Gamma Radiation is a natural, ionizing radiation emitted by a radioactive material as it decays. Focused gamma ray energy passes through medical products and devices but breaks down the DNA of microorganisms. Though this process uses a radioactive source, no radioactivity will be present in the decontaminated product.
Cobalt-60, manufactured specifically for this process, is the source of the Gamma Radiation. Unlike other methods, the Gamma Radiation Decontamination method does not require humidity, pressure or temperature to optimize the sterilization process. The high energy of the gamma rays irreparably damages the DNA of microorganisms, killing them and/or leaving them unable to reproduce. Having neither a positive nor negative charge, gamma particles can uniformly penetrate through material for long distances.
What materials are compatible with Gamma Radiation Decontamination?
Like Ethylene Oxide Decontamination, Gamma Radiation Decontamination is considered a ‘cold process’ since it does not rely on high temperature to achieve sterilization making it a good choice for moisture or heat-sensitive equipment and products. The additional quality of uniform penetration through materials makes this an ideal process.