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Radiation Hazard : Biological Effects and Dose Limits Evaluation : Control: Assessment of hazard Methods of reducing hazard below

the dose limits

Nature of effect : Deterministic effect Probabilistic effect Who is affected :

Exposed individual (somatic) Progeny of exposed person (hereditary)

When effect appears:

Immediate (hours days) Delayed (months years)


Temporary Sterility NVD Epilation Skin burn Cataract Lethality


Probabilistic effects:
Cancer Leukaemia Hereditary effect No threshold dose is defined !!

 Determination of the radiation hazard that may result from exposure to radiation.  Assessment of the dose received by the exposed persons

Safety and security of sources Protection of personnel and public Safe work practices .

Internal Exposure -Resulting from intake of radioactive material External Exposure

-Resulting from source outside the human body

Entry of radioactive material into the body Inhalation Ingestion Injection Source of radiation inside the exposed person. Source has to be flushed out of the body. Working with sealed sources unlikely to cause internal exposure.

Source outside the exposed person Exposure ceases as the source is removed Shielding interposed between source and exposed person can reduce the dose Working with sealed sources likely to cause external exposure.

Alpha has a range of a few cm in air. Beta has a range of a few cm in Al / perspex Gamma can penetrate great distances Hazard Internal Alpha Beta
Not high Very high

Very high High

External Nil
Very high



D = D0 e- t dt

Personnel monitoring
TLD, Pocket dosimeter
Record total dose (mSv)

Area monitoring
Survey meter (e.g. GM survey meter)
Display dose-rate (mSv/h or mR/h)

Contamination monitor
Display reading in Bq/cm2


Working with sealed sources unlikely to cause internal exposure.

External hazard from alpha radiation is nil. External hazard from beta not severe External hazard from gamma can be severe Working with sealed sources likely to cause external exposure.

Source Co 137Cs 131I 203Hg 24Na


mGyh-1 GBq-1 0.31 0.07 0.05 0.03 0.42

Rh-1 Ci-1 1.32 0.3 0.22 0.13 1.84

Time Distance Shielding Activity limit Nucleonic gauges are designed to meet stringent safety standards. Dose-rate on the exterior is low. Individual monitoring not recommended. Area monitoring necessary.

Reduce period of exposure to radiation to reduce the dose received from source.

Increase distance from source to decrease exposure-rate. I 1 d 1 2 = I2 d 2 2 Double the distance from the source; dose-rate falls to the original value. Halve the distance from the source; doserate increase to 4 times the original value.

HVT reduces dose-rate to half the original value. TVT reduces dose-rate to a tenth of the original value.


16 mSv/h 8 mSv/h 4 mSv/h HVL = HVT TVL = TVT


0.4 mSv/h

Exposure-rate at 1 m from a gamma source = Activity x gamma ray constant X = q x GRC Sv/h

For beta and gamma = 4 Bq per sq. cm For alpha = 0.4 Bq per sq. cm

High Z shielding of beta radiation gives rise to bremsstrahlung radiation Ideal beta shields are perspex and Al

High electron density materials are suitable for most of the gamma sources Lead, concrete, depleted uranium ------------------------------------------------------HVL TVL Source cm Pb cm Pb ------------------------------------------------------60Co 1.2 4




Neutron sources commonly used in industrial process control (e.g. moisture content in coke in furnaces) and well logging are 252Cf and 241AmBe. Fast neutron flux of 3.7 n cm-2 s-1 corresponds to a dose-rate of 10 Sv /h. Hydrogenous materials like paraffin are used for shielding neutrons. Such materials slow down fast neutrons which are then absorbed by boron releasing particles detected by conventional radiation detectors.

Procure only gauges approved by AERB Ensure safety and security of source during use and storage Maintenance by authorized service engineer Shutter OFF when not in use Minimize occupancy near installation

Procure and use area monitors Generally individual monitoring recommended only for well-logging personnel Maintain a logbook of operations Handle emergency carefully (time, distance, shielding) and inform AERB immediately. After useful life, source should be sent for disposal with permission from AERB. Never keep a source that you do not need.

To reduce the dose to the individual Reduce the time of exposure Increase the distance from the source Interpose a shielding material between source and expose person Limit the activity handled

Exposure-rate at 1 m from a gamma source = Activity x gamma ray constant X = q x GRC Sv/h

Example set 1
1. What is the exposure-rate at 1 m from a cobalt 60 source of activity 220 GBq? q = 220 GBq GRC for cobalt 60 = 0.31 mGy h-1GBq-1 at 1 m Dose rate at 1 m = q x GRC mGy / h = 220 x 0.31 mGy / h = 68.2 mGy / h 2. What will be dose received by a person who spends five hours at 1 m from the source? Dose received = dose-rate x period of exposure Dose received = 68.2 mGy/h x 5 hours = 341 mGy

Example set 2
3. At 1 m from a 60Co source the dose-rate is 62 mGy/h. What is the activity of the source? Let the activity be q GBq. Dose rate at 1 m from the source = q x 0.31 mGy/h i.e. q x 0.31 = 62 mGy/h q = 200 GBq 4. A person spent 7 hours at a place. His TLD recorded a total dose of 840 mGy. What is the dose-rate at the place? 5. The dose-rate at 1 m from a source is 40 mGy/h. What is the dose-rate at 2m? 6. The dose-rate at 2 m from a source is 36 mGy/h. What is the dose-rate at 3 m? 7. The dose-rate at 5 m from a source is 225 mGy/h. What is the dose-rate at 3 m?

Example set 3
8. What is the distance required to reduce the dose rate from a 137Cs source of activity 50 GBq to 0.1 mGy/h? I1 = q x GRC mGy/h I2 = 0.1 mGy/h d1 = 1 m d2 = ?

The GRC of 137Cs is 0.072 mGy/h per GBq at 1 m. 9. What is the thickness of lead required for a storage container housing a 60Co source of activity 6.5 GBq so that at 1 m from the source position, the dose rate does not exceed 0.01 mSv/h? Dose-rate at 1 m from the source without shielding = 6.5 x 0.31 mSv/h = 2 mSv/h Shielding required to reduce this dose-rate to 0.01 mSv/h is 2 TVL + 1 HVL Lead shielding thickness = 2 x 4 + 1.2 = 9.2 cm 10. Can a 137Cs of activity 13, 500 GBq be stored in the above container without exceeding the dose limit of 0.01 mSv/h at 1 m from the source position ?