On 22 October 2014, the CEO of ARPANSA decided to issue an amendment to the facility licence for the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) to operate a controlled facility (the Open Pool Australian Lightwater (OPAL) Reactor) at the ANSTO Lucas Heights Science and Technology Centre.
Download a copy of the CEO’s decision:


In making his decision, the CEO took into consideration the documentation submitted by ANSTO in support of the application in addition to:

The licence is subject to conditions as specified in section 35 of the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998.

The CEO of ARPANSA has imposed the standard licence condition requiring quarterly reporting under section 35 (1) (c). The CEO has imposed a licence condition requiring the Licence Holder to submit a plan to implement the actions resulting from the first PSR in a form acceptable to the CEO of ARPANSA, and report on progress in implementing the plan on a six-monthly basis. The plan must include provisions for analysis of interdependencies between safety factors and a program to support continuous improvement in the safety culture, including regular surveys by an independent organisation of the safety culture within the operating organisation.

The CEO of ARPANSA has removed Licence Condition 7 and Licence Condition 13, which related to the safety culture and PSR of the OPAL reactor. He has now imposed a new licence condition requiring the Licence Holder to carry out a PSR that re-examines the safety of the OPAL Reactor, taking into account operating experience and international best practice in radiation protection and nuclear safety. A detailed plan for the PSR must be submitted to the CEO of ARPANSA no later than 30 November 2019. The plan and the subsequent PSR must follow the relevant regulatory guidance and must include an international peer review of safety of the OPAL reactor. A comprehensive report and supporting documentation on the findings of the PSR and resulting Action Plan must be submitted to the CEO of ARPANSA no later than 30 November 2021. The Licence Holder must subsequently perform PSRs at time intervals decided by the CEO of ARPANSA.

The licence remains in force until it is cancelled or suspended under section 38 of the Act or until it is surrendered under section 39 of the Act.

Looking for more information?

If you’d like to know more about the applications or the process for review see The Open Pool Australian Lightwater (OPAL) Reactor.

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