[ RadSafe ] chemical form of industrial irradiation sources

Doug Aitken jdaitken at sugar-land.oilfield.slb.com
Mon Jun 30 09:41:26 CDT 2008

Peter: I cannot reply regarding the types of sources you mention. However,
all Cs137 sources we use for sub-surface measurements in oil wells are of
Cesium chloride contained in an insoluble, ceramic matrix,
triple-encapsulated in MP-35 alloy. 

Some very old Cs137 sources had the cesium chloride encapsulated in glass
microspheres (a 3-m process, I believe). However, the danger of these
microspheres being broken (for instance, in a downhole incident where the
steel encapsulation was breached) and the (soluble) cesium chloride released
caused the US government to ban there use in downhole applications.


-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl [mailto:radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl] On Behalf
Of Peter Bossew
Sent: Monday, June 30, 2008 5:12 AM
To: radsafe at radlab.nl
Cc: Marc De Cort
Subject: [ RadSafe ] chemical form of industrial irradiation sources

Dear listers:

Does anybody know in which chemical compound gamma irradiation sources 
used for material testing, medical use or food irradiation and the like, 
are usually delivered ? I am particularly interested in 137Cs, 60Co and 
192Ir in this context.
Anything known about solubility in water or eventual reactions with air ?
Are such sources being used in ceramic compounds ?

As far as I know the Cs source involved in the Goiânia accident was CsCl 
as powder.

Thanks for hints.


Peter Bossew 

European Commission (EC) 
Joint Research Centre (JRC) 
Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) 

TP 441, Via Fermi 1 
21020 Ispra (VA) 
Tel. +39 0332 78 9109 
Fax. +39 0332 78 5466 
Email: peter.bossew at jrc.it 

WWW: http://rem.jrc.cec.eu.int 
"The views expressed are purely those of the writer and may not in any
circumstances be regarded as stating an official position of the European

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