2008 Workshop on The Nation’s Needs for Isotopes: Present and Future

August 5-7, 2008

Hilton Hotel, Rockville, MD
Sponsored by the Department of Energy
Office of Science for Nuclear Physics and Office of Nuclear Energy

Plenary Agenda | Agenda/Presentations | Working Group Participant List | Workshop Poster List |


Working Group Summaries:

Stable and Enriched Isotopes | Radioisotopes for Research and Development | Radioisotopes for Applications- Table  

Working Group Presentations       |     Workshop Report



For over 50 years the DOE and its predecessors have been at the forefront of the development and production of stable and radioactive isotope products that are used worldwide.

Hundreds of applications in medicine, industry, national security and research depend on isotopes as vital components. The Department of Energy’s FY 2009 Congressional Budget Request proposes to transfer the DOE Isotope Program from the Office of Nuclear Energy to the Office of Science’s (SC) Office of Nuclear Physics (NP).

The purpose of this workshop is to bring together stakeholders (users and producers) from the different communities and disciplines (including medical, basic research, environmental, industrial, national security, defense) to discuss the Nation’s current and future needs for stable and radioactive isotopes, and options for improving the availability of needed isotopes.

Such questions as: Who uses isotopes and why? Who produces them and where? What is the status of the supply and what is missing? What are the needs today and in the future? What are the options for increasing availability and associated technical hurdles? The deliverable will be a report which articulates the Nation’s needs for isotopes across the various disciplines, the challenges in meeting those needs and options for improving the capabilities for meeting the demands. A questionnaire will be circulated to the Workshop participants to accumulate relevant information of interest to the goals of the Workshop.

The workshop is a 2 1/2 day meeting in Rockville, Maryland, in the suburbs of Washington D.C. Following a plenary session on the first day, the remaining time will be devoted to individual working groups meeting in parallel sessions. Three Working Groups will be established: Stable and Enriched Isotopes, Radioisotopes for Research and Development, and Radioisotopes for Applications. Participation in the Working Groups is through invitation only with selection determined in consultation with relevant organizations. The plenary session on the first day, however, will be able to accommodate additional interested attendees. Due to limited space, however, those interested in attending the plenary session that are not a member of a Working Group are asked to register via email.

A poster session will be held in the evening of the first day, which will be open to all participants of the Workshop, including the attendees of the plenary session. The poster session will offer the opportunity for participants from all communities to describe their interests related to stable and radioactive isotopes.. Those interested in presenting a poster should see the information below

February 4, 2008 :: Notice: The Department of Energy announces in its FY 2009 Congressional Budget Request the intent to transfer the DOE Isotope Program from the Office of Nuclear Energy to the Office of Science’s (SC) Office of Nuclear Physics (NP). Subject to Congressional Appropriation, under the NP program, the Isotope Program would be entitled “Isotope Production and Applications”.

The focus of the Isotope Production and Applications program will be on supporting the research, development, and production of stable and radioactive isotopes, and making them more readily available to respond to the needs of the Nation, including an initiative aimed at the research, development and production of research isotopes. NP plans to work with the SC Office of Biological and Environmental Research, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the scientific community in considering the findings and recommendations of the jointly sponsored NIH and DOE study by the National Academy of Sciences entitled the “State of the Science of Nuclear Medicine” issued in September 2007, as part of the process for identifying research and isotope production priorities.

The Department recognizes that radioisotopes are high-priority commodities that are essential for successful energy, medical and national security applications and outcomes. During this transition period, the Department will continue production of its current portfolio of isotope products and related services for both commercial and research customers, and will continue isotope deliveries as scheduled in any existing contractual arrangements.

The NP program has the expertise and a strong history in operating facilities and developing technologies that are relevant to the production of stable and radioactive isotopes.