Radiation Dosimetry

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Personnel dosimeters (whole body badges and ring badges) are issued to individuals based on the potential amount of radiation exposure, as indicated on the Principal Investigator's approved written protocol.

General Rules for Personnel Dosimeter Use

  • Wear your body dosimeter (badge) between the waist and neck level. If, however, one area of the body is more likely to be exposed than the rest, the dosimeter should be worn in that area. For example, when using P-32, the badge should be worn on or near the collar to measure potential eye dose.
  • For x-ray use, wear on the outside of your lead apron.
  • Wear your ring badge (if issued) on the inside of your protective gloves, with the label turned to the inside of your hand. Double glove your badged hand to prevent ripping of the plastic glove from the ring badge.
  • Clip the dosimeter to your clothing so that the front of the badge stays upright and away from your body. Never allow clothing such as lapels, neck ties, buttons, or other items to shield the front of the dosimeter.
  • A badge must be worn ONLY BY THE PERSON TO WHOM IT IS ISSUED.
  • Badges are changed on a quarterly basis. Always wear the most current one.
  • Badges should be protected against damage by heat, moisture, or pressure.
  • Badges must not be worn during non-occupational exposure, such as during treatments with medical and dental X-rays.
  • When not in use, badges should be stored on the rack provided by EH&S.
  • EH&S should be notified whenever an individual's personnel dosimeter is no longer needed.
  • Review the Radiation Exposure Report (provided to you at the time badges are changed) to monitor any exposure you may have received.
Using Dosimeters

Personnel dosimeters cannot detect low energy beta particles, such as those emitted from Hydrogen-3, Carbon-14 and Sulfur-35. Personnel using such isotopes do not need dosimeters.

External Radiation Exposure Limits for Occupational Workers

Age 18 years or over

  • Whole Body (head and trunk, arms above the elbow, legs above the knee):  5,000 millirem/year
  • Lens of the Eye:  15,000 millirem/year
  • Skin of the Whole Body:  50,000 millirem/year
  • Extremities (hand, elbow, arm below the elbow, foot, knee and leg below the knee):  50,000 millirem/year

Declared Pregnant Worker

Embryo/Fetus of a Declared Pregnant Worker:  500 millirem for entire pregnancy. For more information on radiation exposure and pregnancy, download:  

Contact an Expert

head shot of Jeffrey Slawson Radiation Safety Officer.

Jeffrey Slawson, CHP

Radiation Safety Officer

Environment, Health & Safety

Phone: 716-829-5823

Email: jslawson@buffalo.edu