United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Regulatory Responsibilities for Byproduct Materials in Non-Power Reactors

HPPOS-218 PDR-9111220023

See the memorandum from D. M. Crutchfield to F. J. Congel (and others) dated March 8, 1988.

Byproduct materials within non-power reactors is covered under the reactor license. NMSS does not normally issue separate licenses which authorize possession of licensed material within an operating reactor facility. All byproduct material inserted into or removed from the reactor, is covered by the reactor license while the material is within the facility. The facility boundaries for non-power reactors are normally defined in the FSAR or TS, and exceptions should be referred immediately to HQ.

In a memorandum dated June 8, 1987, Region IV requested guidance for determining cases where licensed material in a non-power reactor facility may be covered by an NRC license or an Agreement State license, rather than the reactor license. This issue becomes important in determining compliance and issuing notices of violation involving licensed material in a reactor facility. All Regions were asked to comment on this issue, and after consideration of these comments, NRR provided the following guidance. The guidance was coordinated with NMSS, GPA, and OGC.

  1. Generic guidance related to this issue is contained in Inspection Manual Chapter 2882, Appendices 1 and 2. Normally, material within a non-power reactor facility will generally be assumed to be possessed by the reactor licensee, unless there is prior documentation approved by NRC or some other clear demonstration that the licensed material is covered under another license.
  2. Consistent with (1) above, NMSS does not normally issue separate licenses which authorize possession of licensed material within an operating reactor facility. If a reactor facility license is silent with regard to possession of byproduct material, it should be amended. NRC normally exercises exclusive federal jurisdiction within operating reactor facilities.
  3. All byproduct material which is to be inserted into a reactor, or which is removed from the reactor, must be covered by the reactor license while the material is within the facility.
  4. The facility boundaries for a non-power reactor are normally defined by the Safety Analysis Report or Technical Specifications. In the absence of identifiable facility boundaries, the Regions should establish a facility boundary with the license for compliance purposes, and the boundary should be specified in the TS or FSAR.
  5. As indicated in Manual Chapter 2882, Appendix 2, there are exceptions to the above guidelines, and specific cases can be complex. Questionable cases should be referred to HQ for resolution along with a proposed course of action.

Regulatory references: 10 CFR 50, Technical Specifications

Subject codes: 3.3, 11.5, 12.9

Applicability: Non-Power Reactors

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, June 25, 2015