This study assesses the 'radio-ecological' impacts of Fukushima nuclear accident on non-human biota using the ERICA Tool, which adopts an internationally verified methodology. The paper estimates the impacts of the accident on terrestrial and marine biota based on the environmental data reported in literature for Japan, China, South Korea and the USA. Discernible impacts have been detected in the marine biota around Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. This study confirms that the Fukushima accident had caused heavier damage to marine bionts compared with terrestrial flora and fauna, in Japan.
A study on the radiation dose associated with cerebral CT angiography (CTA) and CT perfusion (CTP) was conducted on an anthropomorphic phantom with the aim of estimating the effective dose (E) and entrance skin dose (ESD) in the eyes and thyroid gland during different CTA and CTP protocols. The E was calculated to be 0.61 and 0.28 mSv in CTA with 100 and 80 kV(p), respectively. In contrast, CTP resulted in an estimated E of 2.74 and 2.07 mSv corresponding to 40 and 30 s protocols, respectively. The eyes received a higher ESD than the thyroid gland in all of these protocols. The results of this study indicate that combining both CTA and CTP procedures are not recommended in the stroke evaluation due to high radiation dose. Application of modified techniques in CTA (80 kV(p)) and CTP (30 s) is highly recommended in clinical practice for further radiation dose reduction.
Estimation of the surface dose is very important for patients undergoing radiation therapy. The purpose of this study is to investigate the dose at the surface of a water phantom at a depth of 0.007 cm as recommended by the International Commission on Radiological Protection and International Commission on Radiation Units and Measurement with radiochromic films (RFs), thermoluminescent dosemeters and an ionisation chamber in a 6-MV photon beam. The results were compared with the theoretical calculation using Monte Carlo (MC) simulation software (MCNP5, BEAMnrc and DOSXYZnrc). The RF was calibrated by placing the films at a depth of maximum dose (d(max)) in a solid water phantom and exposing it to doses from 0 to 500 cGy. The films were scanned using a transmission high-resolution HP scanner. The optical density of the film was obtained from the red component of the RGB images using ImageJ software. The per cent surface dose (PSD) and percentage depth dose (PDD) curve were obtained by placing film pieces at the surface and at different depths in the solid water phantom. TLDs were placed at a depth of 10 cm in a solid water phantom for calibration. Then the TLDs were placed at different depths in the water phantom and were exposed to obtain the PDD. The obtained PSD and PDD values were compared with those obtained using a cylindrical ionisation chamber. The PSD was also determined using Monte Carlo simulation of a LINAC 6-MV photon beam. The extrapolation method was used to determine the PSD for all measurements. The PSD was 15.0±3.6% for RF. The TLD measurement of the PSD was 16.0±5.0%. The (0.6 cm(3)) cylindrical ionisation chamber measurement of the PSD was 50.0±3.0%. The theoretical calculation using MCNP5 and DOSXYZnrc yielded a PSD of 15.0±2.0% and 15.7±2.2%. In this study, good agreement between PSD measurements was observed using RF and TLDs with the Monte Carlo calculation. However, the cylindrical chamber measurement yielded an overestimate of the PSD. This is probably due to the ionisation chamber calibration factor that is only valid in charged particle equilibrium condition, which is not achieved at the surface in the build-up region.
The objective of this study was to determine the gross alpha and gross beta activity concentrations from the different soil types found in the Kinta District, Perak, Malaysia. A total of 128 soil samples were collected and their dose rates were measured 1 m above the ground. Gross alpha and gross beta activity measurements were carried out using gas flow proportional counter, Tennelec Series 5 LB5500 Automatic Low Background Counting System. The alpha activity concentration ranged from 15 to 9634 Bq kg(-1) with a mean value of 1558±121 Bq kg(-1). The beta activity concentration ranged from 142 to 6173 Bq kg(-1) with a mean value of 1112±32 Bq kg(-1). High alpha and beta activity concentrations are from the same soil type. The results of the analysis show a strong correlation between the gross alpha activity concentration and dose rate (R = 0.92). The data obtained can be used as a database for each soil type.
The distribution of natural radionuclides ((238)U, (232)Th and (40)K) and their radiological hazard effect in rocks collected from the state of Johor, Malaysia were determined by gamma spectroscopy using a high-purity germanium detector. The highest values of (238)U, (232)Th and (40)K activity concentrations (67±6, 85±7 and 722±18 Bg kg(-1), respectively) were observed in the granite rock. The lowest concentrations of (238)U and (232)Th (2±0.1 Bq kg(-1) for (238)U and 2±0.1 Bq kg(-1) for (232)Th) were observed in gabbro rock. The lowest concentration of (40)K (45±2 Bq kg(-1)) was detected in sandstone. The radium equivalent activity concentrations for all rock samples investigated were lower than the internationally accepted value of 370 Bq kg(-1). The highest value of radium equivalent in the present study (239±17 Bq kg(-1)) was recorded in the area of granite belonging to an acid intrusive rock geological structure. The absorbed dose rate was found to range from 4 to 112 nGy h(-1). The effective dose ranged from 5 to 138 μSv h(-1). The internal and external hazard index values were given in results lower than unity. The purpose of this study is to provide information related to radioactivity background levels and the effects of radiation on residents in the study area under investigation. Moreover, the relationships between the radioactivity levels in the rocks within the geological structure of the studied area are discussed.
An extensive survey was carried out for gamma dose rates (GDRs) in the Mersing district, Johor, Malaysia. The average value of GDR measured in the district was found to be 140 nGy h(-1), in the range of 40-355 nGy h(-1). The mean weighted dose rate to the population, annual effective dose equivalent, collective effective dose equivalent, lifetime cancer risk were 0.836 mSv y(-1), 0.171 mSv, 1.18 × 10(1) man Sv y(-1) and 6.98 × 10(-4) Sv y, respectively. An isodose map was produced for the district. One way analysis of variance was used to test for differences due to different geological formations present in the Mersing District.
The purpose of this project is to evaluate the suitability of different sites as locations for obtaining underground water for consumption. The analysis of ²³⁸U, ²³²Th and ⁴⁰K from rock samples from each layer of borehole at a depth of ∼50 m at Site A borehole, S3L1-S3L6 in Gosa and 40 m at Site B borehole, S4L1-S4L5 in Lugbe, Abuja, north central Nigeria is presented. The gamma-ray spectrometry was carried out using a high-purity germanium detector coupled to a computer-based high-resolution multichannel analyzer. The activity concentrations at Site A borehole for ²³⁸U have a mean value of 26 ± 3, ranging from 23 ± 2 to 30 ± 3 Bq kg⁻¹, ²³²Th a mean value of 63 ± 5, ranging from 48 ± 4 to 76 ± 6 Bq kg⁻¹ and ⁴⁰K a mean value of 573 ± 72, ranging from 437 ± 56 to 821 ± 60 Bq kg⁻¹. The activity concentrations at Site B borehole for ²³⁸U have a mean value of 20 ± 2, ranging from 16 ± 2 to 23 ± 2 Bq kg⁻¹, ²³²Th a mean value of 46 ± 4, ranging from 43 ± 4 to 49 ± 4 Bq kg⁻¹, ⁴⁰K a mean value of 915 ± 116 and ranging from 817 ± 103 Bq kg⁻¹ to 1011 ± 128 Bq kg⁻¹. It is noted that the higher activity concentrations of ²³²Th and ²³⁸U are found in Site A at Gosa. Site B has lower radioactivity, and it is recommended that both sites are suitable for underground water consumption.
The presence of natural radioactivity and (137)Cs has been investigated in fresh media obtained from South China Sea locations off the coast of peninsular Malaysia. The media include seafood, sea water and sediment. The samples were collected some weeks prior to the devastating 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and associated tsunami, the occurrence of which precipitated the Fukushima incident. All samples showed the presence of naturally occurring (226)Ra, (228)Ra and primordial (40)K, all at typically prevailing levels. The concentrations of natural radioactivity in molluscs were found to be greater than that of other marine life studied herein, the total activity ranging from 337 to 393 Bq kg(-1) dry weight. The total activity in sea water ranged from 15 to 88 Bq l(-1). Sediment samples obtained at deep sea locations more than 20 km offshore further revealed the presence of (137)Cs. The activity of (137)Cs varied from ND to 0.5 Bq kg(-1) dry weight, the activity increasing with offshore distance and depth. The activity concentrations presented herein should be considered useful in assessing the impact of any future radiological contamination to the marine environment.
A femur phantom made of wax and a real human bone was used to study the dose during radiographical procedures. The depth dose inside the phantom was determined using DOSXYZnrc, a Monte Carlo simulation software. The results were verified with measurements using TLD-100H. It was found that for 2.5 mm aluminium filtered 84-kVp X-rays, the radiation dose in the bone reached 57 % higher than the surface dose, i.e. 3.23 mGy as opposed to 2.06 mGy at the surface. The use of real bone introduces variations in the bone density in the DOSXYZnrc model, resulting in a lower attenuation effect than expected from solid bone tissues.
A retrospective analysis was performed in patients undergoing prospective ECG-triggered coronary computed tomography (CT) angiography (CCTA) with the single-source 64-slice CT (SSCT), dual-source 64-slice CT (DSCT), dual-source 128-slice CT and 320-slice CT with the aim of comparing the radiation dose associated with different CT generations. A total of 164 patients undergoing prospective ECG-triggered CCTA with different types of CT scanners were studied with the mean effective doses estimated at 6.8 ± 3.2, 4.2 ± 1.9, 4.1±0.6 and 3.8 ± 1.4 mSv corresponding to the 128-slice DSCT, 64-slice DSCT, 64-slice SSCT and 320-slice CT scanners. In this study a positive relationship was found between the effective dose and the body mass index (BMI). A low radiation dose is achieved in prospective ECG-triggered CCTA, regardless of the CT scanner generation. BMI is identified as the major factor that has a direct impact on the effective dose associated with prospective ECG-triggered CCTA.
Concentrations of primordial radionuclides in common construction materials collected from the south-west coastal region of India were determined using a high-purity germanium gamma-ray spectrometer. Average specific activities (Bq kg(-1)) for (238)U((226)Ra) in cement, brick, soil and stone samples were obtained as 54 ± 13, 21 ± 4, 50 ± 12 and 46 ± 8, respectively. Respective values of (232)Th were obtained as 65 ± 10, 21 ± 3, 58 ± 10 and 57 ± 12. Concentrations of (40)K radionuclide in cement, brick, soil and stone samples were found to be 440 ± 91, 290 ± 20, 380 ± 61 and 432 ± 64, respectively. To evaluate the radiological hazards, radium equivalent activity, various hazard indices, absorbed dose rate and annual effective dose have been calculated, and compared with the literature values. Obtained data could be used as reference information to assess any radiological contamination due to construction materials in future.
This study was conducted to investigate the effectiveness of dose-saving protocols in dual-source computed tomography (CT) coronary angiography compared with invasive coronary angiography (ICA). On 50 patients who underwent coronary CT angiography was performed dual-source CT (DSCT) and compared with ICA procedures. Entrance skin dose (ESD), which was measured at the thyroid gland, and effective dose (E) were assessed for both imaging modalities. The mean ESD measured at the thyroid gland was the highest at 120 kVp, followed by the 100 kVp DSCT and the ICA protocols with 4.0±1.8, 2.7±1.0 and 1.1±1.2 mGy, respectively. The mean E was estimated to be 10.3±2.1, 6.2±2.3 and 5.3±3.4 mSv corresponding to the 120-kVp, 100-kVp DSCT and ICA protocols, respectively. The application of 100 kVp in DSCT coronary angiography is feasible only in patients with a low body mass index of <25 kg m(-2), which leads to a significant dose reduction with the radiation dose being equivalent to that of ICA.
Measurements of (222)Rn activity concentration were carried out in 39 samples collected from the domestic and drinking water sources used in the island and mainland of Penang, northern peninsular, Malaysia. The measured activity concentrations ranged from 7.49 to 26.25 Bq l(-1), 0.49 to 9.72 Bq l(-1) and 0.58 to 2.54 Bq l(-1) in the raw, treated and bottled water samples collected, respectively. This indicated relatively high radon concentrations compared with that from other parts of the world, which still falls below the WHO recommended treatment level of 100 Bq l(-1). From this data, the age-dependent associated committed effective doses due to the ingestion of (222)Rn as a consequence of direct consumption of drinking water were calculated. The committed effective doses from (222)Rn resulting from 1 y's consumption of these water were estimated to range from 0.003 to 0.048, 0.001 to 0.018 and 0.002 to 0.023 mSv y(-1), for age groups 0-1, 2-16 and >16 y, respectively.
Planning and preparation in advance for radiological emergencies can help to minimise potential public health and environmental threats if and when an actual emergency occurs. During the planning process, emergency response organisations think through how they would respond to each type of incident and the resources that will be needed. In Malaysia, planning, preparation for and response to radiological emergencies involve many parties. In the event of a radiological emergency and if it is considered a disaster, the National Security Council, the Atomic Energy Licensing Board and the Malaysian Nuclear Agency (Nuclear Malaysia) will work together with other federal agencies, state and local governments, first responders and international organisations to monitor the situation, contain the release, and clean up the contaminated site. Throughout the response, these agencies use their protective action guidelines. This paper discusses Malaysian preparedness for, and response to, any potential radiological emergency.
As a laboratory certified to ISO 9001:2008 and accredited to ISO/IEC 17025, the Secondary Standard Dosimetry Laboratory (SSDL)-Nuclear Malaysia has incorporated an overall comprehensive system for technical and quality management in promoting a reliable individual monitoring service (IMS). Faster identification and resolution of issues regarding dosemeter preparation and issuing of reports, personnel enhancement, improved customer satisfaction and overall efficiency of laboratory activities are all results of the implementation of an effective quality system. Review of these measures and responses to observed trends provide continuous improvement of the system. By having these mechanisms, reliability of the IMS can be assured in the promotion of safe behaviour at all levels of the workforce utilising ionising radiation facilities. Upgradation of in the reporting program through a web-based e-SSDL marks a major improvement in Nuclear Malaysia's IMS reliability on the whole. The system is a vital step in providing a user friendly and effective occupational exposure evaluation program in the country. It provides a higher level of confidence in the results generated for occupational dose monitoring of the IMS, thus, enhances the status of the radiation protection framework of the country.
In Malaysia technologically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive materials (TENORM) wastes are mainly the product of the oil and gas industry and mineral processing. Among these TENORM wastes are tin tailing, tin slag, gypsum and oil sludge. Mineral processing and oil and gas industries produce large volume of TENORM wastes that has become a radiological concern to the authorities. A study was carried out to assess the radiological risk related to workers working at these disposal sites and landfills as well as to the members of the public should these areas be developed for future land use. Radiological risk was assessed based on the magnitude of radiation hazard, effective dose rates and excess cancer risks. Effective dose rates and excess cancer risks were estimated using RESRAD 6.4 computer code. All data on the activity concentrations of NORM in wastes and sludges used in this study were obtained from the Atomic Energy Licensing Board, Malaysia, and they were collected over a period of between 5 and 10 y. Results obtained showed that there was a wide range in the total activity concentrations (TAC) of nuclides in the TENORM wastes. With the exception of tin slag and tin tailing-based TENORM wastes, all other TENORM wastes have TAC values comparable to that of Malaysia's soil. Occupational Effective Dose Rates estimated in all landfill areas were lower than the 20 mSv y(-1) permissible dose limit. The average Excess Cancer Risk Coefficient was estimated to be 2.77×10(-3) risk per mSv. The effective dose rates for residents living on gypsum and oil sludge-based TENORM wastes landfills were estimated to be lower than the permissible dose limit for members of the public, and was also comparable to that of the average Malaysia's ordinary soils. The average excess cancer risk coefficient was estimated to be 3.19×10(-3) risk per mSv. Results obtained suggest that gypsum and oil sludge-based TENORM wastes should be exempted from any radiological regulatory control and should be considered radiologically safe for future land use.
Stratified sampling procedure was employed to collect a total of 40 samples; 2 from each stratum, measuring an approximate dimension of 3.25 km(2) of the actual sample site. Appropriate volumes were then evaporated and transferred into clean stainless steel planchets (ISO 9696 and ISO 9697). An eight channel gas-flow proportional counting system connected to a microprocessor loaded with a spreadsheet programme (Quarttro-Pro) and graphic programme (Multiplan) initially calibrated for efficiency was employed to count the background and the prepared samples. A mean efficiency of 33.44 and 41.24 % for the respective alpha and beta sources was obtained. A low background activity was also observed with a mean of 0.165 Bq for alpha and 1.119 Bq for beta. The gross alpha and beta activity concentrations in the water were found to range from 80 +/- 0.05 to 2300 +/- 0.41 Bq m(-3) and 120 +/- 0.08 to 4970 +/- 0.78 Bq m(-3), respectively. This clearly indicate areas of elevated alpha and beta activity concentrations of 37.5 and 47.5 %, respectively when compared with the International Commission for Radiological Protection (1991) maximum acceptable values of 500 Bq m(-3) for alpha and 1000 Bq m(-3) for beta.
The mass attenuation coefficients (mu/rho) of Rhizophora spp. were determined for photons in the energy range of 15.77-25.27 keV. This was carried out by studying the attenuation of X-ray fluorescent photons from zirconium, molybdenum, palladium, silver, indium and tin targets. The results were compared with theoretical values for average breast tissues in young-age, middle-age and old-age groups calculated using photon cross section database (XCOM), the well-known code for calculating attenuation coefficients and interaction cross-sections. The measured mass attenuation coefficients were found to be very close to the calculated XCOM values in breasts of young-age group.
During the years 1985-2008, the Secondary Standards Dosimetry Laboratory of Malaysia (SSDL Malaysia) has participated 37 times in the IAEA/WHO intercomparison programmes. This paper reports an analysis of the intercomparison data and demonstrates that the quality of the SSDL calibration service is well within the limits required by IAEA.
This study was undertaken to compare the entrance surface dose (ESD) and image quality of adult chest and abdominal X-ray examinations conducted at general practitioner (GP) clinics, and public and private hospitals in Malaysia. The surveyed facilities were randomly selected within a given category (28 GP clinics, 20 public hospitals and 15 private hospitals). Only departmental X-ray units were involved in the survey. Chest examinations were done at all facilities, while only hospitals performed abdominal examinations. This study used the x-ray attenuation phantoms and protocols developed for the Nationwide Evaluation of X-ray Trends (NEXT) survey program in the United States. The ESD was calculated from measurements of exposure and clinical geometry. An image quality test tool was used to evaluate the low-contrast detectability and high-contrast detail performance under typical clinical conditions. The median ESD value for the adult chest X-ray examination was the highest (0.25 mGy) at GP clinics, followed by private hospitals (0.22 mGy) and public hospitals (0.17 mGy). The median ESD for the adult abdominal X-ray examination at public hospitals (3.35 mGy) was higher than that for private hospitals (2.81 mGy). Results of image quality assessment for the chest X-ray examination show that all facility types have a similar median spatial resolution and low-contrast detectability. For the abdominal X-ray examination, public hospitals have a similar median spatial resolution but larger low-contrast detectability compared with private hospitals. The results of this survey clearly show that there is room for further improvement in performing chest and abdominal X-ray examinations in Malaysia.