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...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!