United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Occupational Radiation Exposure at Commercial Nuclear Power Reactors and Other Facilities 2013: Forty-Sixth Annual Report (NUREG-0713, Volume 35)

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: April 2015
Date Published: December 2015

Prepared by:
L.A. Benevides
T.A. Brock
D.A. Hagemeyer*
Y.U. McCormick*

*ORAU
1299 Bethel Valley Road, SC-200, MS-21
Oak Ridge, TN 37830

Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001

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Abstract

This report summarizes the occupational exposure data that are maintained in the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Radiation Exposure Information and Reporting System (REIRS) database. The bulk of the information contained in this report was compiled from the 2013 annual reports submitted by five of the seven categories1 of NRC licensees subject to the reporting requirements of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) 20.2206, "Reports of Individual Monitoring." Because there are no geologic repositories for high-level waste currently licensed and no NRC-licensed low-level waste disposal facilities currently in operation, only five categories are considered in this report. The annual reports submitted by these licensees consist of radiation exposure records for each monitored individual. These records are analyzed for trends and presented in this report in terms of collective dose and the distribution of dose among the monitored individuals.

Annual reports for 2013 were received from a total of 189 NRC licensees from the five categories described above. The summation of reports submitted by the 189 licensees indicated that 184,907 individuals were monitored, 74,054 of whom received a measurable dose (Table 3.1). When adjusted for transient individuals, there were actually 135,681 unique individuals that were monitored, 57,115 of whom received a measurable dose (see Section 5).

The collective dose incurred by these individuals was 8,747 person-rems (87,470 person-millisieverts [mSv]), which represents a 13 percent decrease from the 2012 value. This decrease was primarily due to a 16 percent decrease in the collective dose for commercial nuclear power reactor licensees (operating commercial nuclear power reactors decreased from 104 to 100) and a decrease in the collective dose for fuel fabrication licensees (fuel fabrication licensees decreased from 9 to 8). The number of individuals receiving a measurable dose decreased by 14 percent from the 2012 value. When adjusted for transients, the average measurable dose of 0.15 rem (1.5 mSv) for 2013 is a 6 percent decrease from the 2012 value. The average measurable dose is defined as the total effective dose equivalent (TEDE) divided by the number of individuals receiving a measurable dose.

In calendar year 2013, the average annual collective dose per reactor for light-water reactor (LWR) licensees was 68 person-rems (680 person-mSv). This represents a 12 percent decrease from the value reported for 2012 (77 person-rems) (770 person-mSv). The total outage hours at commercial nuclear power plants decreased by 15 percent from 2012 to 2013 [Ref. 1], and there was a significant decrease in collective dose for this licensee category. It is important to note that, for the first time in 15 years, there were fewer than 104 operating commercial nuclear power plants reporting. Four pressurized-water reactor nuclear plants shut down during 2013 (Crystal River, Kewaunee, and San Onofre 2 and 3) and are not included in this analysis. The average annual collective dose per reactor was 127 person-rems (1,270 person-mSv) for 35 for boiling-water reactors and 35 person-rems (350 person-mSv) for 65 pressurized-water reactors.

There were 29,683 individuals that were monitored at two or more licensees during the monitoring year. The assessment of the average measurable dose per individual is adjusted each year to account for the reporting of a measurable dose for transient individuals by multiple licensees. The adjustment to account for transient individuals has been specifically noted in footnotes in the figures and tables for commercial nuclear power reactors.


1Commercial nuclear power reactors and test reactor facilities; industrial radiographers; fuel processors (including uranium enrichment facilities), fabricators, and reprocessors; manufacturing and distribution of byproduct material; independent spent fuel storage installations; facilities for land disposal of low-level waste; and geologic repositories for high-level waste. There are currently no NRC licensees involved in low-level waste disposal or geologic repositories for high-level waste.

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