Los Alamos National Laboratory

Los Alamos National Laboratory

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Careful with Hot Objects

The Off-site Source Recovery Program (OSRP), a coordinated effort between the Los Alamos and Idaho national laboratories celebrates 20 years rounding up sealed radioactive sources that are no longer in use.
August 1, 2018
Careful with Hot Objects

Radioactive sources are manufactured, used, and properly disposed of. But if that last part gets overlooked, don’t worry; OSRP will take care of it.

“In the 1990s, several Los Alamos scientists had the foresight to recognize that something had to be done.”- Becky Coel-Roback, Los Alamos program manager for the OSRP

The world has been producing sealed radioactive sources for more than a century. Some are found in government research laboratories. Some are found in medical centers. Some are found in university science classrooms. Some are found in industrial or agricultural settings. Many are no longer needed or no longer suitable for their original purpose—and may have dropped off the radar of those tasked with managing them. But they’re still out there, posing a potential health risk to the public. And if they fell into the wrong hands, they could be incorporated into a radiological dispersion device, also known as a dirty bomb.

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