore National Lab and their Russian counterparts also took credit for oganesson, named after the famed nuclear scientist Yuri Oganessian.

Iupac invited the teams to propose names for the new elements, confirming the suggested names in June this year. According to the Iupac guidelines, an element can only be named after a mythological concept or character, a mineral, a place or geographical region, an elemental property or a scientist.

The confirmed names have now been published in the Iupac journal, Pure and Applied Chemistry.