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Radiation Safety and Operations
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How most of us feel about radiation until we understand the principles of safe use:

How most of us feel about radiation until we understand the principles of safe use:

Slide 2

Radiation Safety and Operations

Slide 3

Todays Mixed Message

Todays Mixed Message

The amount and type of radionuclides used at the University of Montana do not pose undue risk HOWEVER

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission does NOT have a sense of humor

Slide 4

NRC Enforcement Policy

NRC Enforcement Policy

Prompt and vigorous enforcement action will be taken when dealing with licensees and their employees who do not achieve the necessary meticulous attention to detail and the high standard of compliance which the NRC expects

Slide 5

What are we not talking about? At least not much

What are we not talking about? At least not much

Non-Ionizing Radiation

Slide 6

Non-Ionizing Radiation from High to Low Frequency

Non-Ionizing Radiation from High to Low Frequency

Slide 7

Radiation and Radioactive Material are a Natural Part of Our Lives

Radiation and Radioactive Material are a Natural Part of Our Lives

We are constantly exposed to low levels of radiation from outer space, earth, and the healing arts.

Low levels of naturally occurring radioactive material are in our environment, the food we eat, and in many consumer products.

Some consumer products also contain small amounts of man-made radioactive material.

Smoke

Detector

Slide 8

Unstable Atoms Decay

Unstable Atoms Decay

The number of decays that occur per unit time in the radioactive material tell us how radioactive it is.

Units include Curies (Ci), decays per minute (dpm), and Becquerels (decays per second).

When an unstable atom decays, it transforms into another atom and releases its excess energy in the form of radiation. Radiation can be

Electromagnetic radiation (like X or gamma rays), and

Particles (like alpha, beta, or neutron radiation)

Sometimes the new atom is also unstable, creating a decay chain

Slide 9

How Unstable Is It?

How Unstable Is It?

The Half-Life describes how quickly Radioactive Material decays away with time. It is the time required for half of the unstable atoms to decay.

Some Examples Example:

Some natural isotopes (like uranium and thorium) have half-lives that are billions of years,

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