Institutional members access full text with Ovid®


Cummings, Frederick*

doi: 10.1097/HP.0b013e3181c479dc

In 2010, the U.S. Department of Energy will adopt a new set of radiation weighting factors and quality factors to be consistent with values recommended by the International Commission on Radiological Protection. The change will affect the magnitude of occupational exposure assigned to radiation workers exposed to neutron radiation. Understanding the energy response of the dosimeter and the effect of the new quantities is critical to accurately ensuring that occupational exposure remains below the established regulatory limits. Therefore, the factors used to interpret dosimeter readings must be re-evaluated for each irradiation field over the range of neutron energies in which the dosimeter is used. This paper describes one method of determining the neutron response of the dosimeter. A Monte Carlo approach was used to model the energy response of the Panasonic Model 809 dosimeter over the range of energies from 1.0 × 10−8 to 20 MeV. The response, normalized to the response at 2.1 MeV, ranged from approximately 0.5 at 20 MeV to approximately 26 at 1 eV. The response was then divided at each energy by the appropriate dose conversion coefficient to determine the dose response of the dosimeter. The dose responses, normalized to the response at 2.1 MeV, ranged from approximately 0.4 at 20 MeV to 765 at 1 eV. Dose conversion factors were determined for various reference neutron spectra and plotted on the dose response curve. Good agreement was observed except for the case of D2O-moderated 252Cf.

* National Security Technologies, LLC, Nevada Test Site, P.O. Box 677, M/S NTS270, Mercury, NV 89023.

For correspondence contact Frederick (Rick) Cummings at the above address, or email at

(Manuscript accepted 5 October 2009)

©2010Health Physics Society