Radioactive sources are used for a variety of purposes, e.g. in medical treatment and diagnosis, research applications, measurement, testing, detection and calibration in industry, educational activities in colleges and universities etc. As part of its mission, ONDRAF/NIRAS, the Belgian Radioactive Waste Management Agency, draws up an inventory of all radioactive substances and nuclear installations on the Belgian territory. In recent years this inventory has been used to launch specific campaigns for the collection of different types of radioactive sources. In addition to this, the Royal Decree of 23 May 2006 concerning the transposition into Belgian law of the Spent High Activity Sealed Sources and the Management of Orphan Sources Directive of the EU (2003/122/EURATOM) has led to an increase in the number of requests addressed to ONDRAF/NIRAS for the collection of these types of radioactive waste and to an intensified collaboration between ONDRAF/NIRAS and the Belgian Safety Authority FANC/AFCN towards an effective management of orphan sources. Specific properties of these spent sources such as their activity, external dose rate, weight, size and/or their invalid special form certificate may complicate the transport and final treatment and conditioning of this type of waste and that is why these operations require careful attention. An overview of the radioactive sources already collected as radioactive waste or still present in the nuclear installations, different cases and problems encountered are presented in this paper, as well as the waste management options adopted by ONDRAF/NIRAS to deal with this type of waste.

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