Plutonium, with the chemical symbol Pu and atomic number 94, is a fascinating and artificially produced chemical element. It was first discovered in 1940 by American scientists Glenn T. Seaborg, Arthur Wahl, and Joseph W. Kennedy. Seaborg, a native-born American of Swedish descent, played a crucial role in the discovery of several transuranic elements.

The name "Plutonium" is derived from the planet Pluto and follows the tradition of naming new elements after celestial bodies. Plutonium is very rare on Earth and is primarily produced in nuclear reactors or through the decay of uranium.

Plutonium has both fascinating and controversial applications. It is used as fuel in nuclear reactors and played a crucial role in the development of atomic weapons. Due to its radioactive nature and potentially hazardous properties, handling plutonium is extremely challenging. The key plutonium isotopes are Plutonium-239 and Plutonium-240. Plutonium-239 has a half-life of about 24,110 years, while Plutonium-240 has a half-life of approximately 6,560 years.

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