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NEW CRP: Radiation Inactivation of Bio-Hazards Using High-Powered Electron Beam Accelerators (F23033)

New Coordinated Research Project

Disinfection mechanism by electron beams (Photo: Dinara Abbasova)

Radiation technology has emerged as an effective tool for the decontamination of bio-hazards. It has been instrumental in improving the quality of human life through its effective sterilization of medical and healthcare products and its improvement of food safety.

Over the years, this technology has been primarily based on using gamma radiation sources like Cobalt-60. Emerging concerns about the safety and security of radioactive sources, combined with the availability of high powered machine based sources (for example, through the use of electron beams and X-rays), have encouraged stakeholders to look for machine based electron beam radiation sources that can be safely used in the future on the industrial and commercial level.

However, to bring out the full potential of electron beams in applications related to the treatment of bio-hazards, it is important to grow our understanding of a number of factors, including the kinetics of the inactivation of bio-hazards under high radiation doses. Achieving this is complicated by the variety of radiation sources involved, their high dose rates and energies, and the differences between various microbes and their environments. It is therefore important to understand the fundamentals of microbial inactivation under differing radiation sources and conditions. Another critical aspect for these applications is the development of appropriate dosimetry procedures for process control.

CRP Overall Objective:

This CRP aims to formulate guidelines for the use of electron beam accelerators for the treatment of bio-hazards of concern, under changing conditions such as at high dose rates, different ambient conditions, and varying substrates. This involves applications such as radiation sterilization, hygienization of bio-solids, sanitization of infectious hospital waste or toxic effluents, and elimination of deliberate bio-hazards.

Specific Research Objectives:

  • Provide reliable data about radiation inactivation of pathogenic microorganisms and other bio-contaminants under varying physical conditions.
  • Develop dose setting procedures appropriate to specific bio-contaminants.
  • Develop appropriate methodologies for treatment of bio-hazards using electron beam accelerators
  • Develop validation procedures for the processes of treating bio-hazards at high dose rates.
  • Develop guidelines for treatment of bio-hazards using electron beam accelerators.
  • Demonstrate treatment of bio-hazards using electron accelerators.

How to join the CRP?

Please submit your Proposal for Research Contract or Agreement by 31 December 2017 directly to the IAEA’s Research Contracts Administration Section, using the form templates on the CRA web site (preferably via email). For further information related to this CRP, potential applicants should contact Joao Osso or Sunil Sabharwal, Section Head and Technical Officer, respectively, of the Radioisotope Products and Radiation Technology Section, Division of Physical and Chemical Sciences, Department of Nuclear Sciences and Applications.

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