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cobalt 60

noun, Chemistry.
a radioactive isotope of cobalt having a mass number of 60 and a half-life of 5.2 years, used chiefly in radiotherapy.
Origin of cobalt 60
1945-50 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Historical Examples
  • Nothing happened although the board showed the gauge's cobalt-60 beta and gamma still hot.

    The Thirst Quenchers Rick Raphael
cobalt-60 in Culture
cobalt 60 [(koh-bawlt)]

A radioactive isotope produced when neutrons bombard atoms of the element cobalt.

Note: Cobalt 60 is a common substance used in radiation therapy for cancer.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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