South Australia Branch

A Branch of the Australian Nuclear Association was formed in South Australia early in 2017. Branch members are interested in nuclear issues, including submissions to Government Inquiries, occasional meetings to inform the public and the uses of radiation and radioactivity to our society. We hope to remove the current legislative bans on nuclear technology in state and federal politics and enable a more rational discussion of the energy mix in Australian electricity generation. We see nuclear energy as an indispensable part of the solution to our current energy crisis. Small Modular Reactors especially can act as low carbon energy sources to replace fossil fuel use  and act as reliable, cost effective and sustainable back-up, to the use of renewables at those times when they cannot meet our energy need.

The office bearers for the SA Branch are
–    Dr Massey de los Reyes (Chair), and
–    Dr John Patterson (Secretary)

For more information please contact

John Patterson has given presentations on Our Electricity Prices: How did it come to this? Are there Solutions to community groups in South Australia. Slides of his talk are available here 

John invites community groups who would like to hear his presentation on the benefits of nuclear energy as part of Australia’s future energy system.  Please contact John on the email address above if your group would like to hear his presentation. 

Bright New World is an organisation which advocates for a vision where modern societies thrive on abundant, clean energy. Its website is  “What history has taught us is that we need plentiful energy, it needs to be cleaner, and have a lower negative impact on the environment than that used before.”  “The potential of nuclear energy, especially new generations of super-efficient plants is so great, that we can go large on how we want the world to be.”

Reactor Produced Medical and Industrial Radio-Isotopes

Many useful radioisotopes are produced most conveniently and cheaply in a nuclear reactor by neutrons. In Australia the OPAL Reactor is an important source of radioisotopes for Australia and export.

Reactor-produced medical isotopes with their half-lives:

  • Molybdenum-99 6 days, for Technetium-99m 6 hours used for medical diagnosis.
  • Iridium-192, 74 days used for high dose-rate brachytherapy
  • Iodine-131 8 days, used for brachytherapy
  • Yttrium-90 64 hours
  • Samarium-153 46 hours
  • Lutetium -177 6.7 days
  • Strontium 89 50.6 days
  • Iodine-125 60.1 days
  • Palladium-103 17 days
  • Phosphorus-32 14.3 days
  • Industrial, Environmental tracers and Agricultural
  • Americium-241 433 years, used for smoke alarms and soil moisture gauge
  • Cobalt-60 5.3 years, used for gamma sterilisation, industrial radiography of welds, fill height switches, and in blast furnaces
  • Caesium-137 30 years, used for industrial testing and a lab source
  • Gold-198 2.7 days, used as an environmental tracer