NorthStar Medical Radioisotopes has finished construction and equipment installation at its Beloit production facility, federal officials announced.
In a release yesterday, the National Nuclear Security Administration said this facility will “significantly increase domestic production capability” for a widely used medical isotope called molybdenum-99 once it’s approved by regulators. Mo-99 is used to produce technetium-99m, which is used in more than 40,000 diagnostic procedures in the United States every day, and is considered a staple for nuclear medicine.
The agency, which has provided $109 million in cost-shared cooperative agreements to NorthStar since 2012, aims to support U.S. production of Mo-99 without the need for highly enriched uranium. Its goal is to “reduce the risk of nuclear proliferation and terrorism,” as this form of uranium has historically been produced for military applications among other uses.