Fukushima students' study finds radiation dosage within range in other countries

27 November 2015

A research thesis by a group of Fukushima High School students in Fukushima city, northeastern Japan, was published on Nov. 27 in the electronic edition of the Journal of Radiological Protection, a British science journal.

Designated as a Super Science High School by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Fukushima High School is engaged in advanced math and science education. Students from a radiation physics class of its super science department -– third-year students H. Onodera and R. Suzuki, both 18, and second-year students M. Saito, Y. Fujiwara, both 17, and S. Anzai, 16 –- as well as their supervising teacher T. Hara, 57, took part in compiling the thesis.

A total of 216 participants from 26 high schools –- six in Fukushima Prefecture, six elsewhere in Japan, four in France, eight in Poland and two in Belarus –- participated in the study, each wearing a personal electronic dosimeter dubbed "D-shuttle" for two weeks between June and December 2014. The dosimeter is capable of measuring hourly levels of exposure to radiation for individuals. Analysis of the data collected found that individual exposure doses in Fukushima Prefecture were about the same as in other regions and countries in the study despite the 2011 nuclear accident at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Fukushima Daiichi plant.

"We would be glad if we could contribute to restoring confidence and rebuilding our reputation by letting people around the world know about the research results," said Onodera in reference to the general public's concerns about radioactive contamination in Fukushima from the nuclear disaster.

(Translated by Kyodo News)