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ORNL's Californium-252 is planned to Play Pivotal Role in New Reactor Startups

The world’s first continuously operating reactor began operating in 1943 in East Tennessee and later became the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory.


ORNL announced that Californium-252 is produced at ORNL through the DOE Isotope Program and it is the only place in the world capable of efficiently producing the radioisotope Californium-252, an essential material for any nuclear reactor startup. This summer, the lab shipped a batch of Californium-252 bulk wire to support the startup of two new nuclear reactors, under construction at Georgia Power’s Plant Vogtle in Waynesboro, Georgia, which will be the first new nuclear reactors built in the United States in over 30 years.


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Source: Oak Ridge National Laboratory