Chapter 43

NON-IONIZING RADIATION

Contents

Approved by Robert Fairchild
NEW 02/13

43.1 Policy
43.2 Scope
43.3 Applicability
43.4 Exceptions
43.5 Roles and Responsibilities
43.6 Definitions
43.7 Required Work Processes

Work Process A. Non-ionizing Radiation Flowchart
Work Process B. Exposure Limits     
Work Process C. Methods of Exposure Control
Work Process D. Additional Information

43.8 Source Requirements
43.9 Reference Documents

NOTE:
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43.1 Policy

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) Non-ionizing Radiation (NIR) Program is designed to provide a safe working environment for staff that ensures NIR exposure does not exceed the Threshold Value Limits (TVL) for the human eye or skin. The NIR Program at Berkeley Lab ensures personnel are protected from NIR exposure hazards including:

Note: Laser and acoustic (noise) exposures are covered in  separate policies.

43.2 Scope

Non-ionizing Radiation (NIR) refers to electromagnetic radiation with insufficient energy to release a bound electron from an atom. NIR includes the following categories of radiation: ultraviolet (UV), visible light, infrared, radio frequency, microwave, and magnetic fields. (Lasers are covered in the Laser Safety Program.)

43.3 Applicability

This program applies to Berkeley Lab employees, casual and participating visitors, affiliates, and subcontractors who may perform work in or around NIR sources with the potential for over exposure.

43.4 Exceptions

Laser work is covered by the Laser Safety Program.

43.5 Roles and Responsibilities

Role

Responsibilities

Division Director

Ensures the NIR Program is enforced

Environment, Health & Safety (EH&S) Division

  • Arranges or performs NIR assessment as requested or determined by a Job Hazards Analysis (JHA) or other authorization method
  • Establishes controls for NIR hazards
  • Maintains the Berkeley Lab NIR Program
  • Develops and reviews substitute or alternate control measures when primary measures are infeasible or impractical
  • With Supervisor, investigates all instances of suspected exposure

Supervisor/
Work Lead

 

  • Ensures that all NIR users receive adequate and appropriate training
  • Ensures that all NIR users have completed a Job Hazards Analysis (JHA) at least annually and whenever the scope of work changes, and have correctly answered questions relating to NIR use
  • Prepares an Activity Hazard Document (AHD) for a NIR operation and ensures that the provisions of the AHD are properly implemented and diligently followed by users. (To complete an AHD, go to the AHD link on the Berkeley Lab A–Z listing.)
  • Ensures that any visitor receives a site/experimental hazard orientation as part of any visit to any NIR area
  • Investigates all instances of suspected exposure

NIR Equipment Users

  • Receives appropriate on-the-job (OTJ) training prior to unsupervised NIR equipment use
  • Reads, understands, signs, and follows all procedures in the JHA
  • Stops unsafe work activities (see PUB-3000, Chapter 1, Work Process C, Stopping Unsafe Work)
  • Works in a safe manner following Laboratory policy and procedural requirements
  • Promptly reports any malfunctions, problems, accidents, or injuries that may have an impact on safety
  • Immediately reports any suspected NIR exposures to the  supervisor and EHS
  • Refers any questions or concerns to the NIR Subject Matter Expert

Important considerations for determining the full extent of safety control measures include:

43.6 Definitions

Term

Definition

Ultraviolet (UV) Radiation

Electromagnetic radiation greater than 10 nm but less than 400 nm

Visible light

Electromagnetic radiation greater than 400 nm but less than 700 nm

Infrared Radiation

Electromagnetic radiation greater than 100 nm but less than 1 mm

Radio Frequency Radiation

Electromagnetic waves greater than 3 kHz but less than 300 GHz

Microwave Radiation

Electromagnetic waves greater than 300 MHz to 300 GHz (within RF frequencies)

NIR

Non-ionizing Radiation (NIR) refers to electromagnetic radiation with insufficient energy to release a bound electron from an atom. NIR includes the following categories of radiation: ultraviolet (UV), visible light, infrared, radio frequency, microwave, magnetic fields, and lasers.

Electromagnetic spectrum

http://bccp.lbl.gov/Academy/wksp_pix_1/spectrum.gif

43.7 Required Work Processes

Work Process A. Non-ionizing Radiation Flowchart
Work Process B. Exposure Limits     
Work Process C. Methods of Exposure Control
Work Process D. Additional Information

Work Process A. Non-ionizing Radiation Flowchart

CH43-NIR-flowchart.png

Work Process B. Exposure Limits

Exposures to non-ionizing radiation must be below the limits specified in the most current version of Threshold Limit Values for Chemical Substances and Physical Agents, American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH). Additional information and requirements for lasers are provided in Chapter 16 of PUB-3000, Lasers.

Work Process C. Methods of Exposure Control

Where feasible, engineering controls are used to limit exposure to non-ionizing radiation. Otherwise, administrative controls and personal protective equipment are used.

Work Process D. Additional Information

For assistance with NIR, contact the EHSS NIR Safety Coordinator, ext. 2544.

43.8 Source Requirement Documents

43.9 Reference Documents

Document number

Title

Type

07.02.003.001

Safe Work Authorizations 

Program

07.07.018.001

Laser Safety

Program

07.02.001.001

Job Hazards Analysis

Program

 

 

 

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