Photonuclear Production of 67Cu and the Issues Associated

Bindu KC
Department of Physics
Idaho State University


The radionuclide Cu-67 is considered one of the most promising beta-emitting radio-isotopes for radioimmunotherapy. The available production methods using cyclotrons and high-flux nuclear reactors do not meet potential market needs. This talk will discuss the photonuclear production of Cu-67 through the reaction 68Zn(γ,p)67Cu. For commercial scale production, a high activity yield of Cu-67 is needed. Several parameters are investigated to maximize the photo-production of  Cu-67  including: electron beam parameters, design and materials of the end station (an integrated converter and target as well as cooling system), possible radiolytic reactions in the high radiation field, and finally, separating Cu-67 from the zinc target material. Computer simulations and experiments performed at the Idaho Accelerator Center (IAC) on some of the above issues will be discussed.