Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Devices for absolute dosimetry of ionizing radiations

Limitaions to the conventional dosimetry instrumentation, currently used for control exposure in radiological protection and in radiation therapy, are directly traceable to lack of knowledge of the tissue response function to ionizing radiations. Consequently modifying factors such as radiation weighting factors, which are dependent on radiation type, must be applied if the radiation effectiveness is to be assessed.

It is now known that the radiation response is determined by nanometre structures in human cell nuclei. Consequently, prototype nano-detectors, based on conceptually new principles, have been devised and are being tested in gamma ray and neutron fields. As the devices are designed to have the correct tissue response function, their output signal is a direct measure of the bio-effectiveness. In effect, they are capable of absolute dosimetry without the need to apply modifying factors or to know the field intensity or type of radiation. Such devices are also capable of measuring absolutely the bioeffectiveness of intermediate energy neutrons in mixed fields. Application is envisaged in medical dosimetry for therapy as well as in radiation protection in the environment.

Reported by

University of St Andrews
North Haugh
KY16 9SS St Andrews
United Kingdom
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