No new radioactive source found in west Delhi scrap market

Last Updated: Saturday, April 17, 2010 - 12:13

New Delhi: Nuclear experts have scanned hundreds of shops in a west Delhi scrap market but have not found any new radioactive source, the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB) said on Saturday.

Eleven sources of radiation were detected in the Mayapuri scrap market in the recent days where Cobalt-60 was recovered, injuring 11 persons including three scrap dealers.

However, scientists were yet to pinpoint whether the origin of radioactive material was from domestic or imported scrap.

The radioactive sources recovered from Mayapuri were in the form of Cobalt-60 pins which experts have been saying are not produced domestically.

A senior AERB official said the radioactive material recovered from Mayapuri is being examined in a "remotely handled facility" at the Narora Atomic Power Station in
western Uttar Pradesh.

The official said they were also planning to conduct a thorough scanning of the market before declaring it a safe zone.

"We have already scanned all the shops in the market. It is somewhere between 600 and 800," another official said.

Cobalt-60 is a radioactive isotope of cobalt, which is a hard, lustrous, grey metal. It is used in cancer therapy machines and other medical equipment.

Cobalt-based colours and pigments have been used since ancient times for jewellery and paints, and miners have long used the name kobold ore for some minerals.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, April 17, 2010 - 12:13

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