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Occupational and Environmental Safety

X-Ray Equipment

In South Carolina, use of Radiation Producing (or, x-ray) Equipment is regulated by the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). Additionally, the use of RPE in Clemson must be reviewed and approved by the CU Radiation Safety Committee (RSC). Radiation Safety personnel assures that RPE is used in compliance with all federal, state, and local regulations, as well as Clemson University’s policies.

  • What do I need to use Radiation Producing Equipment (RPE) at Clemson?

    All RPE used in Clemson must be registered with DHEC as soon as it is acquired. In order to work with x-ray equipment, a person must complete appropriate online X-Ray Safety Training, receive instructions on the instrument operation and emergency procedures, and be listed on one of the approved RPE Projects. Certain RPE applications will require the use of a personal dosimeter.


  • What is an RPE Project?

    An RPE Project includes: a Responsible Investigator (RI); approved equipment; labs where work under this Project may be performed; protocols of RPE use; any special requirements; list of individuals approved by the Project’s RI to work under this Project. All RPE Projects must be reviewed and approved by the Clemson University Radiation Safety Committee.

  • Am I required to wear a dosimeter while working with RPE?

    The use of personal dosimeters (“badges”) is required for any person likely to exceed 10% of the Annual Occupational Dose Limit (10% of 5 rem or 500 mrem). Additionally, personal dosimeters are required for all personnel using Industrial X-Ray equipment. Persons entering posted “High Radiation” or “Very High Radiation” areas are also required to wear personal dosimeters, but currently, there are no such areas at Clemson University.  

  • What training do I need to work with RPE?

    All personnel working with RPE must complete online Research X-Ray Safety Training. Personnel using x-ray on animals must complete online Veterinary X-Ray Safety Training. As a refresher, this training must be taken every two years. Also, every RPE user must receive equipment-specific operation and emergency procedure training from a qualified person (manufacturer or current approved user).

  • What is the difference between Analytical and Industrial RPE?

    SC DHEC defines Analytical X-ray equipment as “any machine utilizing x-rays for examination of the microscopic structure, or elemental or chemical composition of materials,” such as x-ray diffraction (XRD), fluorescence (XRF), spectroscopy, and electron microscopes.

    Industrial x-ray equipment utilizes x-rays “for examination of the macroscopic structure of materials.” Industrial x-ray equipment may be used in a cabinet, shielded room, or field radiography. As a rule, industrial RPE is more penetrating (higher kVp) than analytical.

  • Can I use x-ray equipment for human research?

    X-ray equipment for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes shall only be used by a person certified by the SC Radiation Quality Standards Association (SCRQSA) and only as directed by the prescription of a licensed medical practitioner.

    All x-ray research studies (including bone density and body composition) must be performed by a person certified by SCRQSA and must be approved by the Institutional Research Board (IRB).

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