Iron-54 and Its Atomic Structure

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iron-54 is a stable (non-radioactive) isotope of iron. It is found in minerals such as hematite and pyrite, and also in the human body in small amounts. In humans, it is involved in erythrocyte iron uptake and metabolism. It is used as a tracer to investigate metabolic iron control mechanisms and energy expenditure. It is also useful in developing successful interventions for anemia, and establishing conditions for iron absorption and excretion.

In the last decade, significant progress has been made in understanding the atomic structure of the 4th IoI of iron (Iron-56Fe) and the 5th IoI of chromium (Chromium-59Fe). This work has allowed for the precise isotopic abundance determinations in erythrocytes following oral loading with 54Fe, where a relative accuracy of 0.5% and an absolute accuracy of 0.03% has been achieved. In addition, the experimental excitation energies for the 54Fe and 59Fe states have been compared to theory, and this information is being utilized in the calculation of state-by-state transition strengths.

Fig. 39 shows high energy resolution (3He,t) spectra for the inner shell nuclei 42Ca, 46Ti, 50Cr and 54Fe with angular distributions fitted to a G-mode (GT) model and level structures derived from the NN and NN+ion experiments. The peaks of the GT spectra all have energies above 10 keV, indicating strongly populated states.

This data is included in Supplement A to Volume 22 ‘Nuclei with Z = 1 – 54’ of the Landolt-Bornstein Nuclear Binding Energies and Atomic Masses, and provides atomic masses, mass excesses, nuclear binding energies, neutron separation energies, Q-values and nucleon residual interaction parameters for atomic nuclei with a mass number up to 54.

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