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«Safety of Conversion Facilities and Uranium Enrichment Facilities Specific Safety Guide No. SSG-5 IAEA SAFETY RELATED PUBLICATIONS IAEA SAFETY ...»

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IAEA Safety Standards

for protecting people and the environment

Safety of Conversion

Facilities and Uranium

Enrichment Facilities

Specific Safety Guide

No. SSG-5



Under the terms of Article III of its Statute, the IAEA is authorized to establish

or adopt standards of safety for protection of health and minimization of danger to life

and property, and to provide for the application of these standards.

The publications by means of which the IAEA establishes standards are issued in the IAEA Safety Standards Series. This series covers nuclear safety, radiation safety, transport safety and waste safety. The publication categories in the series are Safety Fundamentals, Safety Requirements and Safety Guides.

Information on the IAEA’s safety standards programme is available at the IAEA Internet site http://www-ns.iaea.org/standards/ The site provides the texts in English of published and draft safety standards. The texts of safety standards issued in Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish, the IAEA Safety Glossary and a status report for safety standards under development are also available. For further information, please contact the IAEA at PO Box 100, 1400 Vienna, Austria.

All users of IAEA safety standards are invited to inform the IAEA of experience in their use (e.g. as a basis for national regulations, for safety reviews and for training courses) for the purpose of ensuring that they continue to meet users’ needs.

Information may be provided via the IAEA Internet site or by post, as above, or by email to Official.Mail@iaea.org.


The IAEA provides for the application of the standards and, under the terms of Articles III and VIII.C of its Statute, makes available and fosters the exchange of information relating to peaceful nuclear activities and serves as an intermediary among its Member States for this purpose.

Reports on safety and protection in nuclear activities are issued as Safety Reports, which provide practical examples and detailed methods that can be used in support of the safety standards.

Other safety related IAEA publications are issued as Radiological Assessment Reports, the International Nuclear Safety Group’s INSAG Reports, Technical Reports and TECDOCs. The IAEA also issues reports on radiological accidents, training manuals and practical manuals, and other special safety related publications. Security related publications are issued in the IAEA Nuclear Security Series.




Safety standards survey

The IAEA welcomes your response. Please see:


The following States are Members of the International Atomic Energy Agency:


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The Agency’s Statute was approved on 23 October 1956 by the Conference on the Statute of the IAEA held at United Nations Headquarters, New York; it entered into force on 29 July 1957. The Headquarters of the Agency are situated in Vienna. Its principal objective is “to accelerate and enlarge the contribution of atomic energy to peace, health and prosperity throughout the world’’.





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All IAEA scientific and technical publications are protected by the terms of the Universal Copyright Convention as adopted in 1952 (Berne) and as revised in 1972 (Paris). The copyright has since been extended by the World Intellectual Property Organization (Geneva) to include electronic and virtual intellectual property. Permission to use whole or parts of texts contained in IAEA publications in printed or electronic form must be obtained and is usually subject to royalty agreements. Proposals for non-commercial reproductions and translations are welcomed and considered on a case-by-case basis. Enquiries

should be addressed to the IAEA Publishing Section at:

Marketing and Sales Unit, Publishing Section International Atomic Energy Agency Vienna International Centre PO Box 100 1400 Vienna, Austria fax: +43 1 2600 29302 tel.: +43 1 2600 22417 email: sales.publications@iaea.org http://www.iaea.org/books

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1. Nuclear facilities — Safety measures. 2. Uranium enrichment — Safety measures. I. International Atomic Energy Agency. II. Series.

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The IAEA’s Statute authorizes the Agency to establish safety standards to protect health and minimize danger to life and property — standards which the IAEA must use in its own operations, and which a State can apply by means of its regulatory provisions for nuclear and radiation safety. A comprehensive body of safety standards under regular review, together with the IAEA’s assistance in their application, has become a key element in a global safety regime.

In the mid-1990s, a major overhaul of the IAEA’s safety standards programme was initiated, with a revised oversight committee structure and a systematic approach to updating the entire corpus of standards. The new standards that have resulted are of a high calibre and reflect best practices in Member States. With the assistance of the Commission on Safety Standards, the IAEA is working to promote the global acceptance and use of its safety standards.

Safety standards are only effective, however, if they are properly applied in practice. The IAEA’s safety services — which range in scope from engineering safety, operational safety, and radiation, transport and waste safety to regulatory matters and safety culture in organizations — assist Member States in applying the standards and appraise their effectiveness. These safety services enable valuable insights to be shared and I continue to urge all Member States to make use of them.

Regulating nuclear and radiation safety is a national responsibility, and many Member States have decided to adopt the IAEA’s safety standards for use in their national regulations. For the contracting parties to the various international safety conventions, IAEA standards provide a consistent, reliable means of ensuring the effective fulfilment of obligations under the conventions. The standards are also applied by designers, manufacturers and operators around the world to enhance nuclear and radiation safety in power generation, medicine, industry, agriculture, research and education.

The IAEA takes seriously the enduring challenge for users and regulators everywhere: that of ensuring a high level of safety in the use of nuclear materials and radiation sources around the world. Their continuing utilization for the benefit of humankind must be managed in a safe manner, and the IAEA safety standards are designed to facilitate the achievement of that goal.




Radioactivity is a natural phenomenon and natural sources of radiation are features of the environment. Radiation and radioactive substances have many beneficial applications, ranging from power generation to uses in medicine, industry and agriculture. The radiation risks to workers and the public and to the environment that may arise from these applications have to be assessed and, if necessary, controlled.

Activities such as the medical uses of radiation, the operation of nuclear installations, the production, transport and use of radioactive material, and the management of radioactive waste must therefore be subject to standards of safety.

Regulating safety is a national responsibility. However, radiation risks may transcend national borders, and international cooperation serves to promote and enhance safety globally by exchanging experience and by improving capabilities to control hazards, to prevent accidents, to respond to emergencies and to mitigate any harmful consequences.

States have an obligation of diligence and duty of care, and are expected to fulfil their national and international undertakings and obligations.

International safety standards provide support for States in meeting their obligations under general principles of international law, such as those relating to environmental protection. International safety standards also promote and assure confidence in safety and facilitate international commerce and trade.

A global nuclear safety regime is in place and is being continuously improved. IAEA safety standards, which support the implementation of binding international instruments and national safety infrastructures, are a cornerstone of this global regime. The IAEA safety standards constitute a useful tool for contracting parties to assess their performance under these international conventions.


The status of the IAEA safety standards derives from the IAEA’s Statute, which authorizes the IAEA to establish or adopt, in consultation and, where appropriate, in collaboration with the competent organs of the United Nations and with the specialized agencies concerned, standards of safety for protection of health and minimization of danger to life and property, and to provide for their application.

With a view to ensuring the protection of people and the environment from harmful effects of ionizing radiation, the IAEA safety standards establish fundamental safety principles, requirements and measures to control the radiation exposure of people and the release of radioactive material to the environment, to restrict the likelihood of events that might lead to a loss of control over a nuclear reactor core, nuclear chain reaction, radioactive source or any other source of radiation, and to mitigate the consequences of such events if they were to occur. The standards apply to facilities and activities that give rise to radiation risks, including nuclear installations, the use of radiation and radioactive sources, the transport of radioactive material and the management of radioactive waste.

Safety measures and security measures1 have in common the aim of protecting human life and health and the environment. Safety measures and security measures must be designed and implemented in an integrated manner so that security measures do not compromise safety and safety measures do not compromise security.

The IAEA safety standards reflect an international consensus on what constitutes a high level of safety for protecting people and the environment from harmful effects of ionizing radiation. They are issued in the IAEA Safety Standards Series, which has three categories (see Fig. 1).

Safety Fundamentals Safety Fundamentals present the fundamental safety objective and principles of protection and safety, and provide the basis for the safety requirements.

Safety Requirements An integrated and consistent set of Safety Requirements establishes the requirements that must be met to ensure the protection of people and the environment, both now and in the future. The requirements are governed by the objective and principles of the Safety Fundamentals. If the requirements are not met, measures must be taken to reach or restore the required level of safety. The format and style of the requirements facilitate their use for the establishment, in a harmonized manner, of a national regulatory framework.

The safety requirements use ‘shall’ statements together with statements of

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FIG. 1. The long term structure of the IAEA Safety Standards Series.

associated conditions to be met. Many requirements are not addressed to a specific party, the implication being that the appropriate parties are responsible for fulfilling them.

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