Research project DAPNE - Dosimetric approaches for protection of people in large-scale nuclear emergencies
Dosimetric approaches for protection of people in large-scale nuclear emergencies
According to the IAEA, a quick and reliable dose assessment is an essential part of radiation emergency management. Given the currently increased risk of terrorist attacks with the use of an improvised nuclear device but also of a nuclear war, it is important to develop dosimetric solutions for fast on-field application in case of a large nuclear emergency. Quick dosimetry will help in the management of an accident including the triage of people, reducing medical surge. At the same time, the number of injured or worried-well may be so high that it will exceed the capacity of emergency preparedness of a single country. Here, international networking is paramount.
The aim of DAPNE is to carry out research aiming at improving dosimetric preparedness and competence in Sweden to cope with a large nuclear emergency.
The project is divided into 3 complementary tasks: 1) to simulate the radiation field and map the equivalent dose distribution as a function of distance and shielding from an improvised nuclear device detonated in a urban environment; 2) to carry out a survey of the available dosimetry systems and identify the best suited one for quick in field application following a large nuclear emergency accounting for neutrons and gamma radiation; 3) to validate gene expression as an individual, quick retrospective dosimeter for a mixed neutron and gamma irradiation as expected following the detonation of an improvised nuclear device (IND).
Such competence is urgently needed in view of the growing threat of an atomic war and of the use of an IND. The project will be carried out in collaboration between the medical physics and radiobiology groups of the Stockholm University, building on the existing knowhow of dosimetry, modelling, biological dosimetry and emergency preparedness. Tight contacts will also be set up with European dosimetry and emergency networks EURADOS, NERIS and RENEB.