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Resolution 5 of the CGPM (1979)
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of the CGPM at its 16th meeting (1979)

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Special name for the SI unit of dose equivalent (sievert)* (4) (6)

The 16th Conférence Générale des Poids et Mesures,


  • the effort made to introduce SI units into the field of ionizing radiations,
  • the risk to human beings of an underestimated radiation dose, a risk that could result from a confusion between absorbed dose and dose equivalent,
  • that the proliferation of special names represents a danger for the Système International d'Unités and must be avoided in every possible way, but that this rule can be broken when it is a matter of safeguarding human health,

adopts the special name sievert, symbol Sv, for the SI unit of dose equivalent in the field of radioprotection. The sievert is equal to the joule per kilogram.

Comptes Rendus de la 16e CGPM (1979), 1980, 100
Metrologia, 1980, 16(1), 55-61


The CIPM, in 1984, decided to accompany this Resolution with an explanation (Recommendation 1).

The reader should note that the official version of this Resolution is the French text.