Rosatom To Work on Cancer-Fighting Cobalt

UrBC, Yekaterinburg, August 21, 2017. Rosatom State Corporation intends to focus on making Cobalt 60, a radioactive isotope used in cancer treatment, at Sverdlovsk Region’s Beloyarskaya Nuclear Power Station, the company press service reports.

The plan is to start producing the isotope using the power station’s Power Generating Unit 4 BH 800 reactor.

The radioactive cobalt variety (Co 60) enjoys stable demand on both the national and the international markets. The isotope is used for food sterilization and disinfection of medical appliances and materials as well as a grain and vegetable fertilizer and industrial waste sanitizer and also in gamma-ray testing.

Co 60 is also vital to atomedics. The isotope is present in cobalt guns used for X-ray therapy and in gamma knives used for stereotactic radiosurgery of brain tumors. Co 60 can only be obtained artificially through placing the so-called irradiation devices filled with the original raw stuff (Co 59) into the neutron flux of a nuclear reactor or a neutron generator.

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