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Radioactive Sources: Applications and Alternative Technologies

November 20, 2020

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This open session of the study on Radioactive Sources: Applications and Alternative Technologies will focus on the uses and risk of Americium and on policy related to alpha emitters.  The study is being conducted to assist the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Office of Radiological Security (ORS) program to reduce the use of high-risk radiological materials in commercial applications.

The purpose of this Sandia National Laboratories’ sponsored study is to support existing and future activities under the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Office of Radiological Security (ORS) program to reduce the use of high-risk radiological materials in commercial applications. The study will update the 2008 National Academies consensus study on “Radiation Source: Use and Replacement” by reviewing the current state of high-risk radionuclide applications by sector (e.g., industrial, research, medical, and other commercial applications) and by reviewing the current state of existing technologies on the market that are or could be used to replace radioisotopic technologies in those applications.

Meeting Materials

Background

The National Academies will appoint an ad hoc committee of experts to carry out principal tasks

1.    to review (using the 2008 National Academies report “Radiation Source: Use and Replacement” as a baseline) the current industrial, research, and commercial (including medical) applications of radioactive sources, including Categories 1, 2, and 3 sources as defined by the International Atomic Energy Agency’s “Categorization of Radioactive Sources,” IAEA-TECDOC-1344; and

2.    to identify uses for which a radioactive source can be replaced with an equivalent (or improved) non-radioisotope alternative technologies that are already available in the market and could become available in the market as next-generation or emerging technologies in the next 10 years, and assess applications for which alternative technologies do not currently exist, but which could significantly mitigate the risk associated with current technologies using high-risk radionuclides.

The assessment will examine domestic and international developments in radioactive source applications and feasible alternative technologies. In addition, the assessment will use criteria to assess the overall technical feasibility and maturity of those technologies, including the Department of Energy Technology Readiness Level (TRL). Moreover, the assessment of alternative technologies will evaluate their attractiveness and practicality to organizations in consideration of adopting or transitioning to them.

Organizer

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
Phone:
202-334-2000
View Organizer Website