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Polonium Production


Polonium-210 is synthesized neutron-exposure via native bismuth which contains 208Bi in nuclear reactors with yielding beta-active bismuth-210 as an intermediate product:

208Bi + n = 210Bi = 210Po + e-

exposure to accelerated protons gives Polonium-208, which is separated from bismuth by sublimation in vacuum. Long-life isotopes still are not applied practically because of synthesis complexity. The following reactions are used in synthesis:

207Pb + 4He = 208Po + 3n
208Bi + 1H = 208Po + 2n
208Bi + 2D = 208Po + 3n
208Bi + 2D = 208Po + 2n

where 4He - alpha-particles, 1H - accelerated protons and 2D - accelerated deuterons (deuterium nuclei).

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