Organ and detriment-weighted dose rate coefficients for exposure to radionuclide-contaminated soil considering body morphometries that differ from reference conditions: adults and children Academic Article uri icon


  • The system of protection established by the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) provides a robust framework for ionizing radiation exposure justification, optimization, and dose limitation. The system is built upon fundamental concepts of a reference person, defined in ICRP Publication 89, and the radiation protection quantity effective dose, defined in ICRP Publication 103. For external exposures to radionuclide-contaminated soil, values of the organ dose rate coefficient (Gy/s per Bq/m2) and effective dose rate coefficient (Sv/s per Bq/m2) have been computed by several authors and national laboratories using ICRP-compliant reference phantoms-both stylized and voxelized. These coefficients are of great value in post-accident exposure assessments as seen in Japan following the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station disaster. Questions arise, however, among the general public regarding the accuracy of organ and effective dose estimates based upon reference phantom methodologies, especially for those individuals with height and/or total body mass that differ modestly or even substantially from the nearest age-matched reference person. In this pilot study, this issue is explored through use of the extended 351-member UF/NCI hybrid phantom library in which values of organ and detriment-weighted dose rate coefficients are computed for sex/height/mass-specific phantoms, and systematically compared to their values of the effective dose rate coefficient computed using corresponding reference phantoms. Results are given for monoenergetic photons, and then for some 33 different radionuclides, with all dose rate coefficient data provided in a series of electronic annexes. For environmentally relevant radionuclides such as 89Sr, 90Sr, 137Cs, and 131I, percent differences between the detriment-weighted dose rate coefficient computed using non-reference and the effective dose rate coefficient computed using reference phantoms vary only ± 5% for young children approximated by the reference 1-year-old phantom. With increased body size and age, the range of percent differences in these two quantities increases to + 7% to - 14% for the reference 5-year-old, to + 10% to - 27% for the reference 10-year-old, to + 33% to - 31% for the reference 15-year-old, and to + 15% to - 40% for male and female adults.

author list (cited authors)

  • Kofler, C., Domal, S., Satoh, D., Dewji, S., Eckerman, K., & Bolch, W. E.

citation count

  • 3

publication date

  • September 2019