Working with Radiation

Personal radiation monitoring 

Occupationally exposed personnel who are likely to receive a total effective dose in excess of 1 mSv in any one year must wear an approved personal monitoring device (TLD badge). Each area controls the local distribution of TLD badges to their staff, including maintaining records of doses received by personnel. Adverse reports will be actioned as necessary, and notified to the Radiation Safety Officer.

The use of TLD badges is identified during the WSA process, and is overseen by the Radiation Safety Officer.

A list of the appropriate contact persons for radiation monitoring in your area is available in section 1 of the Radiation Management Plan.

Working rules

Deakin University has a range of working rules that apply to the use of radiation sources in the form of the Radiation Management Plan (PDF, 308.3 KB) . This is supplemented by faculty and/or laboratory specific guidelines that must be followed at all times to ensure dose limits are not exceeded.

Local working rules should be outlined in each WSA, and must include specific requirements for storage, shielding, PPE, personal and area monitoring, decontamination and emergency procedures, equipment calibration and testing, and waste disposal procedures as applicable.

An example of a Radiation laboratory guideline (PDF, 399.8 KB) .

Contamination monitoring and decontamination procedures

Where unsealed radioactive materials are used there is a probability of some form of contamination occurring. Attempts are made to limit contamination by maintaining designated radiation workspaces (marked benches or designated fume cupboards) and by regular contamination monitoring in order to prevent potential harm to personnel.

Contamination monitoring can be performed as appropriate using hand-held contamination monitors (Geiger-Muller pancake detector, eg. RAMGENE monitor) or using a wipe-test in association with a liquid scintillation counter, or a combination of both as appropriate to the isotope in use. Radiation contamination monitors should be serviced and calibrated periodically as required.

Where areas are found to be contaminated, appropriate decontamination techniques must be employed, followed by further monitoring and decontamination as required until the area is deemed free of contamination. Details of contamination monitoring and decontamination procedures to be used must be included in the WSA. 

Records of isotope use

Records must be maintained of the purchase, use and disposal of radioactive materials. Records covering the disposal of radionuclides should specify the radionuclide, its estimated activity, the physical nature of the discharged material, the date of disposal and the method of disposal.

Examples of the appropriate forms are given below. You may wish to use these templates or create your own;

Further details are available in section 10 of the Radiation Management Plan.

Disposal requirements

Correct disposal of all radioactive waste produced is the responsibility of the user. All staff and students working with unsealed radiation sources must ensure that waste disposal is carried out in the correct manner. The method of disposal of radioactive waste materials is to be clearly spelled out in the WSA and approved by the Radiation Safety Officer.

Incident reporting

A condition of the DH Management licence is the mandatory reporting of incidents involving ionising radiation. All incidents including unplanned exposures or area contaminations must be reported to the Radiation Safety Officer within 24 hours. Any incidents involving research approved by the DUHREC must also be notified directly to the Human Research Ethics Unit within 24 hours.

Further details are available in section 7 of the Radiation Management Plan (PDF, 308.3 KB) .

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