View Full Version : Cosmic radiation

27th May 2004, 16:41
Anybody interested in calculating cosmic radiation during a flight check this site:



Result comes in microSievert. As far as I know, maximum for
a worker in a nuclear power plant is 20 milliSievert a year or
400 milliSievert during a lifetime.
Watch your altitude around the poles !

27th May 2004, 17:55
Once head a CAA ops inspector questioning a chief pilot about what the company did regarding pilot cosmic radiation exposure. His reply was " oh its OK we aren't allowed to carry dangerous goods" !!!!:confused:

27th May 2004, 18:39
Just getting ready to operate from East Coast USA back to London. The results make interesting reading - Planned level 390 give 33 microSieverts but 360 reduces this to 28.

As I am scheduled to cross the Atlantic at least 9 times in the next 30 days I guess a few lower levels might be of benefit......

28th May 2004, 06:48
Put this info in the Medical & Health link sticky. (http://www.pprune.org/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=87870) ?

28th May 2004, 23:43
Could be right ETOPS, but on the other hand, your chief pilot might well not agree....and in this case, the added radiation might be the least of your worries.

On the bright side...you could save on the power bill at home, glowing in the dark keeps the lights on low...:E :ok: :sad: :ooh:

28th May 2004, 23:43
Yes it is ironic that flight crew can be exposed to substantially more radiation than workers in a nuclear plant with no legal H & S implications. In the EU the curent directive states:

the limit on effective dose for exposed workers shall be 100 millisieverts ('mSv`) in a consecutive five-year period, subject to a maximum effective dose of 50 mSv in any single year. Member States may decide an annual amount.
- the limit on equivalent dose for the lens of the eye shall be 150 mSv in a year;
- the limit on equivalent dose for the skin shall be 500 mSv in a year. This limit shall apply to the dose averaged over any area of 1 cm², regardless of the area exposed;
- the limit on equivalent dose for the hands, forearms, feet and ankles shall be 500 mSv in a year.

As far as I know the US has a more relaxed ruling.

The main issue IMO is that little is known/broadcast about career cumulative effects and that should be of concern to those starting at a young age on jets that reularly climb to FL400.

Not many realise that radiation increases exponentially the highter you fly. Staying one level lower than optimum rather than one level higer will spare you quite a few millisieverts.

bear in mind that 15 years ago many aircraft had trouble climbing above FL300 - now the cumulative effects are higher.

29th May 2004, 01:16
Under JAR-OPS 1.390 is it a requirement that companies monitor the dosage each crewmember is subjected to, and advises that crewmember when a certain level is reached.

29th May 2004, 14:25

you calculated your exposure at FL390 as 33 microsieverts per flight.
The annual limit quoted earlier is 20 millisieverts which is the equivalent of 606 flights.

I think you're safe - just don't work too much overtime!