An Examination Of The Relationship Between WLM Exposure And Dose

Johnson, J. R. ; Leach, V. A.
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 8
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1981
The calculation of the dose to the bronchial epithelium, lungs and other body tissues from exposures to airborne radon and thoron daughters requires a knowledge of the pattern of deposition in the respiratory system and clearance from it. Exposure to radon or thoron daughters is measured in units of Working Level Months (WLM), which is independent of the aerosol particle size, the fraction of daughters that are attached to the aerosol and the degree of disequilibria between the daughters, and age and breathing rate of the subject. These factors will influence the deposition and clearance, and hence dose. It is therefore of interest to find the relationship between WLM and calculated dose as a function of aerosol size, unattached fraction, and disequilibria, and of age and breathing rate, and to define ranges for these parameters for which WLM is an acceptable measure of the risk. This presentation briefly reviews the two dosimetry models being considered by a current Nuclear Energy Agency (OECD) Working Group, and using these models, defines limits on parameters for which the WLM is applicable.
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