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Regulations, Guidance, and Communications

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NRC's regulations are found in Chapter I of Title 10, "Energy," of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR). Chapter I is divided into Parts 1 through 199. The following are the principal parts governing the nuclear power plant operators.

  • Part 55 – Operators' Licenses
  • Part 50 – Domestic Licensing of Production and Utilization Facilities
  • Part 52 – Licenses, Certifications, and Approvals for Nuclear Power Plant

In addition, the NRC Regulatory Agenda (NUREG-0936) is a semiannual compilation of brief descriptions of all rulemaking actions.

The NRC welcomes Public Involvement in Rulemaking, and invites the public to comment on proposed rules and policies, licensing actions, and draft technical documents. Toward that end, the agency announces public comment opportunities in the Federal Register, on our Documents for Comment page, and sometimes through news releases. To comment on a proposed rule or petition for rulemaking, please e-mail Rulemaking.Comments@nrc.gov or see Regulations.gov.

See also History of Rulemaking Activities for Operator Licensing.

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Regulatory guides (RGs) are issued in ten divisions and are intended to aid licensees in implementing regulations.The guides most applicable to licensing operators are in Power Reactors (Division 1).

The following guides in these divisions are the ones most relevant to licensed operators.

  • RG 1.8 – Qualification and Training of Personnel for Nuclear Power Plants
  • RG 1.114 – Guidance to Operators at the Controls and to Senior Operators in the Control Room of a Nuclear Power Unit
  • RG 1.134 – Medical Evaluation of Licensed Personnel for Nuclear Power Plants
  • RG 1.149 – Nuclear Power Plant Simulation Facilities for Use in Operator License Examinations.

Each regulatory guide is listed by division number; title; date issued, and revisions, if applicable. A guide available at this site has an underscored number. Draft regulatory guides are listed separately. Many regulatory guides are available in NRC's Agency Document Access and Management System (ADAMS).

NUREGs are NRC published reports in the NUREG-series, covering a variety of regulatory, technical, and administrative subjects. The following publications are the ones most relevant to the operator licensing process:

  • Operator Licensing Examination Standards for Power Reactors (NUREG 1021, Revision 10) became effective for all examinations administrated after July 2, 2015. NUREG 1021 is currently being revised (the draft is available to view at the link) and is expected to be issued in August, 2016.
  • Knowledge and Abilities Catalog for Nuclear Power Plant Operators: Pressurized Water Reactors (NUREG-1122, Revision 2, Supplement 1) became effective for all examinations that are administered after April 16, 2008.
  • Knowledge and Abilities Catalog for Nuclear Power Plant Operators: Boiling Water Reactors (NUREG-1123, Revision 2, Supplement 1) became effective for all examinations that are administered after April 16, 2008.
  • Training Review Criteria and Procedures (NUREG-1220, Revision 1).
  • Answers to Questions at Public Meetings Regarding Implementation of Title 10, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 55 on Operators' Licenses (NUREG-1262). The question and answer portion of the document is searchable using the "Edit / Find" function of Adobe Acrobat.

Additional guidance pertaining to operator licensing is included in the following:

  1. "Clarification Guidance for SRO Only Questions"
  2. "Supplemental Guidance For Writing Effective Multiple Choice Questions"
  3. "Checklist for Transmitting and Receiving NRC Exam Material over the Internet"

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Generic Communications are NRC's primary method of sending information to specific classes of licensees. See our page on Generic Communications Related to Operator Licensing. For information about the types of generic communications see:

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Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, May 05, 2016