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Research and innovation at the intersection of physics and health sciences

For more information, please contact Kelly Classic, HPS Media Liaison,, 507-284-4407 (office until 1/26 or after 2/3), 507-254-8444 (cell)

McLean, VA, January 22, 2008 What new frontiers of science can be probed with the worlds first free electron laser using x-ray wavelengths" How can we quickly deploy appropriate radiation detection systems to any location on a highway when a vehicles cargo is suspect" How much has the average medical radiation exposure increased and why"

These and other questions will be addressed at the 2008 Midyear Topical Meeting of the Health Physics Society (HPS), which will take place January 28-30, 2008 in Oakland, California at the Oakland Marriott Convention Center. Approximately 400 attendees are expected, with over 130 presentations throughout the three days.

Here are two examples of the noteworthy talks that will be presented at the meeting:


In 1982, the per capita radiation dose from medical imaging was estimated to be 0.54 mSv (millisieverts, a standard unit of radiation exposure) and the collective dose was124,000 person-Sv. Just 14 years later, the National Council on Radiation made preliminary estimates that the per capita dose from medical exposure (not including radiotherapy) had increased almost 600 percent (to about 3.0 mSv.) The collective dose had increased over 750 percent to about 880,000 person-Sv. The largest contributions and increases have come primarily from CT scanning and nuclear medicine. (Presentation TPM-B.1 Tuesday, January 29, 2008, Presenter email:


The Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC) will be the world's first free electron laser at x-ray wavelengths when it becomes operational in 2009. Ultra-fast pulses of unprecedented brightness will enable completely new classes of experiments, such as following atomic rearrangements during chemical reactions, and imaging of single molecules.

(Two presentations: MPM-A.4 Monday, January 28, 2008, Presenter email:; and WAM-A.5 Wednesday, January 30, 2008, Presenter email:


  • Information about particle accelerator facilities for medical therapy; use of radiation-generating machines for cargo imaging systems;

  • Discussion of a new technique that overcomes these limitations by obtaining tomographic images using the multiple scattering of cosmic radiation as it transits each vehicle;

  • A Nuclear Regulatory Commission update on efforts to regulate naturally-occurring and accelerator-produced radioactive materials;

  • Performance of non-destructive testing radiography using a battery-powered portable x-ray generator rather than a traditional gamma radiography source;

  • A report on the status of two new International Electrotechnical Commission international standards (one on personnel screening and one on cargo/vehicle inspection systems);

  • A review of the recently released ANSI Standard related to the use of radiation detection equipment used for national security;

  • A new method for delivering therapeutic radiation doses using a miniature x-ray source.

Information about these and all of the presentations can be found at


Contact: Jason Bardi
American Institute of Physics

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