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New Type of Asymmetric Fission in Proton-Rich Nuclei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • J. Elseviers
  • M. Huyse
  • P. Van Duppen
  • S. Antalic
  • A. Barzakh
  • N. Bree
  • T. E. Cocolios
  • V. F. Comas
  • J. Diriken
  • D. Fedorov
  • V. Fedosseev
  • S. Franchoo
  • J. A. Heredia
  • O. Ivanov
  • U. Koester
  • B. A. Marsh
  • K. Nishio
  • R. D. Page
  • N. Patronis
  • I. Tsekhanovich
  • P. Van den Bergh
  • J. Van De Walle
  • M. Venhart
  • S. Vermote
  • M. Veselsky
  • C. Wagemans
  • T. Ichikawa
  • A. Iwamoto
  • P. Moeller
  • A. J. Sierk


Publication details

JournalPhysical Review Letters
DatePublished - 14 Dec 2010
Issue number25
Number of pages5
Pages (from-to)1-5
Original languageEnglish


Avery exotic process of beta-delayed fission of Tl-180 is studied in detail by using resonant laser ionization with subsequent mass separation at ISOLDE (CERN). In contrast to common expectations, the fission-fragment mass distribution of the post-beta-decay daughter nucleus Hg-180 (N/Z = 1.25) is asymmetric. This asymmetry is more surprising since a mass-symmetric split of this extremely neutron-deficient nucleus would lead to two Zr-90 fragments, with magic N = 50 and semimagic Z = 40. This is a new type of asymmetric fission, not caused by large shell effects related to fragment magic proton and neutron numbers, as observed in the actinide region. The newly measured branching ratio for beta-delayed fission of Tl-180 is 3.6(7) x 10(-3)%, approximately 2 orders of magnitude larger than in an earlier study.

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