What is PSI doing on Radioactive Devices?

In January 2011 the Product Stewardship Institute, along with the US EPA, started next phase of the Product Stewardship Approach to Implement Alternative Technologies to Replace Radioactive Sources in Industrial Devices and Applications project which is centered around updating the "Radioactive Materials Product Stewardship: A Background Report for the National Dialogue on Radioactive Materials Product Stewardship.” The report describes the use of radionuclide gauges, technologies that can perform equivalent functions to the radionuclide gauges, advances in industry’s use of alternative devices, stakeholder attitudes regarding alternatives, and the potential for expanded adoption of alternative technologies.

Stakeholder Meetings and Calls

Stakeholder groups from government, industry and non-governmental organizations have been working for many years on issues associated with the improved management of nuclear fixed gauges and tritium exit signs. They have been involved in working groups, education campaigns, collection programs, and other initiatives to address management issues associated with devices containing radioactive materials.

Projects and Initiatives

PSI has managed two projects for the radioactive devices issue: the Tritium Exit Sign Stewardship and Alternative Technologies for Industrial Radioactive Gauges projects. The Tritium Exit Sign Stewardship project focuses on the evaluation of the management and disposal of self-luminous or tritium exit signs as well as the relevant product stewardship issues associated with these types of products. The Alternative Technologies for Industrial Radioactive Gauges project evaluated the potential to reduce or eliminate the use of radioactive materials at manufacturing facilities. PSI conducted extensive interviews and stakeholder outreach to identify the level of awareness of alternatives to radioactive devices, and barriers to the adoption of alternative technology. For this project, PSI identified several barriers to adoption including: a low level of awareness of problems associated with sealed source devices and the availability of alternatives, alternative technologies is a low priority for companies owing to the lack of pressure from the public or policymakers to change technologies, and that users of radioactive devices view the issue as a personnel/workplace safety issue rather than an environmental issue.

Get Involved

For inquiries regarding the Radioactive Devices Project, please contact Scott Cassel at (617) 236-4822 or scott@productstewardship.us.

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