Deakin Research

Deakin Research

Dose limits and annual dose estimation

Dose limits

Radiation workers (occupational exposure)
Whole body - 50 mSv in any one year
20 mSv/year (averaged over a period of 5 consecutive calendar years)
Dose rate of 10 µSv/hour equates to a dose of 20 mSv in a working year
Non-radiation workers/member of the public
Whole body - 1 mSv/year
Dose rate of 0.5 µSv/hour equates to a dose of 1 mSv in a working year

Please note workers who are pregnant or trying to conceive must consult with the Radiation Safety Officer prior to working with radiation, to ensure exposure remains below the public effective dose limit (1 mSv/year).

Annual dose estimation

An estimation of the total annual effective external dose can be made using data sheets available in an extract from the Radionuclide and Radiation Protection Data Handbook (2002) . The values provided in the ‘External Exposure’ section of the data sheets cover several exposure routes, and by adjusting for the estimated contact hours and the source size, an approximate annual dose can be calculated.

Example of dose estimation - exposure to a 37MBq Co-57 source for 25 hours.

  • Choose the most likely exposure type: a point source at 30cm
  • Source size = 37MBq
  • Exposure hours = 25
  • Value from data sheet for point source exposure at 30cm for a 1MBq Co-57 is 2.52 x 10-4mSv/hr

Calculation: (2.52 x 10-4) x 37 x 25 = 0.2331mSv

Please refer to data sheet here

When estimating a dose the worst-case should be assumed (ie. choose high values). If your estimated dose exceeds the limit listed above please contact the Radiation Safety Officer.


Deakin University acknowledges the traditional land owners of present campus sites.

12th June 2012