UN 0805 – Introduction to Operational Health Physics

2021 Version – updates and material will be posted as they become available


  April 11, 2021
  April 18, 2021
  April 24, 2021
  April 25, 2021
  May 9, 2021
  May 16, 2021
  May 30, 2021
  June 6, 2021
  June 13, 2021 Final Exam
 Start Time:

  9:00 a.m.

  To be delivered synchronously and 100% online via WebEx   
  Josip Zic


Recordings – https://mcmaster.webex.com/


  • Final date to Register – April 9, 2021
  • Last day to Drop Course – April 12, 2021

Course Description:

An introduction to a number of topics that will be encountered in the practice of health physics. The following topics will be discussed: Dose limitation; dosimetric quantities for individuals and populations; ioinzing radiation risks and hazards; ICRP-60; internal doses and the compartment model; derived air concentrations and annual limit on intake; metabolic models for respiratory system and GI tract, radiation safety at nuclear reactors, particle accelerators, irradiators, X-Ray installations and laboratories; pathway analysis; derived release limits; environmental monitoring, sample collection and preparation, and sources of radiation; atmospheric transport; cost-benefit analysis; derivation of limits for surface contamination.

Prerequisite: Registration in the UNENE M.Eng. or UNENE Diploma Program

Lecturer: Josip Zic

Course Text:

Additional reading: International Commission on Radiation Protection (ICRP) 103, 115, 119

Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC):
Radiation Protection Regulations
Nuclear Substances & Radiation Devices

Course Schedule

Course Notes

Break Out Activities


Case Studies

Course Outline

1. Introduction (2 hours)


2. Radiation Protection Programs (13 hours)
2.1. Review of Harmful Effects of Radiation
2.2. ICRP Framework of Radiation Protection
2.3. Canadian Radiation Protection Related Acts and Regulations
2.4. Radiation Safety Considerations at CANDU Nuclear Facilities
2.5. Clearance of Material from Radiological Areas

3. Concepts, Quantities and Units (7.5 hours)
3.1. External and Internal Dosimetry Programs
3.2. Dose from Internal Exposures and Dosimetric Models
3.3. Annual Limits on Intake and Derived Air Concentrations


4. Operational Health Physics (15 hours)
4.1. Radioactive Source Term
4.2. Contamination Control
4.3. Shielding
4.4. Planning Radioactive Work
4.5. Implementation of ALARA Tools
4.6. Estimation of Project Collective Doses
4.7. Events that Shaped Radiation Protection Programs

5. Emergency Response (7.5 hours)
5.1. Doses from Accidental Releases at Nuclear Facilities
5.2. Derived Release Limits
5.3. Emergency Preparedness


6. Public and Environmental Exposure (7.5 hours)
6.1. Effluent and Environmental Monitoring
6.2. Radiation Instrumentation
6.3. Public Exposure Scenarios