Key messages

  • A radiation facility is a premises used to house, possess, store or use any high consequence sealed sources or high consequence group of sealed sources.
  • A radiation facility construction licence is a special type of licence issued by the Secretary of the department that allows the construction of radiation facility or the use of property as radiation facility.
  • To apply for a radiation facility construction licence you need to complete an application form and submit together with the relevant prerequisite information.
  • After the construction of the radiation facility, you must apply for and obtain a management licence before you acquire any radiation sources.

The Radiation Act 2005 (the Act) places significant obligations onto management licence holders who are authorised to possess or transport high consequence sealed sources or high consequence groups of sealed sources. If you are not sure whether the sealed sources that you propose to acquire meet these definitions then you are strongly advised to contact the department to discuss your proposals.

Section 14 of the Act prohibits the construction of radiation facilities in certain cases. The Act states that an owner or occupier must not:

  1. Construct a radiation facility on land that they own or occupy unless they hold a facility construction licence, that is in force, that allows them to construct a radiation facility; or
  2. Permit or allow another person to construct a radiation facility on land that they own or occupy unless the other person holds a facility construction licence, that is in force, in relation to the radiation facility to be constructed; or
  3. Change the use of land that they own or occupy to use for a radiation facility unless they hold a facility construction licence, that is in force, that allows them to use that land for a radiation facility; or
  4. Change the use of a building that they own or occupy to use as a radiation facility unless they hold a facility construction licence, that is in force, that allows them to use that building as a radiation facility.

What is a radiation facility?

A radiation facility is defined in the Radiation Regulations 2017 to include a premises used or proposed to be used to house, possess, store or permit the use of any high consequence sealed sources or high consequence group of sealed sources.

What is a high consequence sealed source?

This term is defined in the Act and is explained in the practice note.

What is a high consequence group of sealed sources?

This term is defined in the Act and is explained in the practice note.

What is a radiation facility construction licence?

A radiation facility construction licence is a special type of licence issued by the Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services.

It permits the licence holder to:

  1. construct a radiation facility on land that they own or occupy, or
  2. permit or allow another person to construct a radiation facility on land that they own or occupy, or
  3. change the use of land that they own or occupy to use for a radiation facility, or
  4. change the use of a building that they own or occupy to use as a radiation facility.

What are the prerequisites for a radiation construction licence?

General Documents

  1. When a person is submitting an application for a facility construction licence, or an application to vary an existing facility construction licence the person submitting the application must provide the following:
    1. An evidence of identity document that establishes the legal existence of the legal entity (e.g. Certificate of Registration of a Company issued by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission displaying the Australian Company Number).
    2. A document showing the name of the Director of the company (e.g. Current Company Extract issued by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission).
    3. A letter of authority from the Director of the company that both authorises the person to lodge an application for a facility construction licence on behalf of the legal entity and nominates the person to be the contact in relation to the proposed radiation facility.
  2. When a person is submitting an application for a facility construction licence or an application to vary an existing facility construction licence on behalf of another person, the person submitting the application or the notification must provide the following:
    1. A letter of authority from the proposed licence holder that both authorises the person to lodge an application for a facility construction licence and nominates the person to be the contact in relation to the proposed radiation practice(s).

Specific Documents

  1. A description of the radiation facility to be constructed or used. This description must include the following:
    1. The location where the proposed radiation facility is to be constructed or used.
    2. A working plan or architectural plan that specifies the locations within the place where the high consequence sealed source or high consequence group of sealed sources is proposed to be housed, possessed, stored, or used.
    3. The radionuclide type(s) of the high consequence sealed source or high consequence group of sealed sources proposed to be housed, possessed, stored, or used.
    4. The activity ratio of the high consequence sealed source or high consequence group of sealed sources proposed to be housed, possessed, stored, or used.
    5. The category of the high consequence sealed source or high consequence group of sealed sources proposed to be housed, possessed, stored, or used.
    6. The type and purpose of the high consequence sealed source or high consequence group of sealed sources proposed to be housed, possessed, stored, or used.
  2. When the proposed radiation facility is to be constructed on land owned or occupied by a person who is not the applicant, written evidence of the consent of the owner or occupier of the land on which the proposed radiation facility will be constructed for the construction of that facility.
  3. When land is to be used for, or a building is to be used as, a radiation facility and that land or building is owned or occupied by a person other than the applicant, written evidence of the consent of the owner or occupier of the land or building proposed to be used as a radiation facility for that facility.
  4. A copy of an approved security plan and security compliance certificate issued by an approved assessor for the sealed source or group of sealed sources proposed to be housed at the radiation facility.
  5. When the applicant is a natural person, evidence of the person's identity in accordance with the guidelines for the verification of identity.
  6. When the applicant is a body corporate, evidence of the identity of the person who is to be responsible for the security of the high consequence source or high consequence group of sealed sources.  This evidence must be in accordance with the guidelines for the verification of identity.

Does the radiation facility construction licence permit the acquisition of high consequence radioactive material?

No, it does not.

No radiation source may be acquired unless a valid radiation management licence exists which authorises the acquisition of the radiation source.

Once the facility has been constructed but well before you acquire any radiation sources you will need to apply for and obtain a management licence. If you already held a management licence prior to obtaining the facility construction licence you will probably need to apply to vary your existing licence.

Prior to the management licence being issued you will be contacted by an authorised officer of the department to arrange an inspection to verify that the security plan is being implemented; particularly in relation to physical barriers.