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Radiation Information Network's Time line of first 50 Years

Table 0.1

Chronology of the First Half Century of Radiation Protection

by R. Kathren and P. Ziemer

Form edited for WWW publication


1895

  • November 8 - Discovery of X Rays----- W.K. Roentgen

1896

  • January 3 - X-Ray report made public
  • February - Discovery of Radioactivity -----H. Becquerel
  • March 3 - First reports of possible x-ray injury; damage to eyes -----T.A. Edison, W.J. Morton
  • March 14 - Concern expressed over possibility of x-ray injury -----F. Battelli
  • April 10 - Epilation noted from x-ray exposure -----J. Daniel
  • April 18 - Skin effects first noted -----L. G. Stevens
  • July - First x-ray protective device: a heavy glass plate to protect the eyes during dental radiography -----W.H. Rollins
  • Reports of accidental injury (burns) -----H.D. Hawks
  • November 18 - Deliberately induced experimental injury (burns) -----E. Thomson
  • Gold leaf electroscope used to make ionization measurements -----L. Benoist

1897

  • Air thermometer used to measure energy transfer by x-rays -----E. Dorn

1898

  • January - Aluminum filter used as protective device -----E. Thomson
  • May - Dark adaptation prior to fluoroscopy suggested -----F.H. Williams
  • July - Leaded x-ray tub housing; collimators -----W.H. Rollins
  • July - Word "radioactivity" coined -----P. & M. Curie
  • December - Radium discovered -----P. & M. Curie
  • Gamma rays discovered -----P. Villard

1899

  • April - Radiographer licensure recommended to protect public -----J. Dennis
  • May - Malpractice award for x-ray burns
  • Ozone hazard of x-ray generators noted
  • Listing of protective devices (gloves, aprons, etc.) in x-ray catalog -----R. Friedlander Co.

1900

  • Increased target to skin distance to reduce skin dose -----M.K. Kassabian

1901

  • January 3 - X-ray lethality to person alleged
  • Skin burn caused by radium carried on person -----H. Becquerel
  • X-ray lethality to mammals demonstrated experimentally -----W.H. Rollins

1902

  • X-ray lethality to mammalian fetus demonstrated -----W.H. Rollins

1903

  • Fractionation of exposure in fluoroscopy -----W.H. Rollins
  • Protection committee within ARRS proposed -----S.H. Monell
  • First direct reading radiation instrument; spinthariscope -----W. Crookes

1904

  • Ocotober - First death in x-ray pioneer attributed to cumulative overexposure -----C.M. Dally

1905

  • Radiation unit based on ionization first proposed -----M. Franklin

1906

  • Law of radiosensitivity of tissues put forth -----J. Bergonie & R. Tribondeau

1907

  • Mutation by x-ray reported in toads -----C.R. Bardeen
  • Photographic plate carried in pocket for monitoring x-ray exposure -----R.V. Wagner
  • Use of gas-filled tubes for detection of radiation -----E. Rutherford

1911

  • International radium standard and Curie unit -----M. Curie

1912

  • Half value layer concept -----T. Christan

1913

  • Hot cathode x-ray tubes and tungsten targets permitting higher voltages -----W.D. Coolidge

1915

  • British Roentgen Society adopts radiation protection recommendations

1920

  • First standing x-ray protection committee -----ARRS

1921

  • British X-Ray and Radium Protection Committee issues first memorandum

1922

  • American Roentgen Ray Society adopts radiation protection rules
  • Film badges for personnel monitoring -----G. Pfahler

1925

  • First "tolerance dose" proposed -----A. Mutscheller

1927

  • Genetic effects of x-rays shown -----H.J. Muller
  • First commercial U.S. ionization chamber -----J. Victoreen

1928

  • Roentgen unit formally adopted
  • International X-Ray and Radium Protection Committee formed (forerunner of ICRP)

1929

  • U.S. Advisory committee on X-Ray and Radium Protection formed (forerunner of NCRP)
  • First portable survey meter -----L.S. Taylor

1931

  • USACXRP publishes first recommendations - 0.2 R/day

1932

  • Concept of greater permissible dose for partial body irradiation (hands) introduced -----G. Failla
  • Discover of the neutron -----E. Chadwick

1934

  • ICXRP recommends permissible dose of 0.2 R/day
  • 0.1 R/day (0.5 R/wk)

1935

  • Statement of the Bragg-Gray principle of cavity ionization -----L.H. Gray

1936

  • USACXRP recommends reduction in permissible dose to 0.1 R/day

1941

  • USACXRP recommends adoption of maximum body burden of 0.1 microCi for radium
  • Suggested maximum permissible dose of 0.02 R/day -----L.S. Taylor

1942-1945

  • Manhattan District

1943

  • 4 R/wk shown to cause injury -----H.M. Parker

1944

  • Maximum permissible concentration for inhaled radioactivity introduced -----H.M. Parker
  • Rem and rep introduced -----H.M. Parker

1948

  • 0.3 R/wk

1950

  • 0.3 rem/wk

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