Canadian Manufacturing

Nordion begins distribution of Cobalt-60 to medical facilities

The material is used in gamma irradiation to sterilize surgical gloves, syringes and COVID-19 test kits used by front-line medical professionals

April 16, 2020  by CM Staff

TIVERTON, Ont. — Nordion is processing and shipping the latest harvest of the isotope Cobalt-60 from Bruce Power’s Unit 6 reactor for use in medical facilities.

It’s used in gamma irradiation to sterilize surgical gloves, syringes and COVID-19 test kits used by front-line medical professionals to treat patients.

Nordion is a Sotera Health company with Canadian offices in Ottawa and Laval, Que., that is supplier of medical gamma technologies. Bruce Power is a neclear power company based in Ontario’s Bruce County.

Most of the world’s Cobalt-60 comes from Ontario’s nuclear facilities, operated by Bruce Power and Ontario Power Generation (OPG), and is processed, then distributed around the world by Nordion.

With the high demand for single-use medical equipment during the current COVID crisis, Bruce Power said the need for irradiation has increased. Other sterilization methods take up to seven days before products are available for use. Gamma irradiation technology can process such materials within a day.


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