This report was requested by the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR), to help them fulfil their statutory responsibilities. The ONR has periodically commissioned the Centre for Radiation, Chemical and Environmental Hazards of Public Health England (PHE) to investigate transport practices and to assess the radiological consequences associated with the normal transport of radioactive material by air.
Two studies have already been carried out on this topic and in 2012 the ONR requested PHE to understake a third survey into the radiological impact of the transport of radioactive material by air. This report describes the results of the third survey and makes a comparison with those of the previous surveys to identify trends.
The study is concerned only with the exposure to radiation from packages of radioactive materials during transport by air; exposure to natural sources of radiation during flights, such as cosmic radiation, was not considered.