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Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our FAQ page, below you will find the answers to our most commonly asked questions. If you couldn't find an answer to your question please drop us a line on our Contact page. We would be more than happy to answer and address any questions or concerns you might have.

A Dosimeter measures a person’s exposure to radiation in occupational settings and is sometimes called a “badge” or “X-ray badge”. There are a number of different kinds of dosimeters. The types we use are called thermoluminescent dosimeters (TLDs), which contain filters and crystals to determine the type and amount of radiation received (X-ray, gamma, beta, or neutron).

As the dosimeter is exposed to radiation, energy is deposited into the crystals within the dosimeter. During processing, the crystals are heated and energy is released in the form of light and a glow curve is captured. The data is passed through an algorithm, which is used to determine the type of received radiation and calculate the worker’s occupational exposure.

Employers utilizing sources of radiation in their business can only legally do so if they are in possession of a license permitting them to safely operate their sources. The licensee must control and monitor the occupational dose to individual employees. Occupational dose means the dose received by an individual in the course of employment in which the individual’s assigned duties involve exposure to radiation or to radioactive material from licensed and unlicensed sources of radiation. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) states in the Code of Federal Regulations (10CFR20):

§ 20.1101 Radiation protection programs.
(a) Each licensee shall develop, document, and implement a radiation protection program commensurate with the scope and extent of licensed activities and sufficient to ensure compliance with the provisions of this part. (See § 20.2102 for recordkeeping requirements relating to these programs.)

(b) The licensee shall use, to the extent practical, procedures and engineering controls based upon sound radiation protection principles to achieve occupational doses and doses to members of the public that are as low as is reasonably achievable (ALARA).

The control badge is used to monitor non-occupational dose that includes background and other sources of radiation that are not a part of the workplace radiation exposure. The worker’s badges should be kept with the control badge when they are not being worn and should be stored within the facility away from the source of radiation. The control badge travels to and from the facility with the personnel badges. (It is very important that the control badge(s) assigned to a shipment accompany that shipment in transit.) When processed, the dose recorded from the control badge is subtracted from the personnel badges, so that the net occupational exposure can be accurately determined.

New badges are sent to the location prior to the end of the current wear period with return packaging. At the end of each wear period, all badges are returned to the laboratory for processing and the new badges are put into use. Once the badges are processed, a dose report will be provided to the client.

“The National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP) provides third-party accreditation to testing and calibration laboratories… NVLAP operates an accreditation system that is compliant with ISO/IEC 17025″ (From NVLAP Website). All dosimetry used to demonstrate compliance with federal radiation protection limits must be accredited by NVLAP in the appropriate radiation categories. NVLAP accreditation includes requirements for organizational and technical aspects of the dosimetry program that might have an impact on quality. It includes a blind-test program that provides an unbiased, third party measurement of the precision and accuracy of a dosimetry program. NVLAP accreditation signifies that a laboratory has demonstrated that it operates in accordance with NVLAP management and technical requirements pertaining to quality systems, test and calibration methods, equipment, measurement traceability, sampling, handling of test and calibration items, and test and calibration reports. Accreditation must be renewed each year.