About EFMR
Our Mission
How we do it
Radiation Levels
RadAlert Monitor
Radiation Data
Marcellus Shale
Emergency Planning
Contact Us
Where To Go When You Need Help

Glossary of Terms

ALARA (acronym for "as low as is reasonably achievable") means making every reasonable effort to maintain exposures to radiation as far below Federal dose limits as is practical.

AmerGen - corporation comprised of British Energy and PECO Energy. This corporate entity owns and operates TMI-1 and Oyster Creek, and is contraced by GPU Nuclear to monitor TMI-2 during PDMS.

Alpha, beta, and gamma radiation - Alpha radiation is the least penetrating of the three types. Beta radiation may cause skin burns; beta-emitters are harmful if they enter the body. Beta particles are easily stopped by a thin sheet of metal. Gamma radiation (gamma rays) is very penetrating and is best stopped or shielded against with dense material, such as lead.

B&W - Babcock & Wilcox, the company that supplied the TMI 1 & 2 reactors. B&W is now known as Framatome.

BRP refers to the Bureau of Radiation Protection, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

BWR - Boiling Water Reactor.

CPM refers to "counts per minute" or the number of radioactive disintegrations per minute.

DEP - Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

EPA - United States Environmental Protection Agency.

Exelon - Corporate entity created by the merger of PECO Energy and Commonwealth Edison. This company is licensed to operate nuclear generating stations in Illinois and Pennsylvania.

FirstEnergy - Electric company based in Akron, Ohio. FE and General Public Utilities merged in 2001. FirstEnergy is licensed to operate nuclear power plants in Ohio and Pennsylvania. This company is responsible for decommissioning Saxton and TMI-2. According to the NRC,  "The current radiological decommissioning cost estimate is $805 million and $27 million for non-radiological funds. The current amount in the decommissioning trust fund is $601 million, as of December 31, 2007."

General Public Utilities - General Public Utilities Nuclear sold TMI-1 and Oyster Creek to AmerGen in 1999. GPUN maintains a POL at TMI-2. General Public Utilities, GPUN's parent, merged into FirstEnergy into 2001.

Mean is the average.

MOX (Mixed Oxide) - Reactor fuel in which plutonium-239 is mixed with natural or reprocessed uranium.

MWe - Megawatts

NRC - United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission

NVC - Non-Cited Violation issued by the NRC in place of a more severe penalty (see Risk-Informed Approach)

pCi/m3 refers to picoCurries of radiation per cubic meter of air.

PDMS - post-defueled monitored storage, which is the state in which TMI-2 is currently being kept.

POL - Possession Only License, issued by the NRC for a non-operating nuclear reactor.

PUC - Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.

PWR - Pressurized Water Reactor

RadAlert is a hand-held radiation monitor that counts beta and gamma particles.

Revised Reactor Oversight Process (ROP) - see Risk-Informed Approach.

Risk-Informed Approach - The NRC's "revised" oversight program for nuclear generating stations. This new protocol was implemented on April 2, 2000, and was designed to "reduce unnecessary regulatory burden" on the nuclear industry (see NCV).

Standard Deviation refers to the expected number of readings which fall above or below the mean. In a normal distribution, these numbers are equal.

© 2003-2008 EFMR Monitoring Group