The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education Radiological and Environmental Analytical Laboratory (REAL) performs independent analysis of environmental samples, construction materials, waste materials, as well as other sample types for radiological and metal contaminants. The laboratory supports the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency.
Located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, the laboratory meets or exceeds numerous industry standards for quality. The REAL can analyze soil, water, air filters, smear samples, vegetation and biota, among others. The laboratory performs analyses for all radiological contaminants, including alpha, beta, and gamma emitting radionuclides. In addition, REAL has the capability for total metals analysis, toxicity characteristic leaching procedure (TCLP) metals and isotopic uranium by Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS).
The laboratory participates in several performance evaluation programs, including the DOE Mixed Analyte Performance Evaluation Program (MAPEP) and the NRC’s Intercomparison Testing Program (ITP). ORISE has maintained an excellent record for these performance evaluation programs, with better than a 99% acceptance rating.
The laboratory does not participate in projects that create potential or perceived conflict of interest or that otherwise jeopardize the impartiality of independent assessment and verification work for DOE and other regulatory authorities. This autonomy provides a greater assurance to stakeholders that the result obtained is not biased by commercial interests.
ORISE Radiological and Environmental Analytical Laboratory (REAL) capabilities:
- Sample tracking and preparation
- Gamma spectrometry
- Alpha spectrometry
- Liquid scintillation analysis
- Low-background gas proportional counting
- Metals analysis by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry
- Analytical flexibility
- Data analysis
- Options for analytical data package (levels 1-4)
ORISE Radiological and Environmental Analytical Laboratory sampling process: