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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.
W. A. Bongers, A. P. H. Goede, E. Westerhof, J. W. Oosterbeek, N. J. Doelman, F. C. Schüller, M. R. De Baar, W. Kasparek, W. Wubie, D. Wagner, J. Stober, TEXTOR Team
Fusion Science and Technology | Volume 55 | Number 2 | February 2009 | Pages 188-203
Technical Paper | Electron Cyclotron Emission and Electron Cyclotron Resonance Heating | dx.doi.org/10.13182/FST09-A4071
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
Neoclassical tearing modes (NTMs) deteriorate high-pressure tokamak plasma confinement and can be suppressed by electron cyclotron current drive (ECCD). In order to obtain efficient suppression, the ECCD power needs to be deposited at the center of an NTM magnetic island. To enhance efficiency, this power also needs to be synchronized in phase with the rotation of the island. The problem is that of real-time detection and precise localization of the island(s) in order to provide the feedback signal required to control the ECCD power deposition area with an accuracy of 1 to 2 cm. Existing schemes based on mode location, equilibrium reconstruction, and plasma profile measurements are limited in positional and temporal accuracy and moreover will become very complex when applied to ITER. To overcome these limitations, it is proposed to provide the feedback signal from electron cyclotron emission (ECE) measurements taken along the identical line of sight as traced by the incident ECCD millimeter-wave beam but in reverse direction. Experiments on TEXTOR have demonstrated a proof of principle. These measurements motivate the further development and the implementation of such an ECCD-aligned ECE system for NTM control in larger fusion machines. Possible implementation of such a system on ASDEX-Upgrade, based on waveguides equipped with a fast directional switch, is presented in this paper. Possible further development for ITER is also discussed.