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What is the OSRP?

The Off-Site Source Recovery Program (OSRP) was created in the late 1990's by the Department of Energy (DOE) under the Office of Environmental Management. OSRP was initially tasked with recovering the known backlog of excess, abandoned, orphan, and unwanted radioactive sealed sources from licensees across the U.S. to meet a congressional mandate of 5,000 sources recovered by April 2004. This included sources from the commercial sector and sources from state agencies who were holding at-risk sources. The sealed sources addressed by this phase of the Program contained radioactive elements known as actinides; principally Plutonium-238, Plutonium-239, and Americium-241.

Owing to new concerns about the security of excess radioactive material, the U.S. Congress provided OSRP with additional federal funding in September 2002. In October 2003, responsibility for the Program moved to DOE's National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Office of Global Threat Reduction, expanding its scope of isotopes of concern to be consistent with international efforts to reduce threat from radiological sources. This transition expanded the OSRP mission to include beta-and gamma-emitting sources. Sources containing Cesium-137, Cobalt-60, Stronium-90, Iridium-192, and Radium-226 may now be possible candidates for OSRP (or DOE) recovery and management. In 2014, responsibility for the Program moved to NNSA's Office of Global Material Security.

All unwanted sources should be registered, regardless of activity. OSRP will consider recovery on a case-by-case basis, or may attempt to assist by coordinating other recovery mechanisms.

Registration also does not imply nor guarantee that the program can assist with removal/disposition of all radioactive material.

Information provided on this website including hyperlinks, and email traffic of OSRP staff is not to be construed as an endorsement of any private or commercial entity.]

 

Management of Sources

Management of the beta/gamma nuclides utilizes commercially available recovery and storage capabilities and seeks commercial recycle options. Recovered sources with no recycle potential will be characterized for eventual disposal to eliminate potential residual threat. OSRP uses existing commercial brokers where available and appropriate; and use DOE disposal facilities for DOE-owned sources or for sources recovered for national security purposes. OSRP is currently focusing on recovery and storage of high-risk beta/gamma sources (greater than 100 Ci) and transuranic sources. OSRP has established a commercial capability for near-term recovery operations with limited interim storage and/or recycle. Management of sources containing these expansion nuclides at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) will be restricted to those sources requiring movement for national security, as directed by DOE/NNSA, when utilization of commercial facilities for storage or disposal is not available.

 

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