A Proposal for a Radiation Protection Scale to better communicate with the Public

Konrad Mück, Michail Balanov, Anton Bayer, Burkhardt Klaus, H. Brunner Hans, Dana Drabova, Denys Rousseau, Eli Stern, Hu Zunsu

Research output: Chapter in Book or Conference ProceedingsConference Proceedings with Oral Presentationpeer-review

Abstract

A major problem in the communication of radiation protection experts with the public is misunderstanding of radiation protection concepts and the various units used in radiation protect with tend to confuse the public. Another problem to inability of the public to differentiate between low, medium and high doses their possible implications. Also the public and the media are not able to comprehend the differences between units and subunits (Sv, mSv, µSv, etc.). Therefore, a simple, for the general citizen easily unterstandable scale for the radiation exposure of human beings is proposed which should assist in making radiation exposure values and their consequences to health more easily unterstandable for the general public. The logarithmic setup of the scale yields an easily understandable scale of integer numbers from 1 to 7 where the levels 0 - 3 of the scale describe the dose range of miniscule dose values below natural radiation exposure levels, level 4 the dose range of 1 - 10 mSv, i.e. the dose range of the natural radiation exposure, while level 6 and 7 define the dose range 0.1 to 1 Sv and above 1 Sv in whick protective measures to reduce the dose are important or absolutely required to avoid significant effects for the concerned individuals. In the approach to facilitate the comprehension by less knowledgeable persons, the proposed radiation protection scale is comparable to other scales (INES-scale, RICHTER-scale) where events of a wide range from practically no consequences via observable effects to severe consequences are given in an understandable "risk-scale". In the opinion of the authors the scale would facilitate the comprehension of the public why for a given dose no action to reduce it is considered and for another dose level dose reduction measures are recommended or absolutely required. The radiation protection scale should also lead to easily understandable risk factors in an environment where radiation is considered by the public and the media as absolutely dangerous at any level without taking into account the actual dose value and the associated risk.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIRPA 10
Publication statusPublished - 2000
EventIRPA 10 -
Duration: 1 Jan 2000 → …

Conference

ConferenceIRPA 10
Period1/01/00 → …

Research Field

  • Biosensor Technologies

Keywords

  • IRPA
  • Radiation
  • Protection
  • Scale

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