Innovations in Biotechnology and Medical Sciences

Linear No-Threshold (LNT) Model for Radiation Safety


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: LNT Model

Mains level: Not Much

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) decisively upheld the Linear No-Threshold (LNT) model to prescribe radiation safety standards, ending the protracted controversy on the topic.

What is the LNT Model?

  • The LNT is a dose-response model used in radiation protection to estimate stochastic health effects such as radiation-induced cancer, genetic mutations etc. on the human body due to exposure to ionizing radiation.
  • The LNT model states that biological effects such as cancer and hereditary effects due to exposure to ionising radiation increase as a linear function of dose, without threshold.
  • It provides a sound regulatory basis for minimizing the risk of unnecessary radiation exposure to both members of the public and radiation workers.

Why in news?

  • LNT model continues to provide a sound basis for a conservative radiation protection regulatory framework that protects both the public and occupational workers.
  • The model helps the agencies to regulate radiation exposures to diverse categories of licensees, from commercial nuclear power plants to individual industrial radiographers and nuclear medical practices.
  • There are also studies and findings that support the continued use of the LNT model, including those by national and international authoritative scientific advisory bodies.


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