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Ionising radiation

Environmental Radioactivity - Medicine - Occupational Radiation Protection - Nuclear Hazards Defence

Ionisierende Strahlung

BfS Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring

The Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection is responsible for

  • the quality assurance of monitoring methods,
  • the standardisation and harmonisation of analytical, measurement and interpretation procedures,
  • awarding research and development work (UFOPLAN projects),
  • advising and
  • reporting.

In addition, the Office is integrated into the radiological emergency management.

Organisational chart Organisational chart of the BfS Coordinating Office on Incorporation MonitoringOrganisational chart of the BfS Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring

For realising the tasks as Coordinating Office the office has its own in vivo and in vitro measurement facilities (see organisational chart). Furthermore, it is in contact with various national, international and supranational institutions.

Quality assurance of monitoring methods

In the scope of the quality assurance of methods for monitoring the uptake of radionuclides by the body, the Coordinating Office

  • implements quality assurance measures according to Section 41 (8) Radiation Protection Ordinance (StrlSchV)
  • performs regularly in vivo and in vitro interlaboratory comparisons,
  • evaluates quality assurance measures and
  • develops quality assurance concepts.

Individual to be measured in a whole body counter Whole body counter BerlinWhole body counter of the BfS at the Berlin location; two germanium detectors (above and below the scanning bed) are scanning the individual to be measured in order to detect possible incorporation.

Furthermore, the BfS Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring provides assistance to dosimetry services with internal quality assurance, for example through lending calibration phantoms.

Harmonisation of analytical, measurement and interpretation procedures

In order to standardise analytical, measurement and dose calculation procedures and to make them comparable, the Coordinating Office

  • evaluates existing analytical, measurement and interpretation procedures and
  • recommends individual procedures, for example as part of measurement instructions and guidelines.

For this purpose, the BfS Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring is either represented in or in contact with relevant national, international and supranational institutions such as

  • German Institute for Standardization (DIN),
  • Working Group Incorporation Monitoring (AKI),
  • International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP),
  • International Organization for Standardization (ISO),
  • International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Whole body counter Whole body counter NeuherbergWhole body counter in Neuherberg: the individual to be measured is examined for possible incorporation with four electrically cooled germanium detectors.

Advising

The BfS is a higher federal authority within the portfolio of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) and - as a specialist authority - has appropriate expertise on radiation protection issues among other things.

For this reason, the BfS Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring advises Federal and Länder (federal states) institutions and the population as well on all issues that may arise, for example, when radionuclides enter the body through inhalation, ingestion, the skin or open wounds. Within the scope of this advisory task the Office

  • evaluates monitoring data and issues technical or expert statements concerning the matter,
  • provides technical support to the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU),
  • advises Federal and Länder (federal states) institutions; gives technical advice especially to supervisory authorities and officially approved laboratories for incorporation monitoring and
  • answers queries from the public and also examines individuals in the measurement facilities of the Coordinating Office in justified cases.

Reporting

The BfS Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring determines the internal radiation exposure from artificial radioactive substances in the environment either through measuring reference groups of the population or, as the case may be, by including measurement results from other dosimetry services in Germany. Starting from the 1960s (at that time the Office was still part of the German Federal Health Office (BGA)) the incorporation of radionuclides resulting from the fallout from atmospheric nuclear weapons tests has been documented through continual whole body measurements and intensified since the Chernobyl accident in 1986. The Coordinating Office

  • reports to the BMU and
  • informs the European Union (EU)

about the measurements.

The results are published in the annual reports of the BMU on environmental radioactivity and radiation exposure and are forwarded to the competent EU authorities.

Radiological emergency management

Owing to the experience gained from the "Litvinenko" polonium-210 poisoning case (see BfS annual report 2007, pages 38-41), radiological emergency management has been added to the range of duties already being carried out by the Coordinating Office. As part of these duties, the Coordinating Office

  • aligns the analysis, metrology and dosimetry capacities of the officially appointed laboratories in Germany,
  • provides information and advice to authorities and the public,
  • has in vivo measurement facilities and specific in vitro analysis and measurement methods available,
  • determines and evaluates the internal dose for affected individuals in the event of an incident.

After the reactor accident in the Japanese nuclear power plant Fukushima Dai-ichi in March 2011, the Coordinating Office on Incorporation Monitoring examined numerous individuals arriving from Japan at their own request in the Office's measurement facilities. The data gathered nationwide were aggregated and made available to other authorities and to the public (see environmental radioactivity and radiation exposure: annual report 2011, p. 117 f.).

State of 2018.11.21

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