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Dounreay reports dose reductions at international conference

June 07, 2012

Health physicists advise projects on measures they need to protect workers cleaning out hazardous areas, such as here in a waste facility at the Dounreay Materials Test Reactor

Dounreay has reported a reduction in average exposure to radiation while increasing the pace of work to dismantle high-hazard facilities.

The site’s approach to the protection of workers from radiation hazards is set out in a paper presented to the 13th congress of the International Radiation Protection Association held in Glasgow.

Health physicists at the site play a vital role assessing radiation hazards and advising project teams of the precautions needed to protect workers from harm when cleaning out redundant facilities.

Average dose levels last year were 0.1mSv, maintaining the downward pressure on exposure levels seen in recent years.

The paper lists recent changes in practice, including a change to a new one-piece airline suit that provides workers with better protection against contamination.

Pete Thompson, head of radiological assurance and safeguards at site closure contractor DSRL, was one of the authors.

He said: “Our over-riding priority is to close down this site without harm to people. The paper describes the practical steps we’ve taken to help project teams reduce their doses while accelerating hazard reduction.”

Download papers presented to the conference:

Paper: Radiological Protection Arrangements for Decommissioning the Complex Nuclear Site at Dounreay

Paper: The Effect of Radiological Protection Policies and Work Programme on Radiological Measurements at the Dounreay Site

Poster: Radiological protection arrangements for decommissioning the complex nuclear site at Dounreay

Poster: Effect of RP Policies & Work Programme on Radiological Measurements at the Dounreay Site

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