NorthStar is collaborating with Von Gahlen for a second time. Previously, they worked to enhance production capacity at NorthStar’s Facility located at the University of Missouri Research Reactor (MURR®) in Columbia, Missouri by adding a pair of Hot Cell systems to support associated NorthStar Mo-99 filling lines that, upon FDA approval, will significantly increase NorthStar’s capacity to fill and ship the medical radioisotope molybdenum-99 (Mo-99).
NorthStar’s Molybdenum-99 filling system (pending FDA approval)
In order to increase capacity and create dual production and distribution hubs, NorthStar has embarked on a major expansion at its Beloit, Wisconsin facility, again working with Von Gahlen as their vendor of choice. Recently, construction was completed on their new Isotope Processing Facility which will house two radioisotope filling systems, dissolution system and additional packaging and logistics space. By maintaining this collaboration with NorthStar, this is clearly aligned with our goal to provide tailor made solutions to meet customer needs.
Empty source vessel staging area
Responsiveness and flexibility required
Rim Milunas, VP, Engineering at NorthStar shares his experiences with Von Gahlen: “For the original project there were multiple reasons why we chose Von Gahlen. Their technical expertise within the radioisotope processing industry was clearly a key factor. Next, we were impressed by the comprehensive and detailed nature of the project proposal. It aligned very well with our business requirements. Finally, Von Gahlen’s commitment to local service in the U.S. was essential to meet the long term needs that our type of business demands.”
Hot cell and shielded storage area
“After a successful installation at our production facility in Columbia, Missouri, we continued this partnership for our facility expansion in Beloit, Wisconsin. A key factor for this decision was that Von Gahlen was already familiar with our business and operations. We also knew they had the techniques and resources needed to manage this project and had demonstrated excellent engineering capabilities and site installation services. What was of equal importance is their dedication to fulfill not only the requirements of the project but the objectives of NorthStar’s business. They consistently review each aspect of the project to ensure that it fits the needs of the overall system. In the event of a design or process change, Von Gahlen is very responsive and flexible, which will allow NorthStar to maximize the system capabilities.”
For Von Gahlen, this current project with NorthStar in Beloit, Wisconsin, proved more challenging than the previous collaboration. In order to deliver on the respective timeline, we needed an even more comprehensive approach regarding project management. Milunas confirmed: “This is critical for NorthStar bringing a new radioisotope processing facility online. This new facility is critical to the scale up of the business to support customer demand as well as to create dual production and distribution hubs.”
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