Thermometry and Ionizing Radiation

Includes 2 Laboratories:

  • Ionizing Radiation Metrology Laboratory (IRML)
  • Thermal Metrology Laboratory (ThML)

Ionizing Radiation Metrology Laboratory (IRML)

IRML is one of the departments of Metrology of Heat and Ionizing Radiation Division at the National Institute for Standards. It is assigned to calibrate ionizing radiation measuring instruments on the national level according to law establishing the institute and the labor law of radioactive sources. IRML is a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency / the World Health Organization (IAEA/WHO) network of Secondary Standard Dosimetry Laboratories (SSDLs) since 1977, for high dosimetric accuracy particularly in external beam radiation therapy and other fields.

The department possess secondary standard systems used for measuring ionizing radiation with high accuracy in medical (diagnostic and therapeutic), industrial and environmental fields which are traceable to SI units in BIPM-Paris.


Holding, dissemination and developing of national standards for radiation dosimetry units.


  • Calibration of radiation measuring instruments.
  • Provide traceability to national standards of radiation measurements to users in Egypt.
  • Development of primary and secondary standard dosimetry system.

National Activities

  • Development of calibration methods for different levels of radiation doses.
  • TLD personal dosimetry and radiation workers.
  • Performing calibrations for radiation measuring equipments used in different applications.
  • Low level background activity measurements.
  • Providing technical consultation and advice upon request to industry, medicine and other sectors.
  • Researches in the fields of producing and testing new radiation dosimeters and calibrations.
  • Participation in the national and international conferences.

Organizing special training courses in the fields of :

  • Radiation dosimetry.
  • Calibration techniques.
  • Radiation protection.
  • Types of ionizing radiations and its interaction with matter.

International Activities

Participation in annual international audits organized by SSDL network at the following fields:

  • TLD audit in radiotherapy level
  • TLD audit in protection level
  • Transfer chamber therapy level.
  • Recent participation at the intercomparison organized by regional metrology organizations (RMOs) for the:
  • APMP high dose CO-60
  • APMP. RI (I)- K 1.1
  • APMP. RI (I)- K 4

Instruments and Equipments

1-Radioactive Sources

γ-ray sources: (Cobalt-60) with different activities 5 mCi, 5 Ci and 550 Ci and Cs-137 with activity 500 Ci used for :

  • Calibration of different gamma ray detectors.
  • Calibration of survey meters.
  • Calibration of personal dosimeters.
  • Samples irradiation.
  • Neutron sources: Am-Be with activities;1 Ci, 5 Ci and Cf-252 with 0.00168 activity Ci used for:
  • Calibration of neutron survey meters.
  • Calibration of different types neutron ionization chambers.
  • Samples irradiation.
  • Radon and alpha particle sources used for:
  • Measurement of radon concentration.
  • Calibration of radon detectors.
  • Calibration of radon gas sources.

2- Equipment

Reference standard dosimetric systems including different electrometers such as NPL, Farmer & Unidos and different ionization chambers for different radiation ranges and applications calibrations.

Neutron monitors and neutron ionization chambers.

TLD systems (type 4500 and 6600) for personal protection level dosimetry.

Electron Spin Resonance system used for :

  • Measurement of high doses radiation.
  • Dose calibration for high activity gamma ray sources (sterilization and food irradiation doses).
  • Measuring the number of free radicals in organic and inorganic samples.

Thermal Metrology Laboratory (ThML)

Temperature is one of the most important of all physical quantities. Measuring and controlling of temperature play an important role in the fields of industry, environment, health and scientific research. The main job of the Lab. is to realize the unit of thermodynamics temperature Kelvin by realizing the international temperature scale (ITS-90).

ThML Activities

  • Thermometry, Humidity,Viscosity and Thermal analysis.
  • Thermometry

The primary standards of temperature, based on TPW and other fixed points, called the thermal equilibrium states, are well established at NIS as per International Temperature Scale of 1990 (ITS-90) in the form of sealed cells of high purity materials.

The temperature scale at ThML from 54 K to 962 °C, (FPs O2, Ar, Hg, Sn, Zn, Al, Ag) is realized by SPRT with uncertainty varying from ±0.14 m °C at TPW (0.01 °C) to maximum ± 5 m °C at Ag point (961.78 °C).NIS is constructing a State-of-the-Art cryostat for highly accurate temperature measurements down to 6.5 Kelvin.

In the thermocouple thermometry, the range from 0 °C to 1554 °C is realized by standard Type-S & R TCs with uncertainty varying from ±0.32 °C to ± 0.8 °C. ThML offers thermocouple calibration at high temperature with ultra-low uncertainties in the novel cobalt-carbon (Co-C, 1324 °C) and palladium-carbon (Pd-C, 1492 °C) eutectic fixed points of 0.55 °C and 0.7 °C.

The radiation temperature scale has been established by installing photoelectric linear pyrometer, LP4 and realizing the silver point (Ag, 961.78 °C) and copper point (Cu, 1084.62 °C) in the form of metal-in-graphite blackbodies with an uncertainty better than ± 0.02 °C.

Relative humidity calibrations are offered at primary level (calibration directly against a national standard humidity generator) or at a secondary level (against a traceably calibrated transfer standard hygrometer).ThML offers facilities for moisture content in:concrete, flowers, wood and other building materials. package grain, range from 6% – 40%.

Realization and extension of the National viscosity scale with an uncertainty of 0.25% starting from 1.0035 mm2/S up to 200000 mm2/S at wide temperature ranges, from -20 oC up to 100 oC. Calibration of all types of viscometers and oils.

Humidity and Moisture

Relative humidity calibrations are offered at primary level (calibration directly against a national standard humidity generator) or at a secondary level (against a traceably calibrated transfer standard hygrometer).ThML offers facilities for moisture content in:concrete, flowers, wood and other building materials.package grain, range from 6% – 40%.


  • Calibration of SPRT in the range from 54 K up to 962 oC.
  • Calibration of Infrared (Pyrometers) in the range from 960 up to 2300 oC.
  • Calibration of Liquid in Glass Thermometerswithin the range from 0 oC up to 400 oC.
  • Calibration of all types of thermocouples from 0 oC to 1100 oC by comparison with standard Pt10%Rh vs Pt thermocouples which have been calibrated on the ITS-90.
  • Calibration of all kinds of viscometers and determination of viscosity of liquids.
  • Calibration all kinds of hygrometers, thermo-hygrometers and data loggers in the range from -80 oC up to 100 oC.
  • Determination of calorific values and thermal properties of materials.
  • Validation system (temperature and relative humidity) is used for calibration, validation, thermal mapping for climatic chambers (walk in and bench top), and incubators and Heat penetration study by using penetrating sensor.
  • Can give experimental training courses in calibration of thermometers, viscometers, hygrometers and calorimetric measurements.