Measurements of UV-A exposure of commercial pilots using genesis-UV dosimeters

Katarzyna A. Baczynska*, Simon Brown, Adrian C. Chorley, Andrey Lyachev, Marc Wittlich, Marina Khazova

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


A number of studies suggest that pilots are at twice the risk of melanoma and keratinocyte skin cancers than the general population, and that they have a raised mortality from melanoma. No conclusive links with in-flight exposure to ionising radiationor circadian rhythm disruption due to the pilots' shift work were found. Possible over-exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UVR) may be implicated as pilots may be exposed to higher UV-A levels at cruise altitude compared with those at ground levels. The direct method of making in-flight spectral measurements has been carried out on a limited number of flights, but this technique is challenging; the use of small wearable sensors may be more appropriate but there are a few issues that should be addressed for their use in cockpit measurements. While the spectral response of sensors for erythema effective values usually closely matches the corresponding weighting function, the response of UV-A sensors may not be spectrally flat, which, if not corrected to account for the transmission of the aircraft windshield, could potentially result in large errors. In this paper, the spectral correction method was applied to the UV-A sensor of the Genesis-UV unit to measure UVR exposure of commercial pilots on 312 flights to a range of destinations from four UK airports from September 2016 to August 2017.

Original languageEnglish
Article number475
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the authors.


  • Dosimetry
  • Occupational exposure
  • Personal solar UV exposure measurements
  • Pilots
  • Skin cancers
  • UV-A exposure
  • UVR exposure
  • Ultraviolet radiation


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