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Radiation

Radiation Safety

The guiding principle governing the use of radionuclides is that exposure of the user or other persons to radiation doses should be As Low As Reasonably Practicable (ALARP). In addition all work giving rise to radioactive wastes must comply with the guiding principle of Best Available Technology (BAT) of disposal. The key working instructions from these regulations are covered in the Local Rules.

The management of the use of radioactive substances is governed by law and is ‘policed’ by the Environment Agency which has considerable power including the power to shut down all work in the University. They have already prosecuted Departments in the University on two occasions.

Equally any aspect of misuse that leads to a risk to Health and Safety falls within the jurisdiction of the HSE.

Work with radioisotopes in the department is governed by the Local Rules for Radiation Safety which must be strictly observed. Each new user must register with the RPS when they will be issued with a copy of Local Rules. The following are mandatory:

  • Radioactive material can only be ordered and received by the Radiation Protection Supervisor (RPS).
  • Under no circumstances may radioactive material be introduced or removed from the building without the prior written agreement of the RPS.
  • Only staff with authorization may sign for receipt of radioactive material.


There is a Radiation spillage kit located near the First Aid Room on Level 4. In the event of a spillage you must inform an RPS.

You must always wear a Lab coat, glasses and gloves when handling radioactive material.

If you wish to register to use radioactivity you must complete this form and attend a new users course.