Accelerator Radiation Safety Newsletter



An Official Publication of the

Health Physics Society's Accelerator Section

Circulation: 465

First Quarter 2010 /
Volume 19, Number 1



The President's Message
Linnea Wahl

Another Health Physics Society midyear meeting has come and gone. This year’s meeting in Albuquerque was on the topic of risk communication, which is pertinent to all of us in radiation protection but in a year of tight funding, may not have seemed so to those who manage the travel budgets of accelerator health physicists. So it is understandable that representation by the Accelerator Section was sparse, and the section’s board of directors did not meet because we did not have a quorum present.


Against all odds, then, several section members did attend and presented papers at the Albuquerque meeting. These presentations are continuing proof of the wide range of challenges we face in our daily work. 

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The President Elect’s Message
Mike Grissom

This first quarter of 2010 has been very busy so I’m providing an index here for the subjects that are contained in this article:

·         The 2010 NCRP Annual Meeting

·         The 2010 HPS Annual Meeting and PDS

·         The 2010 Dade Moeller Lecture

The 2010 NCRP Annual Meeting: This year the 46th Annual Meeting of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) was held on March 8-9, 2010 at the Hyatt Regency Bethesda, Bethesda, Maryland. The meeting, on “Communication of Radiation Benefits and Risks in Decision Making,” was most interesting and despite the appearance of possible overlap with the 2010 HPS Midyear Meeting’s subject as noted in Linnea’s article in this newsletter, I was assured by a number of participants who had attended the Midyear that the topics were generally different and more focused at the NCRP meeting on the issue of risk communications as provided by scientific bodies and governmental agencies. Photographs from the meeting are available on the NCRP’s website for your review.

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In this issue

From the Officers
From the Correspondents
Other News

How to Subscribe
Newsletter Archives

Also of interest

Accelerator Section Website
HPS Website
Reflections on the 2008

Professional Development School
Purchase 2008 School Textbook


Linnea Wahl, Berkeley National Lab

Mike Grissom, Stanford Linear Accelerator, Retired

Past President:
Henry Kahnhauser, Brookhaven NationalLab

Mike Sandvig, Idaho National Lab

Marcia Torres, SLAC National Accelerator Lab

Newsletter Editor:
Keith Heinzelman, Livermore National Lab

Sam Baker, Argonne National Lab


Mike Duran, Los Alamos National Lab

Elsa Nimmo, University of California, Berkeley

Reg Ronningen, Michigan State University

Mike Singh, Livermore National Lab

Jack Topper, Livermore National Lab


Announcement: USPAS at MIT, June 2-4, 2010

The U.S. Particle Accelerator School is offering a program of graduate-level credit courses sponsored by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and held in Boston, MA from June 14-25, 2010.  
Participants can earn the MIT equivalent of 3 credits in only two weeks.  We will offer one undergraduate course and eleven specialized graduate-level courses.

Financial support is limited and will be awarded on a competitive basis.  To be considered for financial support you must submit four documents:  a completed application form, a cover letter explaining why the USPAS is important to your career, your CV and at least one letter of recommendation.

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Los Alamos Neutron Science Center (LANSCE) Accelerator:

International High Energy Neutron Dosimetry Inter-Comparison Experiment

Tom McLean RP-2

L. Scott Walker RP-1

LANSCE operational health physics and radiation measurements personnel, in concert with personnel from KEK, will conduct a high energy neutron dosimetry inter-comparison at the Weapons Neutron Research facility (WNR) 15 degree left flight path.  The neutron spectrum on the 15L flight path is very well characterized using time of flight measurements.  Characterized neutrons range in energy from 20 MeV to 800 MeV.

Personnel from other accelerators are invited to participate in the inter-comparison.  For further information, contact Scott Walker at or Tom McLean at



Report from the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory

Don Cossairt


Since our last report from Fermilab in May 2009, a major planned shutdown of 13 weeks duration was successfully carried out during the summer months. At Fermilab, as elsewhere, while major shutdowns afford the opportunity to make major improvements to the performance an accelerator they are also the periods when the most dose is received due to work on activated machine components. During this shutdown, numerous major and minor maintenance and improvement tasks were performed. A synopsis of the more significant tasks was provided by Gary Lauten of Fermilab’s Accelerator Division:


·         The 400 MeV momentum dump vacuum window was replaced. This task was performed at the high energy end of Fermilab’s 400 MeV linac injector. The exposure rates encountered were 10 R h-1 in a severely restricted work space. During the job planning, the estimated collective dose was 1.2 persom-rem while the actual result was 0.89 person-rem.

·         The target for the Neutrinos at the Main Injector (NuMI) beam was replaced. The exposure rates were 11 R h-1 at one foot. The  pre-job estimate of the collective dose was 0.36 person-rem while the actual result was 0.27 person-rem.



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