ASN Report 2018

Public Health Code or, failing this, for a maximum period of five years, that is to say until 4 September 2019 at the latest. Before any change relating to the license is made, it shall either be notified to ASN or form the subject of a new license application, depending on the case. Only establishments holding unsealed radioactive substances or managing radioactive waste in quantities exceeding 10 m 3 for either of these activities are subject to the ICPE System (excluding the medical sector and particle accelerators). Any sealed radioactive sources also possessed or used by these establishments are regulated by ASN under the Public Health Code. Nuclear materials are subject to specific regulations provided for in Article L. 1333-1 and following of the Defence Code. Application of these regulations is overseen by the Minister of Defence for nuclear materials intended for defence needs, and by the Minister in charge of Energy for nuclear materials intended for any other use. 2.2  ̶  Unjustified or prohibited activities 2.2.1  –  Application of the ban on the intentional addition of radionuclides in consumer goods and construction products The Public Health Code states “ that any addition of radionuclides […] to consumer goods and construction products is prohibited” (Article R. 1333-2). Thus, the trading of accessories containing sources of tritium such as watches, key-rings, hunting equipment (sighting devices), navigation equipment (bearing compasses) or river fishing equipment (strike detectors) is specifically prohibited. Article R. 1333-4 of this same Code states that waivers to these prohibitions can, if justified by the advantages they bring, be granted by order of the Minister responsible for Health and, depending on the case, by the Minister responsible for Consumption or the Minister responsible for Construction, after consulting ASN and HCSP (French High Public Health Council). ASN considers that this mechanism of granting waivers to the regulations must remain the exception. It was implemented for the first time in 2011 for a waiver request concerning the use of a neutron analysis device in several cement works (Order of 18 November 2011 from the Ministers responsible for Health and Construction, ASN opinion 2011-AV-0105 of 11 January 2011 and ASN opinion 2011-AV-0124 of 7 July 2011). It was then used in 2014 for light bulbs containing very small quantities of radioactive substances (krypton-85, thorium-232 or tritium), serving mainly for applications requiring very high intensity lighting such as public places, work places, or for certain vehicles (Order of 12 December 2014 of the Ministers responsible for Health and Construction, ASN opinion 2014‑AV-0211 of 18 September 2014). A waiver request to allow the addition of radionuclides (tritium) in certain watches was also denied (Order of 12 December 2014, ASN opinion 2014-AV-0210 of 18 September 2014). The list of consumer goods and construction products concerned by an ongoing waiver request or for which a waiver has been granted is published on the website of the French High Committee for Transparency and Information on Nuclear Security (HCTISN). In 2017, the waiver for the use of a neutron analysis device was renewed for ten years for two cement works, the third cement works mentioned in the initial Order of 2011 having closed (Order of 19 April 2017 of the Ministers responsible for Health and Construction respectively, ASN opinion 2017-AV‑0292 of 7 March 2017). In 2018, two new waiver applications (from a cement works and the company building the Lyon‑Turin tunnel) were submitted to the Ministry responsible for the Environment, which then asked ASN for is opinion (examination in progress). 2.2.2  –  Application of the justification principle for existing activities The justification of existing activities must be re-assessed periodically in the light of current knowledge and technological changes in accordance with the principle described in point 2.4.1. If the activities are no longer justified by the benefits they bring, or with respect to other non-ionising technologies that bring comparable benefits, they must be withdrawn from the market. A transitional period for definitive withdrawal from the market may be necessary, depending on the technical and economic context, particularly when a technological substitution is necessary. • Smoke detectors containing radioactive sources Devices containing radioactive sources have been used for several decades to detect smoke in buildings, as part of firefighting policy. Several types of radionuclides have been used (americium-241, plutonium-238, radium-226). The activity of the most recent sources used does not exceed 37 kBq, and the structure of the detector, in normal use, prevents any release of radioactive substances into the environment. New non-ionising technologies have gradually developed for smoke detection. Optical devices now provide comparable detection quality, and can therefore satisfy the regulatory and industrial standard fire detection requirements. ASN therefore considers that smoke detection devices using radioactive sources are no longer justified and that the seven million Ionisation Chamber Smoke Detectors (ICSDs) installed on 300,000 sites must be progressively replaced. The regulatory framework governing their withdrawal was put in place by the Order of 18 November 2011 and the 2 ASN resolutions 2011-DC-0252 and 2011-DC-0253 of 21 December 2011. This regulatory framework aims at: ∙ ∙ planning the removal operations over ten years; ∙ ∙ supervising the maintenance or removal operations that necessitate certain precautions with regard to worker radiation protection; ∙ ∙ preventing any uncontrolled removals and organising the collection operations in order to avoid detectors being directed to an inappropriate disposal route, or even simply being abandoned; ∙ ∙ monitoring the pool of detectors. Seven years after the implementation of the new regulatory system for ICSD removal and maintenance activities, as at 31 December 2018 ASN had delivered 350 notification acknowledgements and 7 national licenses (delivered to industrial groups with a total of 107 agencies) for ICSD removal and fire safety system maintenance activities. Furthermore, five companies are authorised to perform ICSD decommissioning operations, thereby guaranteeing a disposal route for all the existing detectors. ASN report on the state of nuclear safety and radiation protection in France in 2018  237 08 – SOURCES OF IONISING RADIATION AND THEIR INDUSTRIAL, VETERINARY AND RESEARCH APPLICATIONS 08