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Fusion Science and Technology
Researchers report fastest purification of astatine-211 needed for targeted cancer therapy
Astatine-211 recovery from bismuth metal using a chromatography system. Unlike bismuth, astatine-211 forms chemical bonds with ketones.
In a recent study, Texas A&M University researchers have described a new process to purify astatine-211, a promising radioactive isotope for targeted cancer treatment. Unlike other elaborate purification methods, their technique can extract astatine-211 from bismuth in minutes rather than hours, which can greatly reduce the time between production and delivery to the patient.
“Astatine-211 is currently under evaluation as a cancer therapeutic in clinical trials. But the problem is that the supply chain for this element is very limited because only a few places worldwide can make it,” said Jonathan Burns, research scientist in the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station’s Nuclear Engineering and Science Center. “Texas A&M University is one of a handful of places in the world that can make astatine-211, and we have delineated a rapid astatine-211 separation process that increases the usable quantity of this isotope for research and therapeutic purposes.”
The researchers added that this separation method will bring Texas A&M one step closer to being able to provide astatine-211 for distribution through the Department of Energy’s Isotope Program’s National Isotope Development Center as part of the University Isotope Network.
Details on the chemical reaction to purify astatine-211 are in the journal Separation and Purification Technology.
Kunioki Mima, T. Takeda, FIREX Project Group
Fusion Science and Technology | Volume 49 | Number 3 | April 2006 | Pages 358-366
Technical Paper | Fast Ignition | dx.doi.org/10.13182/FST06-A1154
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
This paper introduces the next generation of fast ignition research facilities now under construction and describes in detail the Japanese project Fast Ignition Realization Experiment (FIREX-I) and its proposed follow-up, FIREX-II. Both the facilities and their scientific objectives are presented. FIREX-I and the other two facilities described in subsequent papers - OMEGA EP at the University of Rochester and the Z-Petawatt at Sandia National Laboratories - will conduct proof-of-principle experiments for the fast ignitor concept. The facilities consist of two components: a long-pulse ( > ns) driver capable of compressing and assembling the fusion fuel and a separate petawatt-class laser for heating. For the FIREX project, the present status of the construction of the 10-kJ-level, high-energy petawatt Laser for Fusion Experiment is reported, and the theoretical basis for high-density plasma heating with an ~10-kJ, 10-ps petawatt laser is discussed to show how this heating pulse is predicted to achieve the plasma parameters required for the fast ignition. The required petawatt spot size, the tolerable carbon fraction in the proposed D-T-loaded foam cryogenic target, appropriate heating laser pulse shape, and the required electron stopping range are explored. The theoretical analysis includes the use of Fokker-Planck simulation to describe the heating of the dense plasma by relativistic electrons created in the petawatt laser-plasma interactions. This modeling indicates that if 30% of the 10-kJ petawatt laser energy is coupled by relativistic electrons into D-T plasmas compressed to 100 to 200 g/cm3, the plasmas will be subsequently heated to 5 keV and fusion gains, defined as fusion energy produced divided by the total incident (compression and heating) laser energy, as high as 0.1 can result.