Science: Isotope Bargains

If people lived on radioactive isotopes, the cost of living would be no source of worry. Last week the Atomic Energy Commission was offering cesium 137 for $1 to $2 per curie* (according to amount) instead of the former $14. Cerium 144 has dropped from $1,000 to $1 to $2. Other radioisotopes are marked down in proportion.

All these materials are byproducts of plutonium manufacture, and their sudden drop in price is due to a big new plant that AEC has built in Oak Ridge, Tenn. to purify them. Some of the market possibilities: atomic batteries, radiation sterilization of surgical supplies, large-scale...

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