Some 50 years ago Sweden’s first oncological clinic was built using magnetite in the concrete for walls with radiation shielding properties.
First MagnaDense radiation shielding project
Lars Jonsson is an 84-year old radio physicist. He was involved in building Sweden’s first hospital with high density concrete magnetite filled walls. The building constructed in 1960 was the University Hospital in Umeå. He says “the magnetite that was used came from Kiruna. LKAB could provide exactly what we wanted”.
Fifty years later, in 2010, the 2nd generation clinic for radiation treatment of cancer opened at Umeå. Also, in this case, the construction company used MagnaDense for the walls of this facility to protect against radiation.
Benefits of high density concrete in hospital radiation rooms
Lars explains why magnetite is so efficient in this application. “We need buildings sealed extremely tightly for such a great amount of energy. This eliminates the risk of radiation leakage”. Lars initiated the study to see how well magnetite performed in this application. Luckily the result of this study was very positive.
Thousands of cancer patients have passed through the solid walls of Umeå’s first oncological clinic. Lars said upon visiting Umeå “the structure has held up well. It’s completely intact. The fact that the building was a model for others shows that we were on the right track from the beginning”.
Internationally applied for radiation shielding
Meanwhile, during these 50 years, LKAB Minerals have supplied their MagnaDense worldwide for a large number of construction projects in need of radiation shielding.
You can read some more details on various projects on our website:
- ITER research facility in France
- Proton therapy center in Shandong China
- Boron Neutron Capture Device (BNCT) treatment unit Finland
- European Spallation Source (ESS) Sweden
- Radiotherapy rooms in Poland
- ELI laser facilities in Czech Republic
and many more.