United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Byproduct Materials Sub-Arena

Byproduct materials comprise one of two sub-arenas that the staff of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) identified in considering which areas of the materials safety arena to target for greater use of risk information. This page summarizes the following aspects of this sub-arena:

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Utilize risk information on a case-by-case basis for byproduct material regulation, licensing, and oversight.

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NUREG/CR-6642, "Risk Analysis and Evaluation of Regulatory Options for Nuclear Byproduct Material Systems," documents an assessment of risks for various byproduct material systems. (This report is not publicly available.) The assessment was used to support NRC staff activities, as described in SECY-00-0048.

In June 2001, the NRC published NUREG-1717, "Systematic Radiological Assessment of Exemptions for Source and Byproduct Material," which documents the staff's assessment of doses associated with byproduct and source material exemptions. NUREG-1717 also includes dose assessments for certain devices that are currently used under general or specific licenses that have been identified as candidates for use under exemptions. In addition, staff activities identified in SECY-07-0147, "Response to U.S. Government Accountability Office Recommendations and Other Recommendations to Address Security Issues in the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Materials Program," will address possible revisions to the agency's regulatory framework.

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The staff has established the following goals for risk-informed and performance-based activities in this sub-arena:

  • Continue making incremental improvement (as practicable) to enhance the risk-informed and performance-based nature of rulemaking and guidance development, licensing, and oversight activities for byproduct materials.
  • Encourage the industry and NRC licensees to use a risk-informed and performance-based approach in demonstrating compliance with the NRC's risk/dose criteria.

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List of Risk-Informed and Performance-Based Activities

This list shows the ongoing licensing initiatives, projects, and activities that the staff of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has targeted for greater use of risk information in the Byproduct Materials Sub-Arena within the Materials Safety Arena:

Inspection Manual Chapter 2800, "Materials Inspection Program"

Summary Description

The completed revision to IMC 2800 in FY 2017 allowed the addition of more flexible and logical extensions to the time between inspections, i.e., inspection intervals for material licensees. This revision included: (1) increasing the current 25 percent buffer to 50 percent for inspection timeliness; (2) extending the initial inspection period if licensees are not in possession of material; and (3) allowing extensions of inspection intervals based on good performance on a case-by-case basis.

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Page Last Reviewed/Updated Wednesday, January 29, 2020