Technetium


Radiation source for medical research

The metal and its compounds have naturally very few applications. The pertechnetate anion (TcO4-), possesses anticorrosive properties. This corrosion protection is available only in closed systems since the technetium must be confined because of its radioactivity.

Technetium and its alloys are superconductors with critical temperatures of the same order as niobium and its compounds, and they can be used to create magnetic fields of high strength in compact units at low temperature. The short-lived Tc-99m isotope has found extensive use in clinical medicine. It is used to locate tumors in the spleen, liver, brain and thyroid by scintillation scanning.