Services

The radiochemical measurement services provided by the EPA are:

Product certification

The EPA issues certificates to show the radioactivity content of Irish foodstuffs and other produce. Some importing countries may request certificates to show that the radioactivity content is below specific requirements. Any producer of food or drinks products for export may require a product certificate from the EPA, officially called a Certificate of Radioactivity Measurement.

You can find more information on product certification in our Product Certification Services page.

Analysis of Sealed source for Leakage (wipe tests)

A wipe test is carried out to check the integrity of a sealed source of ionising radiation.  Sealed sources are commonly used to deliver a defined dose of radiation, such as that used in cancer therapy or to sterilise food and medical equipment and can be used in industry to check welds on pipelines or in level gauges.

Sealed radioactive sources can suffer as a result of mechanical damage or corrosion of the container. Licensees holding sealed sources are required to have them wipe tested every two years, to ensure that they are within the specified 200 becquerel (Bq) limit.The EPA can provide analysis of a wipe test carried out on a sealed source by your trained personnel. We can also provide information on how to conduct the wipe test, and how to package it for analysis in our laboratory.

Radon in water test

You can be exposed to radioactive radon through drinking water that contains elevated levels of radon, and also through inhaling the gas as it is released from the water.

If you use water from a well or private groundwater supply, you can get the levels of radon in your drinking water measured. You should complete our Radon In Water Application Form and return it to us.We will then send you some sample bottles for you to collect water and instructions on how to fill the bottles.

Contact us if you cannot find answers to your questions on our website, or call our radon freefone 1800 300 600 to arrange a measurement.

Total alpha and total beta and tritium testing of drinking water

The EPA can carry out the measurement of other radioactivity concentrations in drinking water, i.e. alpha activity, beta activity and tritium. The recommended screening levels for gross alpha and gross beta activity are 100 milli-becquerel per litre (mBq/l) and 1000 milli-becquerel per litre (mBq/l) respectively, while the level for tritium is 10 becquerel per litre (Bq/l).

If the radioactivity concentrations of the water tested are below these screening levels then the water supply complies with the EU Drinking Water Directive (98/83/EC) and is considered acceptable for human consumption and no action is required.

If the radioactivity concentrations exceed these screening levels then individual radionuclide concentrations should be determined and, if necessary, the dose arising from each component calculated. The EPA will give advice on any further analysis required.

A one-litre water sample is required for these analyses.

Charges

Current product certification charges are provided in our Radiation Monitoring Services Price List.

Other radiochemical measurements

The EPA radio-analytical laboratory is equipped for:

  • Gamma spectroscopy
  • Alpha spectroscopy
  • Liquid scintillation counting
  • Total alpha beta determination

Determinations routinely undertaken in the laboratory include:

  • Gamma emitters
  • Actinides
  • Tritium
  • Carbon-14
  • Technetium-99
  • Strontium-90

Please contact us if you would like to have any of these measurements carried out.