28 August 2017

Spotlight on World-class Partner, MURR®

In our most recent blog article, Full Speed Ahead!, we stated that General Atomics (GA), University of Missouri Research Reactor (MURR®) and Nordion are well-matched to deliver a new, reliable source of Molybednum-99 (Mo-99). Today’s article shines the light on MURR to explain the value of their facility and expertise to our partnership—and millions of people around the world.

MURR and Nordion have a 20-year long-standing relationship. Furthermore, our philosophies are aligned with respect to our mission to deliver a new, reliable source of Mo-99 in support of the entire nuclear medicine community. “We take our role in meeting patient needs very seriously, and we are fortunate in Missouri to have such a well-designed reactor and an outstanding staff enabling us to accommodate this important need in the medical community,” explains Ralph Butler, MURR executive director.

(Image courtesy of University of Missouri Research Reactor (MURR®)

MURR’s proven reliability is a key factor in ensuring supply of crucial isotopes. But that’s just one of many attributes MURR brings to the partnership:

• In January 2017, MURR received a new 20-year operating license from U.S. NRC
• For 50 years, MURR has been successfully collaborating with industry
• MURR has ~200 full- and part-time scientists and staff
• MURR operates 52 weeks a year
• MURR holds a strong record of regulatory compliance (e.g., U.S. NRC, U.S. FDA)
• MURR is an expert in volume radiochemical processing and international shipping

MURR is a 10-megawatt facility, which makes it the largest nuclear research reactor in North America. And the facility is continually being modernized. Recent advancements include:

• Replacement of all graphite reflector elements
• Installation of a fire protection system
• Replacement of the primary and pool coolant system heat exchangers
• Replacement of the reactor plant make-up water tanks
• Replacement of major facility electrical distribution transformers and motor control centers
• Replacement of the cooling tower and increased capacity

Together, GA, MURR and Nordion are well-matched to deliver a new, reliable source of Mo-99. GA, known for their target and reactor system design and manufacturing, will develop the low-enriched-uranium (LEU) pellets, the target assembly, and collection systems. MURR, will irradiate the LEU pellets and perform the first stage extraction of Mo-99. And Nordion will perform the final, purification process in our cGMP facility, and ship in the same containers, using the same dedicated logistics that we have used to supply you with Mo-99 in the past.

Stay tuned for the next blog article in which we’ll shine the spotlight on GA.

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