NEWMDB - The IAEA Nuclear Waste Management Database IAEA - International Atomic Energy Agency

Glossary of Terms


The top-level user for the NEWMDB; has full read and write access to the database, grants permission to Country Co-ordinators
a waste treatment method involving the formation of an alloy of mercury and at least one other metal to produce a product that reduces the potential emission of elemental mercury vapours
the process, and the result, of analysing systematically the hazards associated with sources and practices, and associated protection and safety measures, aimed at quantifying performance measures for comparison with criteria.

In Agency publications, assessment should be distinguished from analysis. Assessment is aimed at providing information that forms the basis of a decision whether something is satisfactory or not. Various kinds of analysis may be used as tools in doing this. Hence an assessment may include a number of analyses.
The granting by a regulatory body or other governmental body of written permission for an operator to perform specified activities (could include, for example, licensing, certification, registration).

For the NEWMDB, authorized users are Country Co-ordinators and additional users they designate (Report Co-ordinators and Waste Experts) as well as IAEA staff designated by the NEWMDB Programme Officer
a conditioning method using bitumen to solidify waste (see solidification)
a cylindrical excavation, made by a drilling device. Boreholes are drilled during site investigation and testing and are also used for waste emplacement in repositories and monitoring.
a waste treatment method involving drying and heating substances in air, to sufficiently high temperatures, so as to produce oxides of the constituents. A technique usually employed for processing of residues from evaporation of liquid wastes.
calcine dissolution
a waste treatment method for putting calcined material into solution (fully or partially); see calcination
carbon adsorption
a waste treatment method where either gases or liquids (often groundwater) are pumped through columns or canisters containing activated carbon (charcoal) for the purpose of adsorbing organic constituents and specific radionuclides, such as radioiodine
Casting is a process by which a material is introduced into a mold while it is liquid, allowed to solidify in the shape inside the mold, and then removed producing a fabricated object
a conditioning method using cement to solidify waste (see solidification)
chemical precipitation
a waste treatment method where chemical additives cause contaminants that are either dissolved or suspended in solution to settle out of solution as a solid precipitate, which can then be filtered, centrifuged, or otherwise separated from the liquid portion
The removal of radioactive materials or radioactive objects within authorized practices from any further regulatory control by the regulatory body.
See client-server
computer terminology to identify various computers on a network, such as the Internet

The computers of NEWMDB users are the clients and the NEWMDB database resides on a server.
In the NEWMDB, for storage facilities, closed is used to indicate that waste is not currently being added to or removed from a storage unit. The unit may contain waste from previous operations; however, the organization operating the waste management facility is currently not emplacing or removing waste. Stoppage of waste emplacement / removal operations could be short term (e.g., pending decisions on re-opening) or they could be "permanent" (i.e., the storage unit will not be used to emplace waste in the future but the waste will be recovered prior to decommissioning of the unit). The latter case typically applies to historical storage units.

For disposal, see closure
see closure
1. administrative and technical actions directed at a repository at the end of its operating lifetime — for example covering the disposed waste (for a near surface repository) or backfilling and/or sealing (for a geological repository and the passages leading to it) — and termination and completion of activities in any associated structures.

2. administrative and technical actions directed at a tailings impoundment to place it in a condition such that little or no future surveillance and maintenance are required. The same concept may apply to mining debris piles, heap and in situ leaching piles, and mines. The term closeout is also sometimes used to describe this concept.

3. the completion of all operations at some time after the emplacement of spent fuel or radioactive waste in a disposal facility. This includes the final engineering or other work required to bring the facility to a condition that will be safe in the long term. [Joint Convention definition - not recommended for IAEA publications]

see decommissioning
1. a waste treatment method where the bulk volume of a compressible material is reduced by application of external pressure — hence an increase in its density (mass per unit volume)

2. compaction of soil materials covering a near surface disposal facility to reduce the soil permeability
operations that produce a waste package suitable for handling, transport, storage and/or disposal

Conditioning may include the conversion of the waste to a solid waste form, enclosure of the waste in a container and, if necessary, providing an overpack.

For the purpose of reporting waste inventories to the NEWMDB, the placement of raw waste into a container to facilitate shipment to a processing facility should not be considered to be conditioning.
the vessel into which the waste form is placed for handling, transport, storage and/or eventual disposal; also the outer barrier protecting the waste from external intrusions. The waste container is a component of the waste package. For example, molten HLW glass would be poured into a specially designed container (canister) where it would cool and solidify.
container (HIC)
high integrity container
container (ISO)
a container specified by the International Organization for Standardization
see conditioning
contaminated site
a geographical area, with or without buildings or other structures, with radioactive contamination and with or without non-radioactive contamination

Throughout the world there are sites contaminated with radioactivity due to past practices and some form of remediation or environmental remediation of these sites may be needed to ensure the protection of human health and the environment. However, there is no international consensus on the definition of a site, the definition of contaminated, or the extent of remediation or environmental remediation, if any, that is required ("how clean is clean?").

Note: contaminated sites are excluded from consideration in the NEWMDB until otherwise indicated - however, the waste generated from remediation activities and placed into waste management facilities at waste management sites is not excluded from consideration.
1. radioactive substances on surfaces, or within solids, liquids or gases (including the human body), where their presence is unintended or undesirable

2. the process giving rise to the presence of radioactive substances in such places.
information in small files that are saved on your computer’s hard disk

When connecting with some Internet sites, these sites may attempt to save cookies on your computer. Cookies can contain information about you (such as your name and address) and your preferences for interacting with the Internet site. For example, if you inquire about a hotel room at a Web site, the site might create a cookie that contains your preferences, such as non-smoking rooms only or it might only contain a record of the pages within the site you visited, to help the site customize the view for you the next time you visit.

Only the information that you provide to the site or the choices that you make while visiting a site are saved in a cookie. For example, a site cannot determine personal information about you unless you choose to provide it.

Allowing an Internet site to create a cookie does not give that or any other site access to the rest of your computer. In addition, only the site that created the cookie can read it.

Internet browsers, such as Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator, allow the creation of cookies. They also allow the user to control this activity by setting preferences (such as to issue a prompt before accepting a cookie). When using the NEWMDB, users should enable cookies (please refer to your Internet browser’s help for additional information).
Country Co-ordinator
a Member State’s single point-of-contact to interact with the NEWMDB Programme Officer; has read and write access for all data entered for his/her country, grants permission to Report Co-ordinators and Waste Experts
Country Waste Profile
all information entered by a Member State during NEWMDB data collection cycles (the combined information provided by Member States in the Framework Component and Waste Data Component)
anyone who accesses and/or makes use of WMDB or NEWMDB information
data collection cycle
time periods in which Member States are requested to submit information to the NEWMDB

Submissions of information are managed by way of a liaison between the NEWMDB Programme Officer and Country Co-ordinators. Initially, it is expected that Member States will be asked to submit information to the NEWMDB every two years, beginning in 2001. As experience is gained, Member States may be asked to submit information annually. Each request for a submission is a data collection cycle, which will have a start and end date.
deactivation of sodium
a waste treatment method to transform metallic sodium, which is highly reactive, into less chemically active forms

1. administrative and technical actions taken to allow the removal of some or all of the regulatory controls from a facility. This does not apply to a repository or to certain nuclear facilities used for mining and milling of radioactive materials, for which closure is used..

2. all steps leading to the release of a nuclear facility, other than a disposal facility, from regulatory control. These steps include the processes of decontamination and dismantling. [Joint Convention definition - not recommended for IAEA publications]

The use of the term decommissioning implies that no further use of the facility (or part thereof) for its existing purpose is foreseen.

The actions will need to be such as to ensure the long term protection of the public and the environment, and typically include reducing the levels of residual radionuclides in the materials and the site of the facility so that the materials can be safely recycled, reused or disposed of as exempt waste or as radioactive waste, and the site can be released for unrestricted use or otherwise reused.

Decommissioning typically includes dismantling the facility (or part thereof), but in the Agency’s usage this need not be the case. It could, for example, be decommissioned without dismantling and the existing structures subsequently put to another use (after decontamination).

the complete or partial removal of contamination by a deliberate physical, chemical or biological process.

This definition is intended to include a wide range of processes, but to exclude the removal of radionuclides from within the human body, which is not considered to be decontamination.
used in the original NEWMDB (no longer used) to indicate a facility for managing sealed radioactive sources (SRS) within the following scope:

(1) encompasses all SRS, not just disused or spent SRS

(2) the only wastes processed, stored or disposed by the facility are disused and/or spent SRS declared to be waste or the facility has a programme to track the location and characteristics of all SRS in the facility

The intent of the definition is to help ensure that Member States can report the inventory of SRS at waste management sites, which may be difficult or impossible to do for facilities at sites in which not all SRS are tracked individually.
defense (defence)
see defense/military

defense/military, defense (defence), and military are terms used in the NEWMDB to describe radioactive wastes derived from non-civilian applications of radioactive materials
depleted uranium
uranium containing a lesser mass percentage of uranium-235 than in natural uranium
A Country Co-ordinator can designate someone to do most of the data entry and/or interactions with the NEWMDB Programme Officer.
designate e-mail
A Country Co-ordinator can specify whether or not NEWMDB system messages are copied to or forwarded to his/her designate.
1. planned and controlled release of (usually gaseous or liquid) radioactive material to the environment.

2. a planned and controlled release into the environment, as a legitimate practice, within limits authorized by the regulatory body, of liquid or gaseous radioactive materials that originate from regulated nuclear facilities during normal operation. [Joint Convention definition - not recommended for IAEA publications]
1. emplacement of waste in an appropriate facility without the intention of retrieval.

2. the emplacement of spent fuel or radioactive waste in an appropriate facility without the intention of retrieval. [Joint Convention definition - not recommended for IAEA publications]

Some countries use the term disposal to include discharges of effluents to the environment. In some States, the term disposal is used administratively in such a way as to include, for example, incineration of waste or the transfer of waste between operators. In Agency publications, disposal should only be used in accordance with the more restrictive definition given above.The term disposal implies that retrieval is not intended; it does not mean that retrieval is not possible.
disposal facility
synonymous with repository
see disposal
used in the NEWMDB to indicate a waste management related destination for waste - for example, waste can be routed to a facility for processing, storage or disposal
disposition option
used in the NEWMDB to indicate option(s) for routing waste to a waste management facility, as follows:

origin => destination(s)
generator => processing, storage, disposal
processing => storage, disposal
storage => processing, disposal
used in the NEWMDB to indicate a sealed radioactive source (SRS) that is no longer in use or intended to be used
1. a waste conditioning method for the immobilization of dispersed solids (e.g. ash or powder) by mixing them with a matrix material in order to produce a waste form. See also macroencapsulation.

2. the emplacement of a solid waste form (e.g. spent fuel assemblies) in a container.
environmental assessment
an evaluation of the issues and concerns important to a project/activity, alternate means of accomplishing a project/activity, and estimates/projections of any adverse affects on the environment of each of those alternatives

This is a general definition, it may vary from country to country.
environmental impact assessment
a systematic consideration of the likely significant impacts upon the environment that would occur as a result of an activity or event

This is a general definition, it may vary from country to country.
environmental impact statement
a report detailing the findings of an environmental impact assessment

This is a general definition, it may vary from country to country.
environmental risk assessment
a systematic evaluation of the risks associated with hazards to human health and safety and the environment, arising from human activities capable of impacting on the environment on a continuous or accidental basis

This is a general definition, it may vary from country to country.
concentration of a liquid by conversion of some fraction of the volatile material content to the vapour state by latent heat - a treatment method used to concentrate some types of radioactive solutions
exempt waste
applies to waste that is released from regulatory control in accordance with exemption principles
the determination by a regulatory body that a source or practice need not be subject to some or all aspects of regulatory control on the basis that the exposure (including potential exposure) due to the source or practice is too small to warrant the application of those aspects
used in the NEWMDB to denote a nuclear facility, especially radioactive waste management facilities

A facility is something that is built, installed or established to serve a particular purpose. For example, in the NEWMDB a storage facility could be a physical structure that was specifically built to store radioactive waste or an existing structure that has been designated to store radioactive waste. A facility may consist of multiple physical structures - see storage unit.
filter leaching
a waste treatment method where filters, such as HEPA filters, are leached, for example by nitric acid solution, to remove radioactive contaminants
a waste treatment involving the separation of solids from liquids or gases by passing the mixture through the interstices of a suitable medium, for example filter paper, cloth or glass wool
Framework Component
the NEWMDB component that is used by Country Co-ordinators to customize how information about radioactive waste management programmes and inventories for their country will be reported to the NEWMDB
free release
see clearance
easily crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder; loose and granular material
fuel cycle
see nuclear fuel cycle
fuel enrichment
the physical process of increasing the concentration of the uranium-235 isotope relative to the predominant uranium-238 isotope in natural uranium
fuel fabrication
the manufacture of fuel for nuclear reactors
an amorphous material with a molecule distribution similar to that of a liquid but with a viscosity so great that its physical properties are those of a solid. Glasses used in the solidification of liquid High Level Waste are generally based on a silicon-oxygen network. Additional network formers such as aluminium, or modifiers such as boron, lead to aluminosilicate or borosilicate glass.
GO button
The GO button is used in conjuction with a list of reporting years to select the current data submission or reports from previous submissions. See the following on line Help Page
Using the GO button
see Reporting Group
a fluid material that is injected into soil, rock, concrete, or waste packages to seal openings and to lower the permeability and/or provide additional structural strength. There are four major types of grouting materials: chemical, cement, clay, and bitumen.
high efficiency particulate (in) air
High Level Waste
see waste classification

see waste classification
host medium
the geological formation in which a repository is located
a collection of conditioning methods for conversion of waste into a waste form by solidification, embedding or encapsulation. The aim is to reduce the potential for migration or dispersion of radionuclides during handling, transport, storage and/or disposal
in situ
in its original place
a waste treatment method of burning combustible waste to reduce its volume and yield an ash residue
Indicators of Sustainable Development
an element of “Agenda 21”, which was issued from the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in June 1992.

Chapter 40 of Agenda 21 calls for the development of indicators for sustainable development (ISD). In particular, it requests countries at the national level, and international government and non-governmental organizations at the international level, to develop the concept of ISD in order to identify such indicators.

As a follow up, the IAEA was assigned the responsibility to develop ISD for radioactive waste management, in accordance with Chapter 22 of Agenda 21 and the UN-wide indicators development work programme. Development of ISD for radioactive waste was still on-going at the IAEA in 2001/2002.
interim storage
see storage
ion exchange
a usually reversible exchange of one ion with another, either on a solid surface, or within a lattice. A commonly used method for treatment of liquid waste.
Joint Convention
The Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management
lake (closed)
The Russian Federation had a past practice of "disposing" of liquid waste into some closed lakes (no significant pathways for water to exit other than by transpiration). These lakes were reclassified to storage facilities (this information was provided in an NEWMDB workshop).
a body of enacted or customary rules recognized by a community as binding
1. a legal document issued by the regulatory body granting authorization to perform specified activities related to a facility or activity.

2. any authorization, permission or certification granted by a regulatory body to carry out any activity related to management of spent fuel or of radioactive waste. [Joint Convention definition - not recommended for IAEA publications]
see license
see waste classification
see waste classification
see waste classification
see waste classification
Long Lived
see waste classification
Low and Intermediate Level Waste
see waste classification

low specific activity waste

LSA is not part of the IAEA’s proposed waste classification scheme; however it is used by some Member States to indicate radioactive waste with very low levels of radionuclides. Some Member States refer to this as very low level waste (VLLW), which is also not part of the IAEA’s proposed scheme.
a waste conditioning method that involves pouring an encapsulating material over and around a large mass of waste, thereby enclosing it in a solidified block (see also encapsulation)
Main Component
The NEWMDB component that is used by Country Co-ordinators to define the waste classification schemes used in their countries, to compare these schemes with the Agency's proposed common waste classification scheme, to provide their contact information, to define additional users to assist them with an NEWMDB submission and to provide general information (regulators, regulations and laws, milestones in radioactive waste management and policies related to radioactive waste management)
membrane technology
a collection of waste treatment methods that utilizes semi-permeable membranes to separate insoluble and some soluble species from bulk liquid (or gaseous) media

The principal use of membrane technology in radioactive waste management is to reduce the levels radioactive and non-radioactive contaminants in the bulk media
mercury treatment
a collection of waste treatment methods for mercury-bearing hazardous wastes to remove mercury or to render it less volatile (the treatment method(s) selected depend on the concentration of mercury in the waste)
metal melting
a waste treatment method where radioactive metallic items are melted for homgenization, decontamination and/or reuse

Optionally, the metal is used to manufacture containers for other radioactive waste.
see encapsulation
used in the NEWMDB to indicate significant or noteworthy developments, occurrences, or circumstances related to radioactive waste management
see defense/military
natural uranium
chemically separated uranium containing the naturally occurring distribution of uranium isotopes (approximately 99.28% uranium-238, and 0.72% uranium-235 by mass)
NEWMDB Programme Officer
the IAEA’s single point-of-contact for the NEWMDB

naturally occurring radioactive material - material containing no significant amounts of radionuclides other than naturally occurring radionuclides. The exact definition of ‘significant amounts’ would be a regulatory decision
notification e-mail
the principal e-mail addressed used by the NEWMDB Programme Officer to communicate with Country Co-ordinators
nuclear applications
civilian practices using radioactive materials, excluding the nuclear fuel cycle
nuclear facility
a facility and its associated land, buildings and equipment in which radioactive materials are produced, processed, used, handled, stored or disposed of on such a scale that consideration of safety is required
nuclear fuel cycle
operations associated with the production of nuclear energy, including:
- mining and milling, processing and enrichment of uranium or thorium;
- manufacture of nuclear fuel;
- operation of nuclear reactors (including research reactors);
- reprocessing of nuclear fuel;
- any related research and development activities; and
- all related waste management activities (including decommissioning)
organic destruction
a collection of waste treatment methods that involves the destruction of hazardous organics using chemical, electrochemical or photochemical oxidants other than oxygen or air as the primary means to change the chemical, physical, or biological character or composition of the waste. Moderate increases in temperature may be used to accelerate the rates of the organic destruction reactions but gas phase oxidation or pyrolytic degradation with or without combustion flames or plasma arcs are typically not included.
a general chemical process for increasing the valence of an atom or compount

In waste treatment, a method to chemically convert hazardous contaminants to non-hazardous or less toxic compounds that are more stable, less mobile, and/or inert. The commonly used oxidizing agents are ozone, hydrogen peroxide, hypochlorites, chlorine, and chlorine dioxide, which are typically used to treat organic waste.
a secret, NEWMDB user-specified code that is required to login to the NEWMDB
performance assessment
an assessment of the performance of a system or subsystem and its implications for protection and safety at a planned or an authorized facility. This differs from safety assessment in that it can be applied to parts of a facility, and does not necessarily require assessment of radiological impacts
in the context of the NEWMDB, the granting of full or partial access to NEWMDB information

The NEWMDB design requires that Authorized Users (Country Co-ordinators, Report Co-ordinators and Waste Experts) be granted permission to view or edit/modify all or part of the information entered into the database for a Member State.

- full access to all NEWMDB information for all Countries
- grants permission to Country Co-ordinators

Country Co-ordinator
- full access to all information entered for his/her Country
- grants permissions to Report Co-ordinators and Waste Experts

Report Co-ordinator
- full access to information within his/her Reporting Group
- can grant permission to Waste Experts

Waste Expert
- full or partial access to information within Reporting Group (limits can be set by the Country Co-ordinator or Report Co-ordinator)
a course or general plan of action (to be) adopted by a government, body or person
a waste conditioning method using chemical reactions in which one or more small molecules combine to form larger molecules
any human activity that introduces additional sources of radiation exposure or exposure pathways or extends exposure to additional people or modifies the network of exposure pathways from existing sources, so as to increase the exposure or the likelihood of exposure of people or the number of people exposed
any or all of the operations prior to waste treatment, such as collection, segregation, chemical adjustment and decontamination
see processing
any operation that changes the characteristics of waste, including pretreatment, treatment and conditioning
see Country Waste Profile
Public User
see register and registered user
quality assurance
planned and systematic actions necessary to provide adequate confidence that an item, process or service will satisfy given requirements for quality, for example, those specified in the licence

The definition above is slightly modified from that in ISO 921:1997 (Nuclear Energy:Vocabulary) to say “an item, process or service” instead of “a product or service”. A more general definition of quality assurance and definitions of related terms can be found in ISO 8402:1994)
radio button
a round button with associated text (a label), an icon, or an image that indicates a choice the user can make by selecting the button

A computer application typically uses radio buttons in a group box to permit the user to choose from a set of related, but mutually exclusive options. For example, the application might present a group of radio buttons from which the user can select a format preference for text selected. The user could select a left-aligned, right-aligned, or centred format by selecting the corresponding radio button. Typically, the user can select only one option at a time from a set of radio buttons.
radionuclide separation
a Department of Energy (United States of America) activity to separate wastes containing radionuclides from wastes containing only non-radiologically hazardous materials. (Federal Facility Compliance Act of 1992,
reactor operations
used in the NEWMDB to indicate waste arising from the operation and maintenance of nuclear reactors, both power and research reactors (includes waste from commissioning operations and generated from hot cell work with reactor components, excludes decommissioning waste)
Public (non-authorized) users of the NEWMDB must register by completing a registration form. As a minimum, the user's e-mail address must be provided. Some additional (optional) information is also requested at time of registration.
registered user
any non-authorized user (see authorization)

At the request of some Member States, the IAEA maintains a log of who accessed NEWMDB reports and when they were accessed. To track access, authorized Users (such as Country Co-ordinators) login to identify themselves. Other (Public) users must first register.
an all-encompassing public policy term that includes various political and economic issues and ideas; government regulations include two distinct categories -- economic regulations and social regulations.

Economic regulations generally cover sectors of an economy such as energy, communications, transportation, and financial institutions. These regulations usually take the form of overt barriers to entry or exit, licensing and tarif laws, and price and wage controls.

Social regulations include statues or rules that are intended to protect citizen or worker health and safety, accomplish environmental and other aesthetic goals, or promote civil rights objectives.
see regulatory body
see regulatory body
regulatory body
1. an authority or a system of authorities designated by the government of a State as having legal authority for conducting the regulatory process, including issuing authorizations, and thereby for regulating the siting, design, construction, commissioning, operation, closure, decommissioning and, if required, subsequent institutional control of the nuclear facilities (e.g. near surface repositories) or specific aspects thereof.

2. any body or bodies given the legal authority by the Contracting Party to regulate any aspect of the safety of spent fuel or radioactive waste management including the granting of licences. [Joint Convention definition - not recommended for IAEA publications]
regulatory control
any form of control applied to facilities or activities by a regulatory body for reasons related to protection or safety
1. see discharge

2. removal from regulatory control
see release
measures carried out to reduce the radiation exposure from existing contamination through actions applied to the contamination itself (the source) or to the exposure pathways to humans
Report Co-ordinator
a person designated by a Country Co-ordinator to assist with reporting to the NEWMDB

Country Co-ordinators define the number and structure of Reporting Groups for reporting to the NEWMDB. Each Reporting Group must be assigned a Report Co-ordinator, who has read and write access for all information for the Reporting Group. A Report Co-ordinator grants permission to Waste Experts
Reporting Group
used in the NEWMDB to indicate that a submission is divided into parts, where each part is a called a Reporting Group - see
a nuclear facility where waste is emplaced for disposal
a process or operation, the purpose of which is to extract radioactive isotopes from spent fuel for further use
a waste treatment method that typically uses water to wash off unbound radioactive contamination from tanks and other waste containers
a default set of permissions that define a user's access to a database (both registered users and Public Users)

There are two types of permissions: explicit and implicit. Explicit permissions are those permissions that are granted directly to a user account; no other users are affected. Implicit permissions are those permissions that are granted to a group account. Adding a user to that group grants the group's permissions to that user; removing a user from the group takes away the group's permissions from that user.
safety assessment
an analysis to evaluate the performance of an overall system and its impact, where the performance measure is radiological impact or some other global measure of impact on safety. See also performance assessment.
a set of computer commands that are performed upon user request or due to user interaction with a computer program

For example, when information is entered into an electronic form on a computer, a script may be used to process the information, such as adding numbers or to check spelling. The user can either request this action or it can happen automatically (for example, as soon as a user tabs between data entry fields).
sealed radioactive source
radioactive material that is permanently sealed in a capsule or closely bonded and in a solid form

the separation of materials (waste items) based on physical, chemical and radiological properties, typically to separate these materials for different processing options
see client-server
Short Lived
see waste classification
a waste treatment method to cut waste items into smaller pieces to facilitate handling or for subsequent treatment or conditioning (such as shredding followed by compaction)
the land area where any facility or activity is physically located or conducted, including adjacent land used in connection with the facility or activity
size reduction
a generic term for treatment methods used to reduce the size of waste items (see compaction and metal melting for examples)
a mixture of solid waste material and water

Sludges result from the concentration of contaminants in wastewater and water treatment processes. Typical wastewater sludges contain from 0.5 to 10 percent solid matter. Typical water treatment sludges contain 8 to 10 percent solids.
sludge washing
a treatment method used to extract soluble contaminants from sludge (includes "enhanced sludge washing")

Enhanced sludge washing (ESW) refers to the extraction of components from sludges using strong caustic solution, as opposed to simple sludge washing with only water. ESW removes nonradioactive components such as aluminum, chromium and phosphate salts from sludges.
the immobilization of gaseous, liquid or liquid-like materials by conversion into a solid waste form, usually with the intent of producing a physically stable material that is easier to handle and less dispersible. calcination, drying, cementation, bituminization and vitrification are some of the typical ways of solidifying liquid waste.
solvent extraction
a waste treatment method in which a generally aqueous solution is mixed with an immiscible solvent to transfer one or more components into the solvent (typically used to separate chemicals or radionuclides)

The solute dissolves more readily and becomes more concentrated in the solvent in which it has a higher solubility. A partial separation occurs when a number of solutes have different relative solubilities in the two solvents used.
special fissionable material
a term used in the Statute of the IAEA with essentially the following meaning, but explicitly excluding source material:

Plutonium except that with isotopic concentration exceeding 80% in plutonium-238; uranium-233; uranium enriched in the isotope 235 or 233; uranium containing the mixture of isotopes as occurring in nature other than in the form of ore or ore-residue; any material containing one or more of the foregoing

Source material is defined as uranium containing the mixture of isotopes occurring in nature; uranium depleted in the isotope 235; thorium; any of the foregoing in the form of metal, alloy, chemical compound, or concentrate; any other material containing one or more of the foregoing in such concentration as the Board of Governors shall from time to time determine; and such other material as the Board of Governors shall from time to time determine
a term typically used for radioactive materials in the following context:

spent fuel: nuclear fuel removed from a reactor following irradiation, which is no longer usable in its present form because of depletion of fissile material, poison build-up or radiation damage.

spent sealed radioactive source (SRS): an SRS that is no longer suitable for its intended purpose as a result of radioactive decay

Note: in the initial data collection cycles, Member States are not being asked to report spent fuel inventories. However, if a Member State uses a waste class matrix to equate spent fuel with High Level Waste, it may report spent fuel as HLW
see sealed radioactive source
conversion of chemically active or readily dispersible matter into an inert or less harmful form
the holding of spent fuel or radioactive waste in a facility that provides for its containment, with the intention of retrieval.

Storage is by definition an interim measure, and the term interim storage would therefore be appropriate only to refer to short term temporary storage when contrasting this with the longer term fate of the waste. Storage as defined above should not be described as interim storage.

In the NEWMDB, interim storage applies to waste that is being held for a short time while awaiting transfer to an available disposition option. For example, waste being stored in a processing facility awaiting transfer to an available storage or disposal facility would be considered to be in interim storage. If waste is being storage because there is no place to send it, for example, it is being stored because there is no processing or disposal alternative available, the waste would be considered to be in storage, not in interim storage. In general, the NEWMDB considers temporary to imply periods of less than one year.
storage facility
a nuclear facility where waste is emplaced for storage
storage unit
A single storage facility may use various types of storage, such as tanks for liquids, bunkers for low activity waste, and silos for higher activity waste. The NEWMDB uses the concept of storage units to identify the various types of storage used.
see storage
super compaction
used in radioactive waste management facilities to indicate high force compaction, typically ranging from 750 -2000 ton compactors
materials in which the activity concentrations of the naturally occurring radionuclides have been changed by human made processes are referred to as technically enhanced NORM or TE-NORM
thermal desorption
a thermally induced physical separation process

Thermal desorption is a term applied to many different types of soil treatment technologies. All of these technologies consist fundamentally of a two-step process. In Step 1, heat is applied to a contaminated material, such as soil, sediment, sludge, or filter cake, to vaporize the contaminants into a gas stream that, in Step 2, is treated to prior to discharge. A variety of gas treatment technologies are used to collect, condense, or destroy these volatized gases.
thermal treatment
a broad term used to describe a range of heating or combustion technologies used for the treatment of waste

Various technologies have been developed that differ significantly depending on process temperature, amount of oxygen used and the specific wastes treated. The most common types of thermal treatment are incineration, pyrolysis and gasification.
operations intended to benefit safety and/or economy by changing the characteristics of waste. Three basic treatment objectives are:
- volume reduction;
- removal of radionuclides from the waste; and
- change of composition.
uranium mine and mill tailings
the process of transferring files from a NEWMDB user’s computer (client) to the IAEA server where the NEWMDB database resides
the completion of an upload
user name
a unique identifier that is assigned to a registered user
a waste conditoning method incorporating materials into a glass or glass-like form. Vitrification is commonly applied to the solidification of liquid High Level Waste from the reprocessing of spent fuel.
waste classification
a method used to group various types of radioactive waste according to their physical, chemical and radiological characteristics - the following discussion is limited to radiological classification

Historically, Member States have developed and used a variety of waste classification schemes for their radioactive waste. Commonly used waste classes include:
Low Level Waste (LLW),
Intermediate Level Waste (ILW),
Medium-Level Waste (MLW),
Low and Intermediate Level Waste (LILW),
Heat Generating Waste,
High Level Waste (HLW),
Alpha Bearing Waste,
Transuranic Waste (TRU),
spent sealed radioactive sources (SRS) - can be a subset of disused sources,
Spent Fuel (SF),
decommissioning Waste (DW), and
Uranium Mine and Mill Tailings (UMMT).

Other classes that have been used include de minimis, Below regulatory Concern (BRC), and Very Low-Level Waste (VLLW), which have been used by various Member States to classify waste with the lowest levels of radioactivity.

The above waste classification schemes are based on both qualitative and quantitative criteria in which wastes are grouped according to their origin, activity content, radiotoxicity and thermal power. It is understood that there is a substantial overlap between the foregoing waste classes. It should be noted that waste classification schemes have been developed for practices and usually do not address natural material e.g. NORM and TE-NORM.

A waste classification scheme was proposed by the IAEA in Section 3 of Safety Guide 111-G-1.1, "Classification of Radioactive Waste". The proposed classification scheme is based on quantitative criteria in which wastes are grouped according to the safety aspects of their management, especially disposal options. Click Here to view the IAEA’s proposed scheme.

Member States may report their radioactive waste inventories to the NEWMDB according to their own waste classification schemes. However, Member States MUST specify the relationship between their own scheme(s) and the IAEA’s proposed scheme using the NEWMDB’s waste class matrix feature.
Waste Data Component
the NEWMDB component that is used by Country Co-ordinators to report radioactive waste inventories, waste treatment methods, waste conditioning methods and disused/spent, sealed radioactive source (SRS) inventories at waste management sites in their countries to the NEWMDB
Waste Expert
a person designated by a Country Co-ordinator or a Report Co-ordinator to assist with reporting to the NEWMDB

A Country Co-ordinator defines the number and structure of Reporting Groups for reporting to the NEWMDB. A Waste Expert can be assigned to one or more Reporting Groups and have read and write access for only the Reporting Groups to which they are assigned. A Country Co-ordinator or a Report Co-ordinator can also limit the information that a Waste Expert can access within an individual Reporting Group.

A Country Co-ordinator and/or a Report Co-ordinator grants permission to a Waste Expert.
waste form
waste in its physical and chemical form after treatment and/or conditioning (resulting in a solid product) prior to packaging. The waste form is a component of the waste package
waste management facility
1. a facility specifically designated to handle, treat, condition, store or dispose of radioactive waste.

2. any facility or installation the primary purpose of which is radioactive waste management, including a nuclear facility in the process of being decommissioned only if it is designated by the Contracting Party as a radioactive waste management facility. [Joint Convention definition - not recommended for IAEA publications]
waste management site
For reporting to the NEWMDB, a Waste Management site is (a) limited to sites licensed under nuclear or radioactive materials regulations of the Member State and (b) includes at least one waste management facility. With regards to licensing, the identified facilities could be covered under the license of another facility, such as a nuclear reactor.
waste package
the product of conditioning that includes the waste form and any container(s) and internal barriers (e.g. absorbing materials and liners), prepared in accordance with the requirements for handling, transport, storage and/or disposal
wastewater treatment
a collection of treament methods for removing contaminants (pollutants) from water that has been used

water/acid washing
a treatment method used in the United States of America to wash High Level Waste tanks after the mechanical removal of bulk sludge