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Nuclear Security Interface Considerations for Regaining Control of Discovered Nuclear and Radioactive Materials...

by Michael C Shannon, Tyrone C Harris, William J Petoskey, Marc R Fialkoff, Liz A Dallas
Publication Type
Conference Paper
Book Title
INMM Annual Meeting Proceedings
Publication Date
Publisher Location
United States of America
Conference Name
Institute of Nuclear Materials Management (INMM) INMM Annual Meeting
Conference Location
N/A, Tennessee, United States of America
Conference Sponsor
Nuclear Smuggling Detection and Deterrence (NSDD)
Conference Date

Recognizing that regaining control of orphan radioactive and nuclear material is challenging, the international community has developed requirements and guidance to support countries in addressing the problem. However, limited guidance is available on the practical nuclear security related issues that arise when nuclear or other radioactive material out of regulatory control (MORC) is encountered and efforts are undertaken to regain control. For example, the IAEA Specific Safety Guide No. SSG-19, “National Strategy for Regaining Control over Orphan Sources and Improving Control over Vulnerable Sources”, provides recommendations on a methodology for establishing a national strategy for regaining control of orphan sources. However, except for Pu239 in radioactive sources, nuclear material is outside the scope of this safety guide, and practical safety and security measures below the level of national strategy are not discussed adequately.

This paper discusses the interfaces between the stakeholder groups and the responsibilities of each when encountering common scenarios that deal with MORC transitioning to regulatory control. The stakeholders include but are not limited to individuals who encounter MORC, and providers of formal and informal transport systems, and traditional and ad hoc storage solutions. This paper explores practical legal, financial, and institutional issues that hinder implementation of required safety and security practices. This paper also offers strategies that can be implemented on the individual, organizational, national, and international level to regain control of MORC.