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

See also, information on all NRC Rules and Petitions.

The NRC welcomes Public Involvement in Rulemaking, and invites the public to comment on proposed rules and policies, licensing actions, and draft technical documents. We announce public comment opportunities in the Federal Register and on our Documents for Comment page.

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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.
  • RG 1.206 – Combined License Applications for Nuclear Power Plant.

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 12), was issued on September 17, 2021. Per 10 CFR 55.40, NUREG-1021, Revision 12, took effect for all examinations administered on or after March 17, 2022.
  • Knowledge and Abilities Catalog for Nuclear Power Plant Operators: Pressurized Water Reactors, NUREG-1122. Revision 3 took effect September 25, 2020.
  • Knowledge and Abilities Catalog for Nuclear Power Plant Operators: Boiling Water Reactors, NUREG-1123. Revision 3 took effect September 25, 2020.
  • Knowledge and Abilities Catalog for Nuclear Power Plant Operators: Westinghouse AP1000 Pressurized-Water Reactors (NUREG-2103) became effective for all examinations that are administered after April, 2012.
  • 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).

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

  1. OLMC-500, “Processing Requests for Administrative Reviews and Demands for Hearings”
  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, March 31, 2022