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Cross section of radioisotope packaging, 1958 - 1998
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Object statement
Cross section of radioisotope packaging, lead / plastic / foam / vermiculite / cardboard / glass, made by Australian Radioisotopes, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1958-1998
This object is an example of how radioactive isotopes are safely packaged and transported for medical use.

ANSTO has developed a new range of easier to use packaging that reduces potential radiation doses to handlers of nuclear medicines.

New lead pots have been produced in an easily handled, rounded triangular form. The enclosed vial stands above the surface of the opened pot, permitting faster removal and replacement, reducing exposure to its radioactive contents. In addition lead pots have also been encased in heavy-duty plastic, instead of the older style painted containers which can ship, exposing the user to bare lead.

Plastic pails have replaced cartons in which the pots were sealed and transported. Each has a tamper-evident seal, which must be broken to allow its lid to be removed. Custom cut foam blocks in which the lead pot is placed have replaced vermiculite that was used as packaging. The new packaging materials are all fully recyclable.

The design of this older style packaging represents a stage in the technology of transporting and delivering radioisotopes to medical users.

Written by Erika Dicker
Assistant Curator, 2007.
The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) distribute and manufacture these containers under the Australian Radioisotopes tradename.

The lead in the packaging shields a user from the radiation emitted by the isotope. Lead is a particularly effective radiation shield because lead has a high atomic number of 82 and its many electrons absorb the gamma and x rays. Lead is also a commonly occurring element in a predominance of stable isotopes.

 This text content licensed under CC BY-NC.

Description
Cross section of radioisotope packaging, lead / plastic / foam / vermiculite / cardboard / glass, made by Australian Radioisotopes, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1958-1998

A cross section of a lead-lined container used in the transportation of radioactive isotopes. There is a clear plastic cover secured to the packaging to allow viewing. The glass vial containing the radioactive isotope (not active) is cushioned by a layer of vermiculite and then a layer of packing foam. Two layers of thin lead shielding surround the vial and vermiculite. On the outside of the packaging are several stickers which includes a blue and white sticker that reads 'OVERNIGHT / MEL'.

Made: Australian Radiosotopes; Sydney, New South Wales, Australia; 1958 - 1998
2007/62/8
Production date
1958 - 1998
Height
320 mm
Width
315 mm
Depth
155 mm

 This text content licensed under CC BY-SA.
Acquisition credit line
Gift of Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), 2007
Subjects
+ Transport technology
Short persistent URL
Concise link back to this object: http://from.ph/366442
Cite this object in Wikipedia
Copy and paste this wiki-markup:

{{cite web |url=http://from.ph/366442 |title=Cross section of radioisotope packaging |author=Powerhouse Museum |accessdate=24 April 2014 |publisher=Powerhouse Museum, Australia}}


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