The Search for the Isotopes of Hydrogen and Helium of Mass 3


AFTER the discovery by Urey of the isotope of hydrogen of mass 2 (deuterium) and its concentration by electrolysis, it was natural to examine whether any other stable isotopes of hydrogen, and particularly 3H (triterium, symbol T), are present in ordinary hydrogen. In this article an account will be given of the chequered history of the many investigations to throw light on this question, and incidentally also of attempts made to detect the presence of the helium isotope of mass 3, which is believed to be produced in certain transmutations.


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Rutherford, L. The Search for the Isotopes of Hydrogen and Helium of Mass 3. Nature 140, 303–305 (1937).

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