The production of 103Pd and 109Cd using proton irradiated tandem natAg/natAg targets

by Claire Ineza

Institution: University of South Africa
Year: 2015
Keywords: 103Pd; 109Cd; tandem natAg/natAg target; ion exchange chromatography; Chelex-100; AG1-X10
Record ID: 1426250
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/10500/18501


103Pd is an important therapeutic radionuclide and has recently found great interest due to its higher radiobiologic effect. 109Cd decays by electron capture and is generally used as calibration sources in industrial and medical fields. A new method for the production of 103Pd and 109Cd using the 66 MeV proton beam of iThemba LABS on a tandem natural silver target (Ag/Ag) has been developed. The tandem targets (each target with a mass of 9 g and a thickness of 3 mm) were placed in the high energy slot (62.515 MeV - 40.173 MeV) and low energy slot (38.652 MeV – 0 MeV) to produce the bulk 103Pd and 109Cd, respectively. The radiochemical separation of the Pd radionuclides (103Pd, 100Pd) and the co-produced Rh radioisotopes (mainly 101Rh and 100Rh which are produced from decay of their Pd parents) from the bulk natAg was achieved using a Chelex chelating resin column. In the preliminary studies, different size columns (3 cm x 1 cm, 11 cm x 1 cm, 13 cm x 1 cm and 16 cm x 1.5 cm) were investigated to determine the optimal column conditions for the separation. It was determined that the optimal conditions for the chemical separation was with a 13 cm x 1 cm resin column with the elution of Rh and Ag radionuclides carried out with 1 M HNO3 and the elution of Pd radionuclides with 10 M HCl. No Ag or Rh impurities were detected in the final product and the average recovery of Pd was > 96 %. This work was repeated using a ―hot‖ irradiated Ag target and the chemical processing was done in a hot cell using the same resin column conditions. The recovery of the high purity 103Pd from the irradiated natAg target was found to be > 95 %. The radiochemical separation of 109Cd from the bulk natAg target was done in two parts. In the first part, the precipitation method was used to reduce the silver into a metallic form using 30 g of Cu turnings. The resulting 109Cd filtrate was loaded onto a AG-X10 anion exchange resin column (6 cm x 1 cm). For the optimal chemical separation, the elution of Ag and Cu(II) was carried out with 2 M HCl containing H2O2 and the elution of 109Cd was accomplished with 1 M HNO3. The recovery yield of 109Cd was > 99 %.