Oklo, Atomic Alchemy team up for future isotope production

17 May 2024

Days after beginning trading on the New York Stock Exchange, US-based fast fission plant developer Oklo Inc has announced it is forming a strategic partnership with Atomic Alchemy to produce radioisotopes from Oklo's recycling process and through fast reactor production of isotopes.

(Image: Gensler)

The partnership will aim to combine Oklo's work to build and operate fast reactors and fuel recycling expertise with Atomic Alchemy's expertise in isotope production to meet increasing demands for isotopes. Isotopes are vital for many promising medical, energy, industry, and science applications, Oklo said.

Oklo has more than USD300 million of cash on hand following its business combination with AltC Acquisition Corp ahead of its public listing. It said it will use its "robust funding position to execute on the strong customer interest in its Aurora powerhouse", adding that the deployment of Aurora powerhouses to customer sites "not only provides Oklo with consistent, recurring revenue but also enables exciting new business opportunities in fuel recycling and radioisotopes production, which is supported by the partnership with Atomic Alchemy".

"Industrial and medical isotopes are indispensable to many sectors of the economy, from treating diseases like cancer to fuelling clean energy technologies like radioisotope thermoelectric generators, fission power plants, and even fusion research. The domestic and global demands for these crucial elements are growing at an accelerated pace," said Jacob DeWitte, co-founder and CEO of Oklo. "Our partnership with Atomic Alchemy will enable us to diversify our product offerings with radioisotopes produced from our fuel recycling process."

"The world is facing a shortage of vital isotopes. We are witnessing many promising cancer therapies stuck in clinical trials, unable to secure sufficient quantities of isotopes in a timely manner. I'm proud to be partnering with Oklo to help expand our domestic supplies of isotopes and tritium," said Atomic Alchemy founder and CEO Thomas Eiden. The company is working to solve shortages of radioisotopes by building the world's first fully vertically-integrated, scalable radioisotope production facility, and is described by Eiden as "the SpaceX of nuclear medicine".

Oklo, founded in 2013, plans to commercialise its liquid metal fast reactor technology in the Aurora 'powerhouse', a fast neutron reactor using heat pipes to transport heat from the reactor core to a supercritical carbon dioxide power conversion system to generate electricity. The company has received a site use permit from the US Department of Energy for a prototype unit to be built at the Idaho National Laboratory. It began trading on the NYSE on 10 May following the completion of its business combination with AltC Acquisition Corp the day before.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News