Science: Are there too much radiation from security checks in rain stations?

March 27, 2021
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    Security scanners are the most common X-ray devices we travel with.

    Airports, train stations, subway stations, and even some convention and exhibition centers require luggage, backpacks and other items to be "passed" on the track of security checkpoints. Have we been exposed to radiation during this "putting and taking" process?Will it affect your health?

     What if you accidentally put your hand in the security scanner?

     Don't worry too much.The scanners work in a similar way to hospital x-rays, but they produce a much lower dose of radiation than medical x-rays.

A single screening is supposed to have a dose of 5 micrograms or less, compared with about 400 micrograms from a single chest X-ray.

     Of course, we would never encourage the protagonist of The Terminal to intentionally enter a security screening machine to test a human body.

     What about having to touch security every day?

    The metal shell of the security detector is covered with a layer of lead plate, and the inlet and outlet are also covered with lead-containing rubber curtain, which have a good shielding effect on X-ray and prevent X-ray leakage. The dose equivalent rate around the surface of the device is 0.14~0.85Sv/h, and the average value is 0.48Sv/h, all of which meet the requirements of relevant national standards.

     If you take 10 minutes a day to pass through security, even if you stay close to the highest radiation dose, the additional radiation you receive in a year would be less than 60Sv, which is only 1/40 of the natural radiation dose per person in the world.

    Although the amount of radiation produced by X-ray screeners is not large, it is recommended to use them properly and not to put your hand through the lead curtain to get your luggage to avoid unnecessary radiation exposure.