The ability to concentrate the isotope Ra-228 from natural thorium (Th-232). This technology is being applied to the fabrication of neutron irradiation targets to easily produce larger quantities of Th-229, a parent of the medically attractive Ac-225 and Bi-213.
- A small quantity ofAc225 is produced from legacy Th229, which itself is the decay product of legacy U233
- Ac225 is also being produced in accelerators by utility ofU232 or Ra226 targets. These production methods have major therapeutic hurdles as a result of the coproduction of Ac227
- The utility of neutron irradiation of Ra226 to produce Th229as a precursor to Ac225 is being examined as well. This method is inefficient due to the triple neutron capture required to produce Th229. Furthermore, the process is complicated by the coproduction of many other isotopes of thorium and actinium.
- Maintains Ac225 nuclidic purity
- Single neutron capture required to produce theAc225 precursor Th229.
- Ra228 neutron capture cross-section is relatively high (relative to Ra226)
- Easily scalable
There is an abundance of Th229 source material above ground and available for purchase. A supplier has been identified and has committed to provide sample material.