, Volume 274, Issue 1, pp 45-52
Date: 10 Oct 2008

A comparative study on the separation of radiozirconium via ion-exchange and solvent extraction techniques, with particular reference to the production of 88Zr and 89Zr in proton induced reactions on yttrium

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The radiochemical separation of no-carrier-added zirconium from proton irradiated yttrium was studied by two techniques, namely, ion-exchange chromatography using Dowex 50W-X8 and Dowex 21K resins, and solvent extraction using HDEHP and TPPO, the latter reagent being employed for the first time for separation of radiozirconium from bulk of yttrium. Out of all those techniques, the solvent extraction using TPPO was found to be the best: the separation yield of radiozirconium was >97%, the time of separation was short, the contamination from the long-lived 88Y activity was low (10−4%) and the final product was obtained in the form of oxalate. The production of 89Zr and 88Zr of high radionuclidic and chemical purity via irradiation of yttrium targets with protons of energies 12 and 20 MeV, respectively, is described. The experimental yields of the two radionuclides were found to be 28 MBq/μA·h and 1.63 MBq/μA·h, respectively. Each value corresponds to about 80% of the respective theoretical yield.