BARC activities for Environmental Surveillance and Radiation Protection
In recent years, environmental issues are playing an increasing role in the consideration of options available for energy production. In the context of nuclear power, environmental protection and public safety are inextricably linked to the setting up, operation and decommissioning of the entire fuel cycle facilities. Broadly speaking, these pertain to the protection of occupational workers, general public and the environment at large. In the occupational domain, radiation exposures to workers need to be controlled, so as to meet the rigorous standards stipulated by regulatory agencies.
This is achieved both at the level of design and at the level of operation by comprehensive research, development and application studies on
- Environmental impact and dose / risk assessment for radiological and chemical contaminants
- Environmental surveillance and radiation protection for the entire nuclear fuel cycle facilities
- Meteorological and hydro-geological investigations for DAE sites
- Modelling of contaminant transport and dispersion in the atmosphere and hydrosphere
- Radiological impact assessment of waste management and disposal practices
- Development of Environmental Radiation Monitoring systems
- Establishment of country wide radiation monitoring network, Establishment of benchmarks for assessing the radiological impact of the nuclear power activities on the marine environment.
Several programmes have been initiated towards individual and environmental monitoring, radiation safety and dosimetry in medical applications of radiation. Personnel monitoring services to all DAE units and support to the regulatory authorities in assessment of genuineness of dose for overexposure situations is also provided. Several training and certification courses in radiological physics and safety are being conducted on a regular basis.
CORE RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT AREAS
- Development of stand-alone environmental radiation monitors and establishment of countrywide monitoring network with online data communication
- Under the IERMON (Indian Environmental Radiation Monitoring Network) program, more than 500 environmental radiation monitoring systems across the country have been established
- Development of software and impact assessment methodologies for strengthening nuclear and radiological emergency preparedness at the National level.
- Environmental safety surveillance, radiation protection and industrial hygiene surveillance in all the operating units of the nuclear fuel cycle
- Environmental monitoring and radiological impact assessment at different DAE sites
- Development of methodologies for determination of radionuclides present at very low levels in various environmental matrices
- Monitoring of background levels of gamma radiation at locations other than DAE sites across the country