General License Registration and Tracking

The NRC registers and tracks general licensees that require registration.

For more information, see the following topics:


A generally licensed device is a device containing radioactive material that is typically used to detect, measure, gauge, or control the thickness, density, level, or chemical composition of various items. Examples of such devices are gas chromatographs (detector cells), density gauges, fill-level gauges, and static elimination devices. See the Frequently Asked Questions About General Licenses for more information.

A general licensee is a person or organization that acquires, uses, or possesses a generally licensed device and has received the device through an authorized transfer by the device manufacturer/distributor or by change of company ownership where the device remains in use at a particular location.

NRC decided to register and track generally licensed devices because the NRC wanted to increase control and accountability of generally licensed devices and to prevent them from becoming orphan sources.

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Process Description

The general licensee does not initiate the registration of their devices. The registration process is initiated by the NRC. When the distributor of the generally licensed device makes its quarterly report to the NRC of distributions to general licensees, the information is entered into the General License Tracking System (GLTS). The GLTS is used to create the registration form that is mailed to the general licensee annually along with instructions for completing the form. The mailings are sent out alphabetically on a monthly basis to accommodate companies with several general licensees.

Two Federal Register Notices were issued to describe the rulemaking associated with this new system and registration process:

The new rules went into effect on February 16, 2001.

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Additional Regulations and Guidance

  • Section 31.5 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations - NRC's current regulations concerning general licenses
  • NUREG-1556, Volume 16, "Consolidated Guidance About Materials Licenses: Program-Specific Guidance About Licenses Authorizing Distribution to General Licensees"

See also Medical, Industrial, and Academic Uses of Nuclear Materials Regulations, Guidance, and Communications page and the frequently asked question, What are the requirements for a general license?

Additional Documents and Other Resources

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