Elizabeth II is Queen of the United Kingdom and the other Commonwealth realms. Elizabeth was born in London as the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, she was educated at home, her father acceded to the throne on the abdication of his brother King Edward VIII in 1936, from which time she was the heir presumptive. She began to undertake public duties during the Second World War, serving in the Auxiliary Territorial Service. In 1947, she married Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, a former prince of Greece and Denmark, with whom she has four children: Charles, Prince of Wales; when her father died in February 1952, she became head of the Commonwealth and queen regnant of seven independent Commonwealth countries: the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Ceylon. She has reigned as a constitutional monarch through major political changes, such as devolution in the United Kingdom, Canadian patriation, the decolonisation of Africa. Between 1956 and 1992, the number of her realms varied as territories gained independence and realms, including South Africa and Ceylon, became republics.
Her many historic visits and meetings include a state visit to the Republic of Ireland and visits to or from five popes. Significant events have included her coronation in 1953 and the celebrations of her Silver and Diamond Jubilees in 1977, 2002, 2012 respectively. In 2017, she became the first British monarch to reach a Sapphire Jubilee, she is the longest-lived and longest-reigning British monarch as well as the world's longest-reigning queen regnant and female head of state, the oldest and longest-reigning current monarch and the longest-serving current head of state. Elizabeth has faced republican sentiments and press criticism of the royal family, in particular after the breakdown of her children's marriages, her annus horribilis in 1992 and the death in 1997 of her former daughter-in-law Diana, Princess of Wales. However, support for the monarchy has been and remains high, as does her personal popularity. Elizabeth was born at 02:40 on 21 April 1926, during the reign of her paternal grandfather, King George V.
Her father, the Duke of York, was the second son of the King. Her mother, the Duchess of York, was the youngest daughter of Scottish aristocrat the Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne, she was delivered by Caesarean section at her maternal grandfather's London house: 17 Bruton Street, Mayfair. She was baptised by the Anglican Archbishop of York, Cosmo Gordon Lang, in the private chapel of Buckingham Palace on 29 May, named Elizabeth after her mother, Alexandra after George V's mother, who had died six months earlier, Mary after her paternal grandmother. Called "Lilibet" by her close family, based on what she called herself at first, she was cherished by her grandfather George V, during his serious illness in 1929 her regular visits were credited in the popular press and by biographers with raising his spirits and aiding his recovery. Elizabeth's only sibling, Princess Margaret, was born in 1930; the two princesses were educated at home under the supervision of their mother and their governess, Marion Crawford.
Lessons concentrated on history, language and music. Crawford published a biography of Elizabeth and Margaret's childhood years entitled The Little Princesses in 1950, much to the dismay of the royal family; the book describes Elizabeth's love of horses and dogs, her orderliness, her attitude of responsibility. Others echoed such observations: Winston Churchill described Elizabeth when she was two as "a character, she has an air of authority and reflectiveness astonishing in an infant." Her cousin Margaret Rhodes described her as "a jolly little girl, but fundamentally sensible and well-behaved". During her grandfather's reign, Elizabeth was third in the line of succession to the throne, behind her uncle Edward and her father. Although her birth generated public interest, she was not expected to become queen, as Edward was still young. Many people believed he would have children of his own; when her grandfather died in 1936 and her uncle succeeded as Edward VIII, she became second-in-line to the throne, after her father.
That year, Edward abdicated, after his proposed marriage to divorced socialite Wallis Simpson provoked a constitutional crisis. Elizabeth's father became king, she became heir presumptive. If her parents had had a son, she would have lost her position as first-in-line, as her brother would have been heir apparent and above her in the line of succession. Elizabeth received private tuition in constitutional history from Henry Marten, Vice-Provost of Eton College, learned French from a succession of native-speaking governesses. A Girl Guides company, the 1st Buckingham Palace Company, was formed so she could socialise with girls her own age, she was enrolled as a Sea Ranger. In 1939, Elizabeth's parents toured the United States; as in 1927, when her parents had toured Australia and New Zealand, Elizabeth remained in Britain, since her father thought her too young to undertake public tours. Elizabeth "looked tearful", they corresponded and she and her parents made the first royal transatlantic telephone call on 18 May.
In September 1939, Britain entered the Second World War. Lord Hailsham suggested that the two princesses should be evacuated to Canada to avoid the frequent aerial bombing; this was rejected by Elizabeth's mother. I won't leave wit
George IV State Diadem
The George IV State Diadem the Diamond Diadem, is a crown, made in 1820 for King George IV. The diadem is worn by queens and queens consort in procession to coronations and State Openings of Parliament, it has been featured on stamps and currency. It can be seen in the Queen's Gallery at Buckingham Palace. George IV commissioned Rundell & Bridge to make the diadem in 1820 at a cost of £8,216; the fee included a hire charge of £800 for the diamonds but there is no evidence they were returned to the jewellers. George IV wore the diadem over his velvet cap of maintenance in the procession to his coronation at Westminster Abbey; these are £ 60,000 in 2016, respectively. The gold and silver frame, measuring 7.5 centimetres tall and 19 centimetres in diameter, is decorated with 1,333 diamonds weighing a total of 320 carats, including a four-carat yellow diamond in the front cross pattée. Along the base are two strings of pearls; the upper string had 86 pearls and the lower 94, but they were changed to 81 and 88 in 1902.
Instead of the heraldic fleurs-de-lis seen on British crowns, the diadem has four bouquets of roses and shamrocks, the floral symbols of England and Ireland alternating with four crosses pattée around the top of its base. It has been worn by every queen and queen consort from Queen Adelaide, the wife of William IV, onwards; the diadem was reset with jewels from the royal collection for Queen Victoria. Queen Elizabeth II wore the diadem in the procession to her coronation in 1953, she wears it in the procession to and from the annual State Opening of Parliament; when not in use, the diadem is on display in the Queen's Gallery at Buckingham Palace. The iconic piece of jewellery has featured in many portraits of the Queen, including one painted by Lucian Freud in 2001 and one by Raphael Maklouf in 1984 that appears on Commonwealth coinage. Arnold Machin designed an earlier portrait in the 1960s, used on coins and the Machin series of postage stamps in the UK; the diadem has featured on the banknotes of most Commonwealth realms, those of Anguilla, British Guyana, British Honduras, British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Hong Kong, Malta, North Borneo and Nyasaland, Southern Rhodesia, St Kitts and Nevis and Trinidad and Tobago.
Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom Coronation Crown of George IV Elizabeth II's jewels Media related to George IV State Diadem at Wikimedia Commons "The Diamond Diadem". Royal Collection Trust. Inventory no. 31702
Fish and chips
Fish and chips is a hot dish of English origin consisting of fried fish in batter served with chips. It is an early example of culinary fusion. Fish and chips first appeared in the UK in the 1860s. By 1910 there were more than 25,000 fish and chip shops across the UK, by the 1930s there were over 35,000. Fish and chips are now a staple takeaway meal in numerous countries in English-speaking and Commonwealth countries; the tradition in the UK of fish battered and fried in oil may have come from Jewish immigrants from Spain and Portugal. Western Sephardic Jews settling in England as early as the 16th century would have prepared fried fish in a manner similar to pescado frito, coated in flour fried in oil. Charles Dickens mentions "fried fish warehouses" in Oliver Twist, in 1845 Alexis Soyer in his first edition of A Shilling cookery for the People, gives a recipe for "Fried fish, Jewish fashion", dipped in a batter of flour and water; the exact location of the first fish and chip shop is unclear.
The earliest known shops were opened in the 1860s, in London by Joseph Malin and in Mossley, near Oldham, Lancashire, by John Lees. However, fried fish, as well as chips, had existed independently for at least fifty years, so the possibility that they had been combined at an earlier time cannot be ruled out. Fish and chips became a stock meal among the working classes in England as a consequence of the rapid development of trawl fishing in the North Sea, the development of railways which connected the ports to major industrial cities during the second half of the 19th century, so that fresh fish could be transported to the populated areas. Deep-fried chips as a dish may have first appeared in England in about the same period: the Oxford English Dictionary notes as its earliest usage of "chips" in this sense the mention in Charles Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities: "Husky chips of potatoes, fried with some reluctant drops of oil"; the modern fish-and-chip shop originated in the United Kingdom, although outlets selling fried food occurred throughout Europe.
Early fish-and-chip shops had only basic facilities. These consisted principally of a large cauldron of cooking fat, heated by a coal fire; the fish-and-chip shop evolved into a standard format, with the food served, in paper wrappings, to queuing customers, over a counter in front of the fryers. By 1910, there were more than 25,000 fish and chip shops across the country, in the 1920s there were more than 35,000 shops; as a boy Alfred Hitchcock lived above a fish and chip shop in London, the family business. According to Professor John Walton, author of Fish and Chips and the British Working Class, the British government made safeguarding supplies of fish and chips during World War I a priority: "The cabinet knew it was vital to keep families on the home front in good heart, unlike the German regime that failed to keep its people well fed". In 1928, Harry Ramsden opened his first chip shop in Guiseley, West Yorkshire. On a single day in 1952, the shop served 10,000 portions of fish and chips, earning a place in the Guinness Book of Records.
In George Orwell's The Road to Wigan Pier, which documents his experience of working class life in the north of England, the author considered fish and chips chief among the'home comforts' which acted as a panacea to the working classes. During World War II, fish and chips remained one of the few foods in the United Kingdom not subject to rationing. Prime Minister Winston Churchill referred to the combination of fish and chips as "the good companions". John Lennon enjoyed his fish and chips—a staple of the working class—smothered in ketchup. British fish and chips were served in a wrapping of old newspapers but this practice has now ceased, with plain paper, cardboard, or plastic being used instead. In the United Kingdom, the Fish Labelling Regulations 2003 and in Ireland the European Communities Regulations 2003 enact directive 2065/2001/EC, mean that "fish" must be sold with the particular commercial name or species named. In the United Kingdom the Food Standards Agency guidance excludes caterers from this.
A prominent meal in British culture, the dish became popular in wider circles in London and South East England in the middle of the 19th century: Charles Dickens mentions a "fried fish warehouse" in Oliver Twist, first published in 1838, while in the north of England a trade in deep-fried chipped potatoes developed. The first chip shop stood on the present site of Oldham's Tommyfield Market, it remains unclear when and where these two trades combined to become the fish-and-chip shop industry we know. A Jewish immigrant, Joseph Malin, opened the first recorded combined fish-and-chip shop in London in 1860 or in 1865; the concept of a fish restaurant, as opposed to take-away, was introduced by Samuel Isaacs who ran a thriving wholesale and retail fish business throughout London and the South of England in the latter part of the 19th century. Isaacs' first restaurant opened in London in 1896 serving fish and chips and butter, tea for nine pence, its popularity ensured a rapid expansion of the chain.
The restaurants were carpeted, had table service, flowers, chi
Angel of the North
The Angel of the North is a contemporary sculpture, designed by Antony Gormley, located in Gateshead and Wear, England. Completed in 1998, it is a steel sculpture of an angel, 20 metres tall, with wings measuring 54 metres across; the wings are angled 3.5 degrees forward. The angel, like much of Gormley's other work, is based on a cast of his own body, it stands on the hill of Birtley, at Low Eighton in Lamesley, overlooking the A1 and A167 roads into Tyneside, the East Coast Main Line rail route, south of the site of Team Colliery. According to Gormley, the significance of an angel was three-fold: first, to signify that beneath the site of its construction, coal miners worked for two centuries. Work began on the project in 1994, cost £800,000. Most of the project funding was provided by the National Lottery; the Angel was installed on 15 February 1998. Due to its exposed location, the sculpture was built to withstand winds of over 100 mph. Thus, foundations containing 600 tonnes of concrete anchor the sculpture to rock 70 feet below.
The sculpture was built at Hartlepool Steel Fabrications Ltd using COR-TEN weather-resistant steel. It was made in three parts—with the body weighing 100 tonnes and two wings weighing 50 tonnes each—then brought to its site by road; the components were transported in convoy—the body on a 48-wheel trailer—from their construction site in Hartlepool, up the A19 road to the installation site 28 miles away. The Angel aroused some controversy in British newspapers, at first, including a "Gateshead stop the statue" campaign, while local councillor Martin Callanan was strong in his opposition. However, it has since been considered to be a landmark for North East England and has been listed by one organisation as an "Icon of England", it has been used in film and television to represent Tyneside, as are other local landmarks such as the Tyne Bridge and the Gateshead Millennium Bridge. The sculpture is humorously known by some local people as the "Gateshead Flasher", because of its location and appearance.
Several maquettes were produced during the development stage of the project. A life-size model from which the sculpture was created was sold at auction for £2.28 million in July 2008. An additional bronze maquette used in fundraising in the 1990s, owned by Gateshead Council, was valued at £1 million on the BBC show Antiques Roadshow on 16 November 2008—the most valuable item appraised on the programme. In 2011 German fashion designer Wolfgang Joop sold his life-size maquette at an auction at Christie's in London for £3.4 million to an anonymous bidder. Another maquette was donated to the National Gallery of Australia in 2009, stands in its Sculpture Garden. Inspired by the Angel of the North, several similar projects have been proposed; the Angel of the South title has been given by some to the Willow Man, which sits to the side of the M5 in Somerset, while the White Horse at Ebbsfleet has been proposed for Ebbsfleet Valley, Kent. The sculpture Brick Man was proposed for the Holbeck area of Leeds.
Angel of the West List of statues by height Star of Caledonia Wicker man Gateshead Council's Angel of the North website Angel of the North – Antony Gormley's official website The Angel of the North at icons.org, featuring pictures of the sculpture under construction "In praise of... the Angel of the North". The Guardian. London. 30 January 2008. Archived from the original on 31 January 2008. Retrieved 7 February 2008. Photo showing a maquette in the garden of German fashion designer Wolfgang Joop's mansion'Villa Wunderkind' in Potsdam, Germany
World Wide Web
The World Wide Web known as the Web, is an information space where documents and other web resources are identified by Uniform Resource Locators, which may be interlinked by hypertext, are accessible over the Internet. The resources of the WWW may be accessed by users by a software application called a web browser. English scientist Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web in 1989, he wrote the first web browser in 1990 while employed at CERN near Switzerland. The browser was released outside CERN in 1991, first to other research institutions starting in January 1991 and to the general public in August 1991; the World Wide Web has been central to the development of the Information Age and is the primary tool billions of people use to interact on the Internet. Web resources may be any type of downloaded media, but web pages are hypertext media that have been formatted in Hypertext Markup Language; such formatting allows for embedded hyperlinks that contain URLs and permit users to navigate to other web resources.
In addition to text, web pages may contain images, video and software components that are rendered in the user's web browser as coherent pages of multimedia content. Multiple web resources with a common theme, a common domain name, or both, make up a website. Websites are stored in computers that are running a program called a web server that responds to requests made over the Internet from web browsers running on a user's computer. Website content can be provided by a publisher, or interactively where users contribute content or the content depends upon the users or their actions. Websites may be provided for a myriad of informative, commercial, governmental, or non-governmental reasons. Tim Berners-Lee's vision of a global hyperlinked information system became a possibility by the second half of the 1980s. By 1985, the global Internet began to proliferate in Europe and the Domain Name System came into being. In 1988 the first direct IP connection between Europe and North America was made and Berners-Lee began to discuss the possibility of a web-like system at CERN.
While working at CERN, Berners-Lee became frustrated with the inefficiencies and difficulties posed by finding information stored on different computers. On March 12, 1989, he submitted a memorandum, titled "Information Management: A Proposal", to the management at CERN for a system called "Mesh" that referenced ENQUIRE, a database and software project he had built in 1980, which used the term "web" and described a more elaborate information management system based on links embedded as text: "Imagine the references in this document all being associated with the network address of the thing to which they referred, so that while reading this document, you could skip to them with a click of the mouse." Such a system, he explained, could be referred to using one of the existing meanings of the word hypertext, a term that he says was coined in the 1950s. There is no reason, the proposal continues, why such hypertext links could not encompass multimedia documents including graphics and video, so that Berners-Lee goes on to use the term hypermedia.
With help from his colleague and fellow hypertext enthusiast Robert Cailliau he published a more formal proposal on 12 November 1990 to build a "Hypertext project" called "WorldWideWeb" as a "web" of "hypertext documents" to be viewed by "browsers" using a client–server architecture. At this point HTML and HTTP had been in development for about two months and the first Web server was about a month from completing its first successful test; this proposal estimated that a read-only web would be developed within three months and that it would take six months to achieve "the creation of new links and new material by readers, authorship becomes universal" as well as "the automatic notification of a reader when new material of interest to him/her has become available". While the read-only goal was met, accessible authorship of web content took longer to mature, with the wiki concept, WebDAV, Web 2.0 and RSS/Atom. The proposal was modelled after the SGML reader Dynatext by Electronic Book Technology, a spin-off from the Institute for Research in Information and Scholarship at Brown University.
The Dynatext system, licensed by CERN, was a key player in the extension of SGML ISO 8879:1986 to Hypermedia within HyTime, but it was considered too expensive and had an inappropriate licensing policy for use in the general high energy physics community, namely a fee for each document and each document alteration. A NeXT Computer was used by Berners-Lee as the world's first web server and to write the first web browser, WorldWideWeb, in 1990. By Christmas 1990, Berners-Lee had built all the tools necessary for a working Web: the first web browser and the first web server; the first web site, which described the project itself, was published on 20 December 1990. The first web page may be lost, but Paul Jones of UNC-Chapel Hill in North Carolina announced in May 2013 that Berners-Lee gave him what he says is the oldest known web page during a 1991 visit to UNC. Jones stored it on his NeXT computer. On 6 August 1991, Berners-Lee published a short summary of the World Wide Web project on the newsgroup alt.hypertext.
This date is sometimes confused with the public availability of the first web servers, which had occurred months earlier. As another example of such confusion, several news media reported that the first photo on the Web was published by Berners-Lee in 1992, an image of the CERN house band Les Horribles Cernettes taken by Silvano de Gennaro.
Loch Ness is a large, freshwater loch in the Scottish Highlands extending for 37 kilometres southwest of Inverness. Its surface is 16 metres above sea level. Loch Ness is best known for alleged sightings of the cryptozoological Loch Ness Monster known affectionately as "Nessie", it is connected at the southern end by the River Oich and a section of the Caledonian Canal to Loch Oich. At the northern end there is the Bona Narrows which opens out into Loch Dochfour, which feeds the River Ness and a further section of canal to Inverness leading to the North Sea via the Moray Firth, it is one of a series of interconnected, murky bodies of water in Scotland. Loch Ness is the second largest Scottish loch by surface area at 56 km2 after Loch Lomond, but due to its great depth, it is the largest by volume in the British Isles, its deepest point is 230 m. A 2016 survey claimed to have discovered a crevice that pushed the depth to 271 m but further research determined it to be a sonar anomaly, it contains more fresh water than all the lakes in England and Wales combined, is the largest body of water in the Great Glen, which runs from Inverness in the north to Fort William in the south.
At Drumnadrochit is the "Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition" which examines the natural history and legend of Loch Ness. Boat cruises operate from various locations on the loch shore, giving visitors the chance to look for the "monster". Urquhart Castle is located on the western shore, 2 km east of Drumnadrochit. Lighthouses are located at Fort Augustus. Loch Ness is known as the home of the Loch Ness Monster, a cryptid, reputedly a large unknown animal, it is similar to other supposed lake monsters in Scotland and elsewhere, though its description varies from one account to the next. Popular interest and belief in the animal's existence have varied since it was first brought to the world's attention in 1933. There is an RNLI lifeboat station on Loch Ness, operational since 2008, it is manned by voluntary crew with an inshore lifeboat. The following fish species are native to Loch Ness. A number of others such as perch and roach have been introduced in the Loch or Caledonian Canal with various levels of success.
Loch Ness has one island, Cherry Island, near Fort Augustus. It is an artificial island, known as a crannog, was constructed during the Iron Age. There was a second island, submerged when the water level was raised during the construction of the Caledonian Canal. Loch Ness serves as the lower storage reservoir for the Foyers pumped-storage hydroelectric scheme, the first of its kind in the United Kingdom; the turbines were used to provide power for a nearby aluminium smelting plant, but now electricity is generated and supplied to the National Grid. Another scheme, the 100 megawatt Glendoe Hydro Scheme near Fort Augustus, began generation in June 2009, it was out of service between 2009 and 2012 for repair of the tunnels connecting the reservoir to the turbines. Loch Ness lies along the Great Glen Fault, which forms a line of weakness in the rocks, excavated by glacial erosion, forming the Great Glen and the basins of Loch Lochy, Loch Oich and Loch Ness. John Cobb died in an attempt at the water speed record when his boat Crusader struck an unexplained wake on the surface of the loch in 1952.
His accident was recorded by the BBC reporters on site at the time. Nearby, there is a memorial. On 31 August 1974, David Scott Munro, of Ross-shire Caberfeidh Water Ski Club, became the first person in the world to water ski the length of Loch Ness. From Lochend to Fort Augustus and back, he covered the 77 km in 77 minutes at an average speed of 60 kilometres per hour. In July 1966, Brenda Sherratt became the first person to swim the length of the loch, it took 27 minutes. Media related to Loch Ness at Wikimedia Commons Loch Ness travel guide from Wikivoyage Loch Ness information Website, Editor Tony Harmsworth Loch Ness Project Research Site, Editor Adrian Shine Loch Ness Investigation website, Editor Dick Raynor Loch Ness Pictures Loch Ness Photographs Virtual Tour of Loch Ness and surrounding area Nessieland at Loch Ness
Nickel is a chemical element with symbol Ni and atomic number 28. It is a silvery-white lustrous metal with a slight golden tinge. Nickel is hard and ductile. Pure nickel, powdered to maximize the reactive surface area, shows a significant chemical activity, but larger pieces are slow to react with air under standard conditions because an oxide layer forms on the surface and prevents further corrosion. So, pure native nickel is found in Earth's crust only in tiny amounts in ultramafic rocks, in the interiors of larger nickel–iron meteorites that were not exposed to oxygen when outside Earth's atmosphere. Meteoric nickel is found in combination with iron, a reflection of the origin of those elements as major end products of supernova nucleosynthesis. An iron–nickel mixture is thought to compose Earth's outer and inner cores. Use of nickel has been traced as far back as 3500 BCE. Nickel was first isolated and classified as a chemical element in 1751 by Axel Fredrik Cronstedt, who mistook the ore for a copper mineral, in the cobalt mines of Los, Hälsingland, Sweden.
The element's name comes from a mischievous sprite of German miner mythology, who personified the fact that copper-nickel ores resisted refinement into copper. An economically important source of nickel is the iron ore limonite, which contains 1–2% nickel. Nickel's other important ore minerals include pentlandite and a mixture of Ni-rich natural silicates known as garnierite. Major production sites include the Sudbury region in Canada, New Caledonia in the Pacific, Norilsk in Russia. Nickel is oxidized by air at room temperature and is considered corrosion-resistant, it has been used for plating iron and brass, coating chemistry equipment, manufacturing certain alloys that retain a high silvery polish, such as German silver. About 9% of world nickel production is still used for corrosion-resistant nickel plating. Nickel-plated objects sometimes provoke nickel allergy. Nickel has been used in coins, though its rising price has led to some replacement with cheaper metals in recent years. Nickel is one of four elements that are ferromagnetic at room temperature.
Alnico permanent magnets based on nickel are of intermediate strength between iron-based permanent magnets and rare-earth magnets. The metal is valuable in modern times chiefly in alloys. A further 10% is used for nickel-based and copper-based alloys, 7% for alloy steels, 3% in foundries, 9% in plating and 4% in other applications, including the fast-growing battery sector; as a compound, nickel has a number of niche chemical manufacturing uses, such as a catalyst for hydrogenation, cathodes for batteries and metal surface treatments. Nickel is an essential nutrient for some microorganisms and plants that have enzymes with nickel as an active site. Nickel is a silvery-white metal with a slight golden tinge, it is one of only four elements that are magnetic at or near room temperature, the others being iron and gadolinium. Its Curie temperature is 355 °C; the unit cell of nickel is a face-centered cube with the lattice parameter of 0.352 nm, giving an atomic radius of 0.124 nm. This crystal structure is stable to pressures of at least 70 GPa.
Nickel belongs to the transition metals. It is hard and ductile, has a high for transition metals electrical and thermal conductivity; the high compressive strength of 34 GPa, predicted for ideal crystals, is never obtained in the real bulk material due to the formation and movement of dislocations. The nickel atom has two electron configurations, 3d8 4s2 and 3d9 4s1, which are close in energy – the symbol refers to the argon-like core structure. There is some disagreement. Chemistry textbooks quote the electron configuration of nickel as 4s2 3d8, which can be written 3d8 4s2; this configuration agrees with the Madelung energy ordering rule, which predicts that 4s is filled before 3d. It is supported by the experimental fact that the lowest energy state of the nickel atom is a 3d8 4s2 energy level the 3d8 4s2 3F, J = 4 level. However, each of these two configurations splits into several energy levels due to fine structure, the two sets of energy levels overlap; the average energy of states with configuration 3d9 4s1 is lower than the average energy of states with configuration 3d8 4s2.
For this reason, the research literature on atomic calculations quotes the ground state configuration of nickel as 3d9 4s1. The isotopes of nickel range in atomic weight from 48 u to 78 u. Occurring nickel is composed of five stable isotopes. Isotopes heavier than 62Ni cannot be formed by nuclear fusion without losing energy. Nickel-62 has the highest mean nuclear binding energy per nucleon of any nuclide, at 8.7946 MeV/nucleon. Its binding energy is greater than both 56Fe and 58Fe, more abundant elements incorrectly cited as having the most tightly-bound nuclides. Although this would seem to predict nickel-62 as the most abundant heavy element in the universe, the high rate of photodisintegration of nickel in stellar interiors causes iron to be by far the most abundant. Stable isotope nickel-60 is the daughter product of the extinct radionuclide 60Fe, whi