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Radiation Safety


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X-Ray Units


Purchasing and Acquiring Radiation-Producing Equipment (top)

Any proposed purchase or acquisition and instillation of x-ray equipment or electron microscopes must be reviewed and approved in advance by the Radiation Safety Officer.

After instillation, a radiation survey of the equipment must be performed, and the unit must be registered with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. EHS will perform the survey and will handle the registration paperwork.

Training Requirements (top)

X-Ray safety training is scheduled on an as-needed basis. Contact the Radiation Safety Officer to schedule x-ray safety training.

For X-Ray Diffraction Equipment

Persons who have no previous x-ray diffraction experience and related radiation safety training are required to attend an x-ray safety training class offered by EHS before they first use x-ray equipment.

Persons who have previous x-ray diffraction experience and related radiation safety training are required to meet with the Radiation Safety Officer for a brief discussion of University x-ray safety requirements.

For Other X-Ray Equipment

There are specific training requirements for users of other x-ray equipment, including the Molecular Biology Department's Faxitron cabinet x-ray unit. Contact the Radiation Safety Officer to inquire about training for other types of x-ray equipment.

Radiation-Monitoring Badge Requirements (top)

State regulations require that anyone who uses x-ray diffraction equipment and most other types of x-ray equipment must wear radiation-monitoring badges. Contact EHS at 8-5294 to make arrangements to obtain monitoring badges.

Electron microscope users are not required to wear radiation-monitoring badges.

Guidelines for Use of X-Ray Diffraction Equipment (top)

Section 9 of the Radiation Safety Manual provides additional information about precautions and guidelines for the use of x-ray diffraction equipment.

Electron Microscopes (top)

Electron Microscopes rarely present a radiation hazard, although state regulations require that electron microscopes be registered and labeled as radiation-producing equipment, and radiation surveys must be performed. Because radiation leakage may develop when shielding in the column is improperly installed, state regulations require that radiation surveys must be performed for any newly installed or relocated microscope, when the microscope has been modified for special experiments, and following any service work in which the column has been opened. Contact EHS at 8-5294 to request radiation surveys.

Uranium, often used as uranyl acetate, may be used in a stain in some electron microscope procedures. Uranium is regulated somewhat differently than other radioactive materials and can be purchased directly by the user from a vendor. However, once uranium compounds are brought onto the Princeton University campus, the compounds fall within the scope of the University's NRC radioactive material license. Some degree of inventory control is required and waste materials must be disposed of as radioactive waste. Contact EHS when uranium compounds are acquired.

Additional information concerning electron microscopes and radiation safety is available at the following sites:

NJDEP Regulations (top)

Regulations concerning the use of radiation-producing equipment are available at the New Jersey Radiation Protection Rules & Regulations site.


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