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WikiProject iconVital articles: Level 4 / Science GA‑class
WikiProject iconCurium has been listed as a level-4 vital article in Science (Physics). If you can improve it, please do.
 GAThis article has been rated as GA-class on Wikipedia's content assessment scale.
Good articleCurium has been listed as one of the Natural sciences good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Good topic starCurium is part of the Actinides series, a good topic. This is identified as among the best series of articles produced by the Wikipedia community. If you can update or improve it, please do so.
Article milestones
April 28, 2011Good article nomineeListed
September 29, 2014Good topic candidatePromoted
Did You Know
A fact from this article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "Did you know?" column on November 20, 2010.
The text of the entry was: Did you know ... that the discovery of chemical elements curium and americium (americium compound pictured) was first announced on a radio show for children in 1945?
Current status: Good article


Article changed over to new Wikipedia:WikiProject Elements format by mav 04:07, 7 Apr 2004 (UTC). Elementbox converted 11:36, 17 July 2005 by Femto (previous revision was that of 13:45, 9 July 2005). 9 July 2005

Information Sources[edit]

Some of the text in this entry was rewritten from Los Alamos National Laboratory - Curium. Additional text was taken directly from the Elements database 20001107 (via and WordNet (r) 1.7 (via Data for the table were obtained from the sources listed on the subject page and Wikipedia:WikiProject Elements but were reformatted and converted into SI units.

Curium-247 - ideal small reactor/nuke power source?[edit]

It said to have "bare sphere" critical mass of 7 kg (Pu-239 is 10 kg (or 16 kg - Wikipedia disagees with itself on this)), yet half-life is 15 million years. Should it be mentioned? Where mass and W/kg are very critical (e.g. nuclear propulsion in space), it may make it rather useful, I think. (closest contenders: Np-236: 7 kg, 154000 years; californium-249, californium-251: 5-6 kg, <1000 years).

Pu239 is warm as small sheres and hot with larger due to its high Spontaneous Fission rate. See Demon Core, named for its dead, a 14 Kg Plutonium sphere. Plutonium easily compresses with pressure. Bombs use explosives around the Plutonium pit to compress the Plutonium to critical density. So the easier to use 10 Kg Plutonium pit is reasonable for a bomb. So 16 Kg seems about right. However do look up the inconvenience a 14Kg pit caused. TaylorLeem (talk) 21:36, 7 September 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  • Rimshaw, S.J.; Ketchen, E.E. (1969). "Curium Data Sheets". doi:10.2172/4827212. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  • "The Fission Properties of Curium Separated from Spent Nuclear Fuel" (PDF). University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
  • Nash, Kenneth; Choppin, Gregory (1997). "Separations Chemistry for Actinide Elements: Recent Developments and Historical Perspective". Separation Science and Technology. 32: 255. doi:10.1080/01496399708003198.

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Curium/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Casliber (talk · contribs) 13:23, 18 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Okay - will begin a review and jot queries below. I'll make straightforward copyedits as I go, so correct me if I inadvertently change the meaning. Casliber (talk · contribs) 13:23, 18 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Curium is a hard, dense silvery metal with relatively high for actinides melting and boiling points. - had to read this sentence twice. I think it'd be better as "Curium is a hard, dense silvery metal with a relatively high melting and boiling point for an actinide."
link or explain "ambient conditions"
ok, make sure all refs are formatted consistently - so Smith, J.; Jones, F. etc. for authors (I like to try and get as many full names as possible but that's just me :)) and completely. Will be back tomorrow.
About 20 radioisotopes and 7 nuclear isomer between - "isomers"?
Soil analysis revealed about 4,000 higher concentration of curium - 4,000 times higher?
the isotope with a halflife of millions of years, is it less radioactive then?
Fixed all the above. Sorry, I don't understand the "less radioactive" question. Materialscientist (talk) 01:10, 19 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I was wondering whether an isotope with a really long half life meant that it emitted radiation at a very slow rate (?) and was hence less dangerous (??) Nuclear energy and radioactivity were never my strong points :/ Casliber (talk · contribs) 13:48, 27 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

same here :-), but we can always use common sense: in their decay chain, isotopes emit different types of radiation, which all pose different dangers. Also, our body accumulates isotopes very differently (say, it does need iodine, no matter the isotope, but not curium). Thus lifetime alone is not an indicator. If we ignore all that, then the issue is the accumulated dose (peak intensities are usually too small to kill). Isotopes with faster decay are easier to deactivate - just leave them alone for a while. Thus generally, slower ones are considered more dangerous. Materialscientist (talk) 01:07, 28 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

D'oh! forgot about the decay chain! Casliber (talk · contribs) 01:21, 28 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Agree the fact tags will need to be addressed. I will revisit this once I see some action on the above and find some more stuff to fix. Ultimately as this is a core science article (an element), I am happy to leave this GAN open longer if we can get a better result and if I see movement along the way. Casliber (talk · contribs) 22:53, 18 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Resolved. Yes, some of it was reasonable WP:OR and the tags were rather appropriate. Materialscientist (talk) 01:10, 19 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Um, hello, everybody? This GA nomination seems to have sort of died (last post by Materialscientist 8 days ago). Lanthanum-138 (talk) 11:12, 27 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oops, sorry. I'll look over it again and update anon. Casliber (talk · contribs) 12:06, 27 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Para 2 in the Occurrence section talks about where it is found - sentence 3 (" Even higher ratio of about 18,000 was measured in loam soils") presumably needs and "An" at the beginning.
All page range refs should have periods - some currently do and some don't.
refs 55, 61, 63, 67, 76 all have initials with periods missing after them. There might be others too. (I added this as I thought this might be heading to FAC at some time)
can other info be added to refs 80, 84, 85, 86 and 87 at all?
Thanks. I've added "an" and reference details where possible. References would need an upgrade for FAC, which was not my intention. Materialscientist (talk) 01:07, 28 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Okay, I won't let a few dots hold up a GA, so I think we're over the line here.

1. Well written?:

Prose quality: (could probably be tweaked a little more but no deal-breakers left)
Manual of Style compliance:

2. Factually accurate and verifiable?:

References to sources:
Citations to reliable sources, where required:
No original research:

3. Broad in coverage?:

Major aspects:

4. Reflects a neutral point of view?:

Fair representation without bias:

5. Reasonably stable?

No edit wars, etc. (Vandalism does not count against GA):

6. Illustrated by images, when possible and appropriate?:

Images are copyright tagged, and non-free images have fair use rationales:
Images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:


Pass or Fail: - tricky as I am not an expert in the area but I think it looks pretty comprehensive etc. Anyway, pass now. Casliber (talk · contribs) 01:21, 28 April 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]


The entire article seems biased towards short lived light Curium isotopes (242, 243) and seems to ignore the much longer lived heavier isotopes like 247, 248 half lives to 10^7 years. TaylorLeem (talk) 21:13, 7 September 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm not sure it is that unbalanced. Of course, Curium#Occurrence is all about long half-lives. Could you be more specific, for example why the short-lived ones are less important -- while in RL/physics they are relevant (in my opinion). Also, could you clarify the section title 'Safety???'. -DePiep (talk) 21:57, 7 September 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Wikipedia articles on nuclear waste note that the most dangerous long term radioactive wastes are long life transuranics accumulating in original waste because non-fertile/non-fissile. TaylorLeem (talk) 01:51, 29 October 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]