Licensing of Viken Detection Portable XRF Analyzers with Radioactive Sources

To use and possess a portable XRF device containing radioactive material in the United States, one must be licensed.  There are two types of licenses that are available in most areas of the country: one is called general license, and the other is called a specific license.

Specific Licensing

In jurisdictions where a specific license is required for isotope-based instruments, a specific license must be applied for and obtained prior to delivery of the device.  In most states, if you are going to get specifically licensed, you will want to begin the application process at least 6 to 8 weeks prior to your expected delivery date.  The best approach to applying for a specific license is to contact your state regulator (or the NRC if you are in a non-agreement state) and ask for copies of the application form and any application guidance documents they might have available.  Review the application requirements and identify any supporting material or information you may need from Viken Detection or elsewhere.  Your Viken Detection analyzer sales representative may have some tools (e.g., documents, guidance) to help you meet the application requirements of a specific state.

General Licensing

Many of our customers acquire a Viken Detection portable XRF device under the provisions of a general license  (GL).  A GL is a license that is issued automatically to the customer by the regulator in their jurisdiction.  There is no license application to fill out, and no license document is issued.  Viken Detection submits a report to your regulatory agency within 120 days of your receipt of the device identifying you as a new general licensee.  If the device is distributed under a general license, then there is a label on the device that describes it as being generally licensed and contains basic information about the license requirements.   

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has a number of helpful web sites dedicated to providing you with the information and tools you will need to operate in compliance under your general license.  If you have questions about general licensing, these web sites are a great place to start.  

Transportation of Viken Detection Portable XRF analyzers with Radioactive Sources

Radioactive material is considered a hazardous material (HAZMAT) for the purposes of transport.  This means that the transportation of a portable XRF device containing radioactive material is regulated.  In the United States, the regulatory authority for HAZMAT transport is the Department of Transportation (DOT).  The Federal hazardous materials transportation law (49 U.S.C. § 5101 et seq.), is the basic statute regulating the transportation of hazardous materials in the United States.  This law requires the training of ALL HAZMAT employees.  The purpose is to increase a HAZMAT employee's safety awareness and be an essential element in reducing HAZMAT incidents.  You can find additional information about the DOT's training requirement on their website using the following links:

  • DOT Training Requirement 
  • DOT Training Q&A