Concept

Background radiation

Summary
Background radiation is a measure of the level of ionizing radiation present in the environment at a particular location which is not due to deliberate introduction of radiation sources. Background radiation originates from a variety of sources, both natural and artificial. These include both cosmic radiation and environmental radioactivity from naturally occurring radioactive materials (such as radon and radium), as well as man-made medical X-rays, fallout from nuclear weapons testing and nuclear accidents. Definition Background radiation is defined by the International Atomic Energy Agency as "Dose or dose rate (or an observed measure related to the dose or dose rate) attributable to all sources other than the one(s) specified. So a distinction is made between dose which is already in a location, which is defined here as being "background", and the dose due to a deliberately introduced and specified source. This is important where radiation measurements are taken of a spec
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