Radiation Protection Glossary

A radiation protection glossary for Radiation Protection Supervisors (RPS) and anyone interesting in radiation safety terminology. The glossary is a mixture of health physics terms, and phrases related to radiation legislation, transport, practical safety and similar.

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Scintillation


With respect to Radiation Protection, scintillation is the process where by a material will emit light Photons when exposed to Ionising Radiation. The light photons can be measured with a photo-multiplier tube which will multiply the events to produce an electrical signal or pulse. The pulse can be counted to give an indication of the magnitude of the incoming radiation. Materials that have scintillation properties include Zinc Sulphide (used in many Alpha emission detectors), Sodium Iodide (used in many X-Rays / Gamma emitter surveying probes), and scintillant cocktails (used in Liquid Scintillation Counting).

Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less

– Marie Curie