Dr. Tom Ruth has been a friend to Armenia in helping to launch our isotope research program at AANL. Dr. Ruth was just elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada to honor his significant contributions to nuclear medicine. We join with our Canadian colleagues to congratulate Dr. Tom Ruth. Dr. Ruth was tremendously helpful and supportive to AANL and to the launching of the new Division of Isotope Research and Production.
Dr. Ruth sponsored the Canadian collaboration with AANL to launch the new division. He has launched and advanced the entire field of medical physics in Canada, USA, and the world. Dr. Ruth has recently, in 2017, enabled the membership of AANL into the international Targetry and Target Chemistry organization (WTTC) that has annual meetings to discuss successes and challenges in isotope production with cyclotrons, maintains a continued historical resource of all cyclotron based isotope production techniques as well as best practices. The WTTC has been enormously helpful to new countries and new projects. Ruben Dallaqyan and Gurgen Elbakyan (AANL) were invited to present results from the Armenian cyclotron at a conference in Portugal in 2017 without any costs due to the help of Dr. Ruth. The WTTC can be a continued and significant resource for Armenia.
Tom Ruth visited Armenia and was instrumental to financial assistance via several grants to purchase the necessary instrumentation and equipment for AANL. This way, AANL Isotope division under the leadership of Albert Avetisyan could repair the new isotope laboratory building and conduct large-scale experiments and research. The division of Isotopes Research and Production, within the framework of IAEA, coordinated the development of 99Tc from non-enriched uranium sources. This helped the success of AANL in producing and publishing new methods of producing 99Tc, which is used in over 30 million medical procedures worldwide. We are grateful to Dr. Tom Ruth and join in celebrating his election to the Royal Society of Canada.