Explained: rad, rem, sieverts, becquerels

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Sometimes it must seem as though reports on releases of radioactive materials from Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear powerplant in the wake of the devastating earthquake and tsunami are going out of their way to confuse people. Some reports talk about millisieverts while others talk about rem or becquerels, when what most people really want to […]

Investigators identify genes that contribute to radiation resistance

“The research has revealed new pathways of cellular self-repair, including DNA pathways that in humans that may help protect us from cancer,” says corresponding author Michael M. Cox. High doses of radiation are deadly not only to humans, plants, and animals, but to microbial cells generally. Nonetheless, certain bacteria, notably Deinococcus radiodurans, are highly resistant […]

Is EPA About to Relax Radiation Protections from Nuclear Power?

Both proponents and opponents of nuclear power expect the Environmental Protection Agency in coming months to relax its rules restricting radiation emissions from reactors and other nuclear facilities. EPA officials say they have no such intention, but they are willing to reconsider the method they use to limit public exposure—and the public’s level of risk. […]

Radiation Spill Now Believed to be Deliberate Attack On Employees

UC Riverside police say they believe what officials initially characterized as a spill of low-level radioactive material in April was actually an attack on employees in the genomics lab. Police are still looking for a suspect, as well as someone who posted comments on a Press-Enterprise story about the contamination of a lab who seemed […]

Were Being Exposed To More Radiation

Where Your Radiation Dose Comes From IF YOU THOUGHT that the greatest radiation threat to you was Sellafield or nuclear power stations abroad, you’d be wrong.  Radon is far more of a risk to people in Ireland. The Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII) said that less than 1 per cent of the average radiation […]

Upgrade for Europe’s big X-ray light source

The improvements to the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) will cost some 150m euros (£120m) and take until 2022 to complete fully. ESRF is essentially a giant X-ray machine, capable of determining the structure of objects and materials at the atomic and molecular scale. The 850m accelerator ring used to prime these bright X-rays will […]

Cosmic Rays, Neutrons And The Mutation Rate In Evolution

When cosmic rays hit the upper atmosphere, they send high-energy particles, such as neutrons, showering down towards the surface. So an interesting question is how these neutrons influence things on the ground. Researchers have long known that high-energy neutrons can smash into atomic nuclei causing all kinds of damage to the structure of materials. This […]

Raising the EPA Radiation Limit Will Save Thousands of Lives and Billions of Dollars

The EPA is raising the radiation threat level by a factor of 350. That may sound unbelievable but it is assuredly a good thing: The previous limits were far lower than science justified and caused hundreds of billions of dollars of economic loss to America and the world. The trigger for the change was the […]

Radiation leak leads to layoffs at Los Alamos

The Los Alamos contractor that packaged the radioactive waste linked to a leak at the government’s nuclear waste dump is laying off workers. A Los Alamos spokesman Wednesday confirmed that Energy Solutions has reduced its workforce by 115 because its contract for packing the waste for shipment to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad […]

Energy Department to clean nuclear accident site

Workers are preparing to enter one of the most dangerous rooms on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation — the site of a 1976 blast that exposed a technician to a massive dose of radiation, which led to him being nicknamed the “Atomic Man.” Harold McCluskey, then 64, was working in the room when a chemical reaction […]

Iran Successfully Holds Radiation Defense Exercise

Iran has successfully staged preparatory drills in the central province of Isfahan to boost civil defense capabilities in case of nuclear contingencies, such as radiation leaks, said head of Iran’s Civil Defense Organization said. printPrint Speaking to the Tasnim News Agency in Isfahan on Wednesday, Brigadier General Gholam Reza Jalali explained that the exercises covered […]

Ways to reduce radiation

DESPITE HEALTH CANADA telling citizens that there is nothing to worry about following the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the lasting effects of exposure to that radioactive material still aren’t known. But there are many other sources of radiation that people encounter on a regular basis and whose potentially harmful impact on our health is too often […]

Nuke leak probe focuses on Los Alamos National Lab

A state regulator says officials investigating a radiation leak from the government’s underground nuclear waste dump in southeastern New Mexico have turned their focus to Los Alamos National Laboratory. New Mexico Environment Department General Counsel Jeff Kendall said Thursday that the Department of Energy’s accident investigation team has been at the lab in northeastern New […]

Lab Impex Purchased by Ultra Electronics PLC

Poole-based Lab Impex Systems Ltd has been taken over by Ultra Electronics PLC in a cash deal. Lab Impex, based at Harwell Road, Canford Heath, designs, manufactures and supplies radiation measuring instru-ments, systems and services for the nuclear, medical and defence industries. Its instruments are mainly used in the field of health physics, to monitor […]

Radiation a concern for coastal communities

Talk in the Oregon Coast town of Bandon often turns to the approaching plume of seaborne radiation from Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant. “We’ve been worried about it and worried about it,” said Zac Adams, owner of Bandon Designs construction company. “We’re really concerned about it affecting the fisheries, the wildlife, the tourism and […]