Cobalt 60 Mass Number: What You Need To Know In 2023

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As we enter the year 2023, it’s important to stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the world of science. One topic that has been making headlines recently is cobalt 60, a radioactive isotope that is commonly used in medical and industrial applications. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at cobalt 60 mass number and explore its various uses and properties.

What is Cobalt 60?

Cobalt 60 is a radioactive isotope of cobalt, with a mass number of 60. It is produced by bombarding natural cobalt with neutrons in a nuclear reactor, and it has a half-life of 5.27 years. Cobalt 60 is a gamma emitter, which means it emits high-energy gamma rays that can penetrate through materials and tissues.

Medical Applications of Cobalt 60

One of the main uses of cobalt 60 is in radiation therapy for cancer treatment. The gamma rays emitted by cobalt 60 can be used to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Cobalt 60 is also used in medical imaging, such as in positron emission tomography (PET) scans, which can help detect cancer and other diseases.

Industrial Applications of Cobalt 60

Cobalt 60 is also widely used in industrial applications, such as in the sterilization of medical equipment and food products. The gamma rays emitted by cobalt 60 can kill bacteria and other microorganisms that may be present on surfaces or in packaging. Cobalt 60 is also used in the testing of industrial materials for defects and in the irradiation of polymers to improve their properties.

Safety Considerations

Although cobalt 60 has many useful applications, it is also highly radioactive and can be dangerous if not handled properly. Exposure to high levels of gamma radiation can cause radiation sickness and increase the risk of cancer. Therefore, it is important to follow strict safety protocols when working with cobalt 60 and to dispose of it properly when it is no longer needed.


Cobalt 60 mass number is an important topic in the world of science and technology. Its unique properties make it a valuable tool in medical and industrial applications, but it also requires careful handling and disposal to ensure safety. As we continue to explore the potential of cobalt 60, it is essential to stay informed about its uses and risks.