A mutually convenient arrangement between the Purchasing Office and the Radiation Safety Office will prevent the accidental purchase and use of radioactive material by persons not familiar with the requirements of this Radiation Safety Guide.


Please review Section 5 of the Radiation Safety Guide (pdf) prior to purchasing any radioactive materials.  All radioactive material and device purchases must first be approved by the laboratory’s Authorized User and then approved by either the Radiation Safety Office or Radiation Safety Committee as described in Section 5. This approval must occur prior to the submittal of a purchase requisition to the Research Foundation. 

NOTE: The use of “procards” to purchase radioactive materials or radiation emitting devices is strictly prohibited.

When creating a purchase order, please note that all radioactive material and radiation emitting devices must be shipped to the following address:

Hazardous Materials Stock Room
201 Riverside Ave.
Lowell, MA 01854
Attention: Radiation Safety Office

Purchasing Procedure

The specific steps necessary to purchase radioactive materials or radiation emitting devices include:

  1. Send a Radiation Purchase Request Form (pdf) (form HP-1) to the Radiation Safety Office. 
  2. The Radiation Safety Office (RSO) can immediately approve previously reviewed experiments and uses of radioactive materials.  New experiments or uses will be reviewed by the Radiation Safety Committee (RSC) at their next meeting. 
  3. If the purchase is approved by the RSO / RSC, the signed form will be sent / Faxed back to the user. 
  4. The user then writes the purchase order.  NOTE: The purchase order must have the order shipped to the Hazardous Materials Stock Room at 201 Riverside Ave, Attention Radiation Safety Office.
  5. The user sends the signed Radiation Purchase Request Form along with their purchase order to the Research Foundation.

NOTE: The Research Foundation will not process purchase requisitions containing radioactive material unless a Radiation Purchase Request Form is present and signed by either a member of the Radiation Safety Office or a member of the Radiation Safety Committee.

Package Receipt

When the package is shipped to the university, the Radiation Safety Office will receive, open, inventory, and process your radioactive materials package.  After processing, a member of the Radiation Safety Office will contact your laboratory to arrange a pickup.

The Radiation Safety Office will check all radioactive material packages for contamination and verify that external dose rates agree with the values stated by the shipper.  It is therefore not required for a laboratory to perform a radiation survey on a package received from the Radiation Safety Office but it is advisable to verify contamination levels or radiation field levels under the following conditions:

  • The package is damaged or its integrity compromised after receipt from the Radiation Safety Office.
  • The radioactive material container is visibly damaged.

All packages containing loose radioactive material (liquid, solid, gaseous) should be accompanied by a Radioisotope Use and Disposal Record (see Appendix IX) provided by the Radiation Safety Office.  This form may be used as documentation for radioactive material inventory and waste. Users should use this form to document each time that the radioactive material is removed from the isotope stock container and record the final disposition of the material.  If the form was not included with the package, call the Radiation Safety Office (x3372).