Our frequently asked questions
You have questions about radiation?
Perhaps the question about radiation you have is already answered here?
It is unclear for many companies what the legal obligations are for the use of ionizing radiation in forms such as X-rays or radiation from radioactivity.
Since many questions come up repeatedly and because on this website we would also like to explain about our services, you will find our frequently asked questions here. If the answer is not listed, you can always leave your question via the contact form.
What does a radiation permit application consist of?
In the case where NOXX radiation safety services applies for a permit in the name of your company, we carry out the entire application from start to finish for you. We start by drawing up the necessary reports, such as the risk analysis and the environmental analysis. In addition, a large number of appendices must be drawn up and sent with a permit application, such as:
- Letters of appointment from the radiation protection expert and the radiation protection officer
- Copies of diplomas of experts associated with the organization
- Permit authorization form
- Examples of protocols, procedures and work instructions
- Extracts from the Chamber of Commerce and the Land Registry
- Construction drawings and situation sketches
- Measurement reports or reports of performance and acceptance tests.
We then write out the complete permit application and substantiate the justification and legalities for your type use of radiationd. Together with all appendices, this forms a package of documents that is submitted digitally to the Autoriteit Nucleaire Veiligheid en Stralingsbescherming. A round of in-depth questions usually follows within eight weeks of submission, which we will of course handle in a similar manner. Experience shows that the permit is issued within a few weeks. However, this period varies by application and documentation submitted. Unfortunately, a guarantee for this cannot be given in advance. Of course we do our utmost to ensure that the permit application process runs as quickly and smoothly as possible.
What is a risk analysis?
Article 5 of the Dutch “Arbeidsomstandighedenwet” (Working Conditions Act) obliges companies to carry out a risk analysis (RI&E). The Basic Safety Standards for Radiation Protection Decree states that an additional risk analysis must be carried out when ionizing radiation (such as X-rays or gamma rays) is used. The way in which this analysis must be carried out is stated in the “Regeling stralingsbescherming beroepsmatige blootstelling 2018”. In the additional risk analysis with regard to the use of radiation, the potential annual dose that the employee can absorb as a result of the work that he performs with the source of radiation is calculated per type of employee. These calculations are custom made and differ per situation. The exposure of an employee who works part-time with a baggage scanner is different from that of an employee who performs pacemaker surgeries under X-ray fluoroscopy for 4 days a week. Furthermore, the analysis takes into account the dose that someone can absorb if the work does not go as planned: the so-called foreseen unintended events. This together gives, in a somewhat complicated calculation, the effective annual dose that an employee absorbs as a result of his work in the company. Based on the calculated dose, the worker is classified as:
- Exposed worker category A
- Exposed worker category B
- Non-exposed worker
There are specific obligations for each category, such as wearing dosimeters or having themselves inspected annually. Furthermore, the room where the source is used is additionally specified into a zone (monitored zone or controlled zone). When we carry out the risk inventory and evaluation, all calculations are performed according to a predefined step-by-step plan and clearly written out in a report. The report contains a clear conclusion and can serve as a (mandatory) part of a permit application.
What is an environmental analysis?
The environmental analysis calculates how much ’emission’ of ionizing radiation your application causes to the outside environment. In the case of flushing out radioactive substances, this exposure is very clear. Nevertheless, there is also a certain dose of radiation emitted to the environment in other types of applications. For this, the so-called ‘site boundary dose’ which is caused by the source of radiation, must be calculated. This dose is calculated using an established method and is processed into a report together with site drawings and drawings of the building or complex. When we carry out the environmental analysis, all calculations are performed according to a pre-established step-by-step plan and clearly written out in a report. The report contains a clear conclusion and can serve as a (mandatory) part of a permit application.
How long does it take to obtain a radiation permit?
The minimum duration of a permit application (or registration or notification) is 8 weeks from the time of submission of all documents. These 8 weeks are the statutory decision period. However, this does not mean that a permit will also be granted after the 8 weeks. The Autoriteit Nucleaire Veiligheid en Stralingsbescherming (ANVS) reserves the right to ask additional questions. This option is usually used. As a result, the duration of a permit application often approaches 14 weeks from the moment of submission. Please note that NOXX radiation safety services needs a few weeks to prepare the documentation that accompanies an application for a permit. An application for a permit often consists of a written application and several dozen appendices. So contact us in time!
What is an annual radiation safety subscription?
With an annual radiation safety subscription, NOXX radiation safety services commit themselves to your organization. We act for your organization as a radiation protection expert (formerly: coordinating expert). When your organization is contacted by a government service in the context of radiation safety or legislation and regulations, we will take over this contact from your organization. We handle the communication for you and, where necessary, we supervise any inspection visit. Activities that are regularly performed under an annual radiation safety subscription are: supervising the RPO, optimizing the use of the source, conducting annual interviews with the employees involved with radiation and making changes to the permit. An annual radiation safety subscription is concluded on the basis of a predetermined number of hours. During the number of those hours, you can contact our radiation expert without limitation with your questions and requests for advice.
What is an acceptance test?
An acceptance test is a test that is performed after a permit has been issued, but before the source of radiation is put into use. The purpose of the acceptance test is to test whether the source of radiation is safe to use. This usually also includes checking whether the supplier has fulfilled its obligations and whether the geormetry of use of the radiation source is functioning correctly. An acceptance test is performed by or under the responsibility of the radiation protection expert that is associated with the organisation. A separate role is reserved for the acceptance test of medical radiological X-ray equipment. Such devices are used for research on humans to perform medical diagnostics. Because X-rays have a tumor-indicating capacity, ie “radiation can cause cancer”, the acceptance tests on X-ray equipment are usually quite extensive. Following guidelines from the IRCP, NRCP, IEC and various European and national organizations, the following parameters are tested: Dose: tube voltage, tube load, tube current, dose rate, leakage radiation, rntry dose on the patient, absorbed dose, accuracy, precision, reproducibility, half value layer, diagnostic reference levels Image quality: spatial resolution, contrast resolution, geometry General (use) quality: distortion, correspondence of X-ray fiel and light , operation of AEC, electrical safety, radiation safety, scatter grid All measured values are processed in an extensive report. The values are compared with the international standard or the guideline. If the measured value falls outside the specifications or the permissible, we will look for a solution together with the entrepreneur and the supplier of the device. We don’t just reject a device, we also help solve the problem.
What are zone measurements?
In a zone measurement report, sensitive measuring equipment is used outside the room where the X-ray machine or radioactive source is used. Based on these measurements, the potential annual dose outside the room is calculated. This dose must be below certain values, depending on the type of building or institution. The theoretical calculations from the site boundary calculations are also checked using the zone measurements.
What is a KEW-dossier?
The law states that all records concerning the use of ionizing radiation in the company must be kept in a so-called management system, the KEW-dossier. The letters KEW stand for the Dutch nuclear law, names the Kernenergiewet. In the KEW-dossier, all matters related to the use of radiation are recorded in one system:
- Company details (construction drawings, official documents)
- Dose reports
- Letters of appointment, expertise of personnell and training programs
- Control reports (maintenance, performance testing, acceptance testing)
- Annual Reports
- Risk analysis
- Environmental analysis
- Incident reports
When a permit is requested by NOXX radiation safety services, we usually connect you to a cloud-based solution that allows the storage of the KEW-dossier in a secure manner. In this way, both the company and the radiation expert always have access to the same dossier. This is very useful when there is file sharing between several people.
What is a shielding calculation?
Exposure to ionizing radiation can be harmful to your health. To avoid damage to health of people that live nearby, of people that visit your institute and your personnell, rooms in which ionizing radiation is used are being provided with additional radiation shielding material. These materials are usually, lead, concrete, stone or other materials that shield against radiation. The amount of these materials needed to make the area around the room safe depends on many factors, such as the energy of the radiation, the geometry of the room, the amount of radiation produced and the usage of the rooms next to the room where the radiation is produced. To calculate the amounts of materials needed a shielding calculation is performed. In this calculation the guidelines and calculation rules from insitutes such as the IRCP, NRCP and the NCS are followed. Submitting a shielding calculation is generally part of the permit request with the Dutch radiation safety autoroties (ANVS).