Standard Historical Last Updated: Jun 09, 2015
ASTM E1026-13

Standard Practice for Using the Fricke Dosimetry System

Significance and Use

4.1 The Fricke dosimetry system provides a reliable means for measurement of absorbed dose to water, based on a process of oxidation of ferrous ions to ferric ions in acidic aqueous solution by ionizing radiation (4). In situations not requiring traceability to national standards, this system can be used for absolute determination of absorbed dose without calibration, as the radiation chemical yield of ferric ions is well characterized (see Appendix X3).

4.2 The dosimeter is an air-saturated solution of ferrous sulfate or ferrous ammonium sulfate that indicates absorbed dose by an increase in optical absorbance at a specified wavelength. A temperature-controlled calibrated spectrophotometer is used to measure the absorbance (ICRU 80).


1.1 This practice covers the procedures for preparation, testing and using the acidic aqueous ferrous ammonium sulfate solution dosimetry system to measure absorbed dose to water when exposed to ionizing radiation. The system consists of a dosimeter and appropriate analytical instrumentation. The system will be referred to as the Fricke dosimetry system. The Fricke dosimetry system may be used as either a reference standard dosimetry system or a routine dosimetry system.

1.2 This practice is one of a set of standards that provides recommendations for properly implementing dosimetry in radiation processing, and describes a means of achieving compliance with the requirements of Practice E2628 for the Fricke dosimetry system. It is intended to be read in conjunction with Practice E2628.

1.3 The practice describes the spectrophotometric analysis procedures for the Fricke dosimetry system.

1.4 This practice applies only to gamma radiation, X-radiation (bremsstrahlung), and high-energy electrons.

1.5 This practice applies provided the following are satisfied:

1.5.1 The absorbed dose range shall be from 20 to 400 Gy (1).2

1.5.2 The absorbed-dose rate does not exceed 106 Gy·s−1 (2).

1.5.3 For radioisotope gamma sources, the initial photon energy is greater than 0.6 MeV. For X-radiation (bremsstrahlung), the initial energy of the electrons used to produce the photons is equal to or greater than 2 MeV. For electron beams, the initial electron energy is greater than 8 MeV.

Note 1The lower energy limits given are appropriate for a cylindrical dosimeter ampoule of 12 mm diameter. Corrections for displacement effects and dose gradient across the ampoule may be required for electron beams (3). The Fricke dosimetry system may be used at lower energies by employing thinner (in the beam direction) dosimeter containers (see ICRU Report 35).

1.5.4 The irradiation temperature of the dosimeter should be within the range of 10 to 60°C.

1.6 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

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Book of Standards Volume: 12.02
Developed by Subcommittee: E61.02
Pages: 9
DOI: 10.1520/E1026-13
ICS Code: 17.240