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Antimony 124 emits highly energetic gamma/beta radiation. The principal photon energies for gamma emission are at 0.603 MeV (97%) and 1.692 MeV (50%). Antimony 124 has a half-life of 60 days. One curie of Antimony 124 will give a dose rate of 980 mR per hour at a meter.
Antimony 124 labeled compounds have both internal and external exposure hazards to humans. Internally, Antimony 124 can cause localized damage if ingested, inhaled or absorbed by the skin. Externally, both beta and gamma radiation can cause localized damage to exposed areas.
Certain precautions can be taken to ensure that radiation exposure is kept to a minimum:
· Minimize the time spent in close proximity to the radioactive materials.
· Always use remote handling tools such as tongs whenever handling radioactive material.
· Always wear disposable gloves and/or clothing whenever handling radioactive materials and keep your hands away from your mouth or other exposed skin.
· Use radioactive materials in well-ventilated areas.
· If necessary, shield the radioactive materials such that radiation dose rates are less that 0.25 mR/h in accessible areas.
· Always monitor yourself and areas where radioactive materials are used for loose contamination and remove if detected.
Contact the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission within twenty-four hours of loss of radioactive sources or of an accident/ incident that could result in a personnel exposure in excess of the limits detailed in Schedule II of the Atomic Energy Control Act.