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Environ Monit Assess. 2012 Sep;184(9):5663-7. doi: 10.1007/s10661-011-2370-6. Epub 2011 Sep 14.

Radium equivalent activity in the light of UNSCEAR report.

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Pakistan Institute of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Nilore, Islamabad, Pakistan.


Radium equivalent activity (Ra ( eq )) has been in practice for the last 40 years for the assessment of radiological hazard of radioactivity in environmental materials. The in-practice model for the calculation of the Ra ( eq ) has been critically reviewed in the light of the UNSCEAR 2000 report. Annual effective dose (E) values of (232)Th and (40)K were found to be not equal to that of (226)Ra derived from the activity concentrations of these radionuclides used in the expression for the Ra ( eq ). Therefore, a modified model has been proposed for the determination of the Ra ( eq ) for outdoor external exposure to gamma rays. The relation between the E and Ra ( eq ) has been explored. It is recommended that while describing the radiological hazard of the materials containing radioactivity, there should be no need to calculate the Ra ( eq ) if the E has already been determined or vice versa.

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