Radiation Protection Glossary

A radiation protection glossary for Radiation Protection Supervisors (RPS) and anyone interesting in radiation safety terminology. The glossary is a mixture of health physics terms, and phrases related to radiation legislation, transport, practical safety and similar.

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Proton

The proton is one of the basic particles that make up an Atom. The proton is found in the Nucleus and has a positive electrical charge equal to the negative charge of an Electron. It has a mass similar to that of a Neutron. The number of protons in an atom defines the Atomic Number and hence the type of Element present.

The definition of 'safe' is not strictly an engineering term; it's a societal term. Does it mean absolutely no loss of life? Does it mean absolutely no contamination with radiation? What exactly does 'safe' mean?

– Henry Petroski