ANKARA, Turkey (ViaNews) – A group of doctorate students in the Institute of Nuclear Sciences Department at Ege University developed a clothing material for their medical staff who had been exposed to radiation on a daily basis due to their professions. Professor Fatma Yurt Onaran said to Diken, a Turkish newspaper, that the medical staff working in the radiology and nuclear medicine fields usually had to wear lead composite aprons but these aprons were weighty and disadvantageous.
Onaran also explained that these aprons have a short lifespan because of the toxic effects, height, and fragility of lead, the material used in the product. She went on saying,
“In this project, my doctorate students and I have focused on the production of a new material that can minimize these disadvantages and we have developed a material made of metal-polymer composites.”
Onaran stressed the new material is much lighter and more flexible than the lead aprons, and an even more effective radiation shielding effect.
“This new material will be nontoxic, light, environmentally friendly, and convenient. We have already patented our new shielding material and have also prepared a prototype of thyroid protectors”, said Prof. Onaran.
Contributors to this project besides Prof Onaran are Alparslan Erol, Isa Pocan, Emre Yanbay, Onur Alp Ersoz, and Fatma Yurt Lambrecht.
According to the the Turkish publication, Hurriyet, the rector of the university, Prof. Dr Necdet Budak, emphasized the importance of this new development.
“This is a significant development for Turkey as well. Our country is foreign-dependent with regard to the importing of these x-ray and gamma resistant materials. I believe this scientific development will put an end to this dependence. Our universities are full of bright and talented students. We will support our students and academics until we achieve commercial success and improve our economy.”