The equivalent dose is a measure of the radiation dose to tissue where an attempt has been made to allow for the different relative biological effect of different types of radiation. Equivalent dose is therefore a less fundamental quantity than radiation absorbed dose, but is more biologically significant. Equivalent dose has units of sieverts.
Equivalent dose (E) is calculated by treating the absobed dose (D) with a radiation type dependent quality factor (Q):
E = DQ
where Q is 1 for x-rays, gamma-rays and beta-particles, but higher for protons, neutrons, alpha particles etc.
The sievert (symbol: Sv) is the SI derived unit of doseequivalent.
The equivalentdose to a tissue is found by multiplying the absorbed dose, in grays, by a dimensionless "quality factor" Q, dependent upon radiation type, and by another dimensionless factor N, dependent on all other pertinent factors.
The collective dose that a population is exposed to is measured in "man-sieverts" (man.Sv).
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