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Refresher course 1C

The application of the ICRP system to NORM in industrial processes: from Pub 103 to Pub 142

Analia Canoba (Autoridad Regulatoria Nuclear of Argentina –ARN-, Argentina: member ICRP Committee 4 & TG 98) and Jean-Francois Lecomte (Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety –IRSN-, France: member ICRP Committee 4 & TG 76)

Learning objectives of the refresher course:

  • Participants will be reminded with some basics of the ICRP system of radiological protection, how it is built, its evolution to take into account the diverse exposure situations including NORM exposure, its structuration and the application of the fundamental principles for the protection of the workers, the public and the environment.
  • Participants will also learn about the importance and the rationale of a graded approach taking into account the characteristics of the exposure situations in applying the system of radiological protection.
  • In particular, the participants will be made aware of key characteristics of exposure to NORM in industrial processes, which are often multi-hazards industries where the radiological risk is not necessarily dominant and where there is no real prospect of emergency leading to tissue reaction or immediate danger of life.
  • Such characteristics allow for an integrated and graded approach for the radiological protection in industries involving NORM mainly based on the justification and optimisation principles. Participants will learn on how these principles should be applied in the implementation of protective actions and how protection can be achieved while not imposing unnecessary burdens.

The aim of the refresher course is to provide participants an overview of the application of the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) system of protection (set in Publication 103, 2007) in the specific case of exposure from Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORM) in industrial processes, which is the subject of the recently issued Publication 142 (2019).

In the first part of the course, the participants will be provided with an historical perspective of the evolution of the system of radiological protection, explaining the gradual taking into account of the diverse types of exposure situations and the progressive building of a unified although nuanced approach for all of them on the basis of the ethical and social values as well as on the feedback experience from the practical implementation of recommendations. The system of protection established in Publication 103 will be presented: exposure situations, categories of exposure and radiation protection principles.

In the second part of the course, it will be explained why the radiological protection in industries involving NORM needs to be implemented using an integrated and graded approach and how this approach should be applied from a practical point of view.

The course will notably address:

  • Characteristics of industries involving NORM;
  • NORM and exposure situations;
  • Application of the radiological protection principles to NORM exposure;
  • Protection of the workers, the public and the environment against NORM exposure;
  • Radon exposure in industries involved with NORM.

List of recommended (pre)reading literature:

  1. ICRP Publication 103, Volume 37 N°. 2-4, 2007, Recommendations of the International Commission of Radiological Protection.
  2. ICRP Publication 142, Volume 48 N°. 4, 2019, Radiological Protection from Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM) in Industrial Processes.
  3. ICRP Publication 126, Volume 43 No. 3 2014, Radiological Protection against Radon Exposure.
  4. ICRP Proceedings of the Fifth International Symposium on the System of Radiological Protection, Volume 49, N°. S1, 2020, p. 84-97, ICRP approach for radiological protection from NORM in industrial processes.