Persons who use or handle radioactive substances, operate ionising radiation apparatus, or possess a radiation source in South Australia are required to hold a radiation licence issued by the EPA.
Applications for these licences can be made online.
Regulations allow certain classes of persons to handle or operate radiation sources without a licence.
You will need to have one of the following prerequisites before a radiation licence can be granted:
- Holding a prescribed qualification – prerequisite information are explained during the online application process.
- Pass an exam set by the EPA.
- Mutual recognition – if you have a radiation licence issued in another Australian jurisdiction you may apply under mutual recognition provisions. You can provide evidence of equivalent licences during the online application process.
Note that for radiation sources including apparatus, sealed radioactive sources and premises in which unsealed radioactive substances are handled or kept, a licence to possess a radiation source will be required in addition to licences to operate or use the radiation source.
A radiation management plan must be submitted as part of an application for a licence to possess a radiation source.
Listed below are some of the licensing requirements and forms. More forms are also available.
Registering radiation apparatus
Ionising radiation apparatus are required to be registered in the name of the owner. A Licence to Possess a Radiation Source must be obtained before apparatus can be registered.
Ionising radiation apparatus must meet prescribed design, installation and shielding requirements. The registration process includes verification that the apparatus complies with these requirements.
Compliance verification of shielding and diagnostic X-ray apparatus used for dental, medical, veterinary, and chiropractic radiography is carried out by an EPA accredited tester. To find an EPA accredited tester of diagnostic X-ray apparatus, please refer to the list of accredited testers or contact the EPA.
Regulation 59 of the Radiation Protection and Control (Ionising Radiation) Regulations 2015 exempts certain classes of radiation apparatus from registration. For advice on your registration requirements, please consult your company radiation safety manual or discuss with your radiation safety officer/adviser, or contact the EPA.
Registering sealed radiation sources
Sealed sources are commonly used in bore hole logging, gauging, civil construction, agricultural, medical, industrial and scientific sectors. Most sealed radiation source capsules must be registered.
Sealed sources must meet prescribed design requirements and maintain their integrity for their intended use. The registration process verifies prescribed design requirements and maintain their integrity for their intended use.
Regulation 142 of the Radiation Protection and Control (Ionising Radiation) Regulations 2015 exempts some types of sealed radiation sources from registration. For advice on your registration requirements, please discuss with your radiation safety officer/adviser, or contact the EPA.
Applications to register a sealed radioactive source must include all sealed source certificates, details of the design of the source capsule and any storage container. Where relevant, special form certificates and Type B package certificates must also be supplied. A new or updated radiation management plan must be submitted with an application for a new type of sealed source.
Registering premises where unsealed radioactive substances are handled or kept
Any premises where unsealed radioactive substances are handled or kept must be registered. Generally this applies to:
- laboratories handling radioactive materials
- nuclear medicine and medical imaging involving isotopes.
- mineral testing or storage of geological/core samples containing radioactive ore
- premises storing or handling items containing naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM).
Applying as an accredited tester of diagnostic X-ray apparatus
Persons conducting compliance testing services must hold an accreditation.
Accreditation as a tester of diagnostic X-ray apparatus permits a person to undertake activities to assess and issue certificates of compliance for diagnostic X-ray apparatus.
The EPA accredits persons to assess compliance of dental, mammography, plain radiography, computed tomography, and fluoroscopy X-ray apparatus, and shielding of medical, veterinary, and chiropractic X-ray apparatus.
Facility, mining and mineral processing licensing
Licences are required to construct, establish, control, operate, manage, and decommission a radiation facility or a mining or mineral processing facility with radioactive ore present.
A radiation facility can include:
- A large irradiator utilising a radioactive substance
- A particle accelerator
- A premises which produces, stores or uses a sealed or unsealed radioactive substance with greater than the prescribed quantity, examples include:
- – Bulk storage of NORM
- – Pilot plants performing metallurgical testing.
Mineral projects which may require a developmental testing or operational licence include uranium and mineral sand mining. Some minerals (eg copper) may be associated with quantities of naturally occurring radioactive material that trigger the requirement for licensing.
For advice on your licensing requirements, please consult your company radiation safety manual or discuss with your radiation safety officer/adviser, or contact the EPA.
Supplying, installing, maintaining and disposing radiation apparatus and sources
Persons who sell, install, maintain or dispose of radiation apparatus or radiation sources in South Australia are required to provide a notification to the EPA.
The forms required for notification are:
- Notification by owner of sale/disposal of an x-ray apparatus (Regulation 55)
- Notification of sale of registrable device, registered sealed radioactive source and radioactive substances (Regulations 117, 118, 120 & 121)
- Notification of sale, installation or relocation of an X-ray unit (Section 32)
- Application to dispose of sealed radioactive source (regulations 133 & 135)
The requirements for activities are given below.
|Install fixed radiation apparatus||Notify EPA||7 days prior|
|Deliver mobile radiation apparatus||Notify EPA||Within 7 days|
|Sell, replace or dispose of X-ray apparatus or major components||Notify EPA||Within 7 days|
|Supplier holding apparatus as inoperable stock||None||None|
|Supplier holding apparatus as operable equipment||Registration + Licence to possess||Prior|
|Replace a major component||Notify EPA||Within 7 days|
|Dispose of sealed radioactive source||EPA approval||Prior|
|Sell, install, or maintain a radioactive substance or a device that contains a radioactive substance||Notify EPA||Prior|
- A licence is not required to carry on a business of selling radiation apparatus.
- A supplier who receives an order for an apparatus must provide a notification to the EPA of the sale. They are also required to provide the new owner with application forms to register the apparatus and an for a licence to operate an ionising radiation apparatus.
Replacing a major component includes:
- the X-ray tube housing in a medical, dental or veterinary apparatus
- the high voltage generator in a medical, dental or veterinary apparatus
- the high voltage generator, tube housing or sample changer in an X-ray analysis apparatus.
If you are disposing of the apparatus such that it will no longer be used, you must ensure that the apparatus is disabled in a manner that would require specialist knowledge to make the apparatus operable again. This may require the services of a suitably qualified technician or engineer.