United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Health Physics Questions and Answers - Question 76

Question 76: The Department of Energy (DOE) does not assign a 50-year dose commitment in the year of intake for its workers exposed to internally deposited radioactive material. The internal dose is assigned on an annual basis. Will commercial nuclear power plant licensees be required to assess internal 50-year dose commitment for workers coming from DOE facilities? Some radionuclides encountered at DOE facilities may be beyond the normal assessment methods of commercial nuclear power plants.

Answer: The statement that DOE does not assign a 50-year dose commitment in the year of intake is not correct. Although the DOE dose limits are applied to the dose actually received in a year, DOE facilities are required by DOE Order 5480.11 to generate and maintain individual occupational dose records that include "committed effective dose equivalent from intakes occurring during the year" and "committed dose equivalent to organ and tissue of concern from intakes occurring during the year." DOE Order 5480.11 also requires that records of exposure be made available to the worker upon request of the worker. See related Question 6. (References: 10 CFR 20.1204, DOE Order DOE 5480.11).

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, September 24, 2015