But still you have a point about the miniscule dosage per scan...
I can't really disagree with this.. but I would note that this is a variable amount... and the agents often need to stand close to, and sometimes IN the machine to get people to stand the right way, etc... but you would have to consider that even if it was .4 millirems per scan, if we're talking about 100-200 scans per day that's about 12-24 rems per year... and could be alot higher then that depending on circumstance...And the farther back a person is from the machine, the less they will be exposed to. When dealing with radiation we always consider time, distance, and shielding. Here is the distance equation.
(BTW, the "mR" stands for milliRoentgen which is generally equivalent to a rem, depending on the type of radiation, the calculations do not change however, no matter if you are using mrem or mR)
So, if the operator is 5 ft away from the source and the person being scanned is a foot away from the source, and the source is giving off 2 microrems per scan at the assumed 1 ft away, then the operator is only receiving about .04microrems per scan. This doesn't take in the shielding though provided by the machine itself, since the person being scanned is inside the machine with metal around it, and many things provide different amounts of shielding, depending on the type of radiation. Now, I have no idea what the actual numbers are for how far away the operator is from the source compared to how far away the person be scanned is, but one of the easiest ways to cut down on the radiation received by the operator (if it is a concern) is to change where the operator sits and/or add more shielding to the outside of the machine.
Well, the TSA agents DO NOT get a radiation badge to measure exposure, they are NOT following national guidelines, etc... so this one is only true if we go on the assumption that their work keeps them within those radiation limits by chance.Even TSA though, would have to abide by the radiation limits already in place for people who work with radiation.
---“They say the risk is minimal, but statistically someone is going to get skin cancer from these X-rays,” Dr Michael Love, who runs an X-ray lab at the department of biophysics and biophysical chemistry at Johns Hopkins University school of medicine, told AFP.I wonder who these doctors are that believe it will cause skin cancer. The chances of getting any cancer from even working around ionizing radiation from nuclear power (which are higher levels and doses than these scans are) is only increased by .04% when considering the average dose received by a worker over their lifetime. It doesn't make much sense that such a smaller dosage would be likely to increase the chance of getting skin cancer by any significant amount.
I can understand pilots and other aircrew being concerned, since they already receive a high amount of radiation from the many flights that they do take. So getting extra from these machines would be taking a risk of going over limits (and a huge waste of money), although even for them it isn't likely unless they are pregnant (expectant mothers have lower limits).
“No exposure to X-ray is considered beneficial. We know X-rays are hazardous but we have a situation at the airports where people are so eager to fly that they will risk their lives in this manner,” he said.---
I just wish I had more expertise in the subject to be more then just a repeater of information... but the ultimate point that I do know is that when it comes to radiation exposure that the less you are exposed the better... oh also that x-rays are not in the same category as micro-waves... lol, but most of what I was writing was repeated from others I know that work with radiation, namely a nurse that works with cancer patients.