Term Description
Additional Protocol (AP) An agreement designed to complement a state's safeguards agreement with the IAEA in order to strengthen the effectiveness and improve the efficiency of the safeguards system. The model text of the Additional Protocol is set out in IAEA document INFCIRC/540 (Corrected).
Asia-Pacific Safeguards Network (APSN) A professional network that draws upon safeguards expertise in the Asia-Pacific to facilitate the exchange of safeguards information, knowledge, and practical experience among members in order to strengthen safeguards capabilities in the region.
Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) ANSTO is the Australian public research organisation focused on nuclear science and technology with applications in health including radiopharmaceutical production, engineering, materials science, the environment and the nuclear fuel cycle. ANSTO's operations include the OPAL research reactor and ANSTO Nuclear Medicine (ANM).
Australian Obligated Nuclear Material (AONM) Nuclear material exported from Australia and nuclear material derived therefrom, which is subject to obligations pursuant to Australia's bilateral nuclear cooperation agreements.
Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) The Australian Government's primary authority on radiation protection and nuclear safety. ARPANSA regulates Commonwealth entities that use radiation with the objective of protecting people and the environment.
Australian Safeguards Support Program (ASSP) ASSP is one of 21 programs established by member States and the European Commission to assist the IAEA in safeguards research and development and is coordinated by ASNO.
Central Nervous System-Acting chemicals (CNSACs) Toxic (and potentially lethal) chemicals that target the central nervous system.
Challenge Inspection (For CWC purposes) an inspection, requested by a CWC State Party, of any facility or location in the territory or in any other place under the jurisdiction or control of another State Party.
Chemical Weapon Production Facility (CWPF) Provisions for dealing with chemical weapon production facilities are addressed in Article V of the CWC.
Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) Commonly used name given to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction.
Complementary Access (CA) The right of the IAEA, pursuant to the Additional Protocol, for access to a site or location to carry out verification activities.
Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) The CTBT bans all nuclear explosions – everywhere, by everyone. While there is almost universal adoption of the Treaty, it will not enter into force until the 44 States specified in Annex 2 have signed and ratified the Treaty.
Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) The Vienna-based international organisation established at entry into force of the CTBT to ensure the implementation of its provisions.
Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement (CSA) Agreement between a state and the IAEA for the application of safeguards to all of the state's current and future nuclear activities (equivalent to ‘full scope' safeguards) based on IAEA document INFCIRC/153 (corrected).
Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) CPPNM establishes physical protection measures that must be applied to nuclear material in international transport, as well as measures related to criminal offenses related to nuclear material.
Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material Amended (CPPNM/A) The amended CPPNM additionally requires physical protection measures for nuclear facilities and material in domestic use, storage and transport. It also requires states to criminalize malicious acts involving nuclear facilities and material and expands State-to-State cooperation in responding to such acts.
Conversion Purification of uranium ore concentrates or recycled nuclear material and conversion to a chemical form suitable for isotopic enrichment or fuel fabrication.
CWC-Scheduled Chemicals Chemicals listed in the three Schedules to the Chemical Weapons Convention. Some are chemical warfare agents and others are dual-use chemicals that can be used in industry or in the manufacture of chemical warfare agents.
Defence Science and Technology (DST) The Australian Government's lead agency responsible for applying science and technology to defence and national security.
Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) Also known as North Korea
Depleted Uranium (DU) Uranium with a 235U content less than that found in nature (e.g. the waste product of the uranium enrichment processes).
Direct-Use Material Nuclear material defined for safeguards purposes as being usable for nuclear explosives without transmutation or further enrichment, e.g. plutonium, High Enriched Uranium (HEU) and 233U.
Discrete Organic Chemical (DOC) Any chemical belonging to the class of chemical compounds consisting of all compounds of carbon, except for its oxides, sulphides and metal carbonates, identifiable by chemical name, by structural formula, if known, and by Chemical Abstracts Service registry number, if assigned. Long chain polymers are not included in this definition.
Enrichment A physical or chemical process for increasing the proportion of a particular isotope. Uranium enrichment involves increasing the proportion of 235U from its level in natural uranium, 0.711%. For Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) fuel used in a power reactor the proportion of 235U (the enrichment level) is typically increased to between 3% and 5%.
Euratom Atomic Energy Agency of the European Union. Euratom's safeguards office, called the Directorate-General of Energy E – Nuclear Safeguards, is responsible for the application of safeguards to all nuclear material in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden; and to all nuclear material in civil facilities in France and the United Kingdom (for this reporting period).
Facility (For CWC purposes) a plant, plant site or production/ processing unit.

(For safeguards purposes) a reactor, critical facility, conversion plant, fabrication plant, reprocessing plant, isotope separation plant, separate storage location, or any location where safeguards-significant amounts of nuclear material are customarily used.
Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) The United Nations can establish FFMs to discover facts, often in troubled areas, within clear legal and political parameters.
Fissile Referring to a nuclide capable of undergoing fission by neutrons of any energy, including ‘thermal' neutrons (e.g. 233U, 235U, 239Pu and 241Pu).
Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT) A proposed international treaty to prohibit production of fissile material for nuclear weapons.
Fission The splitting of an atomic nucleus into roughly equal parts, often triggered by a bombarding neutron.

In a nuclear reactor, a neutron collides with a fissile nuclide (e.g. 235U) that then splits, releasing energy and further neutrons. Some of these neutrons go on to collide with other fissile nuclei, setting up a nuclear chain reaction.
Fissionable Referring to a nuclide capable of undergoing fission by ‘fast' neutrons (e.g. 233U, 235U, 238U, 239Pu, 240Pu, 241Pu and 242Pu).
Full-Scope Safeguards The application of IAEA safeguards to all of a state's present and future nuclear activities. Now more commonly referred to as comprehensive safeguards.
Geoscience Australia (GA) Geoscience Australia is Australia's leading public sector geoscience organisation. GA conducts nuclear monitoring activities on behalf of the Australian Government agreed through a Letter of Understanding between ASNO and GA. GA is also involved in the installation and maintenance of some of the CTBT IMS stations in Australia and its territories. These activities play an important role in ensuring Australia fulfils its obligations under the CTBT.
GW Gigawatt (Giga = billion, 109)
GWe Gigawatts of electrical power
GWt Gigawatts of thermal power
Heavy Water (D2O) Water enriched in the ‘heavy' hydrogen isotope deuterium (2H) which consists of a proton and a neutron. D2O occurs naturally as about one part in 6000 of ordinary water. D2O is a very efficient moderator, enabling the use of natural uranium in a nuclear reactor.
High Flux Australian Reactor (HIFAR) The 10 MWt research reactor located at ANSTO, Lucas Heights. Undergoing decommissioning.
High enriched uranium (HEU) Uranium enriched to 20% or more in 235U. Weapons-grade HEU is enriched to over 90% 235U.
Hydroacoustic Term referring to underwater propagation of pressure waves (sounds). One category of CTBT IMS station monitoring changes in water pressure generated by sound waves in the water.
Indirect-Use Material Nuclear material that cannot be used for a nuclear explosive without transmutation or further enrichment (e.g. depleted uranium, natural uranium, LEU and thorium).
INFCIRC IAEA Information Circular. A series of documents published by the IAEA setting out, inter alia, safeguards, physical protection and export control arrangements.
INFCIRC/153 (Corrected) The model agreement used by the IAEA as a basis for comprehensive safeguards agreements with non-nuclear- weapon states party to the NPT.
INFCIRC/225 Rev.5

IAEA document entitled ‘Nuclear Security Recommendations on Physical Protection of Nuclear Materials and Nuclear Facilities'. Its recommendations reflect a consensus of views among IAEA Member States on desirable requirements for physical protection measures on nuclear material and facilities, that is, measures taken for their physical security.
INFCIRC/540 (Corrected) The model text of the IAEA's Additional Protocol.
INFCIRC/66 Rev.2 The model safeguards agreement used by the IAEA since 1965. Essentially, this agreement is facility-specific. For NNWS party to the NPT it has been replaced by INFCIRC/153.
Infrasound Sound in the frequency range of about 0.02 to 4 Hertz. One category of CTBT IMS stations will monitor sound at these frequencies with the aim of detecting explosive events such as a nuclear test explosion at a range up to 5000 km.
Integrated safeguards The optimum combination of all safeguards measures under comprehensive safeguards agreements and the Additional Protocol to achieve maximum effectiveness and efficiency.
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) The IAEA is the international centre for cooperation in the nuclear field. The Agency works with its Member States and multiple partners worldwide to promote the safe, secure and peaceful use of nuclear technologies.
International Data Centre (IDC) Data gathered by monitoring stations in the CTBT IMS network are compiled, analysed to identify events and archived by the Vienna-based IDC. IDC products giving the data about events are made available to CTBT signatories.
International Framework for Nuclear Energy Cooperation (IFNEC) An international forum for cooperation on the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes that is efficient, safe and secure and does not aid proliferation.
International Monitoring System (IMS) A network of monitoring stations and analytical laboratories established pursuant to the CTBT which, together with the IDC, gather and analyse data with the aim of detecting any nuclear explosion.
International Partnership of Nuclear Disarmament Verification (IPNDV) IPNDV is an ongoing initiative of more than 25 countries with and without nuclear weapons. The Partners are identifying challenges associated with nuclear disarmament verification and developing potential approaches and technologies to address those challenges.
International Physical Protection Advisor Service (IPPAS) The IAEA created IPPAS in 1995 to provides peer advice on implementing international instruments and Agency guidance on the protection of nuclear and other radioactive material, associated facilities and associated activities.
Inventory Change Report (ICR) A formal report from a national safeguards authority to the IAEA on changes to nuclear materials inventories in a given period.
Isotopes Nuclides with the same number of protons, but different numbers of neutrons, e.g. 235U (92 protons and 143 neutrons) and 238U (92 protons and 146 neutrons). The number of neutrons in an atomic nucleus, while not significantly altering its chemistry, does alter its properties in nuclear reactions.

As the number of protons is the same, isotopes are different forms of the same chemical element.
Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) The Security Council adopted resolutions for a joint UN-OPCW investigation into the use of chemical weapon weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic.
Light water H2O. Ordinary water.
Light water reactor (LWR) A power reactor which is both moderated and cooled by ordinary (light) water. In this type of reactor, the uranium fuel must be slightly enriched (that is, LEU).
Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) Low Enriched Uranium. Uranium enriched to less than 20% 235U. Commonly, LEU used as fuel in light water reactors is enriched to between 3% and 5% 235U.
Material Balance Area (MBA) A delineation for nuclear accounting purposes as required under comprehensive safeguards agreements. It is a defined and delineated area in or outside of a facility such that: (a) the quantity of nuclear material in each transfer into or out of the material balance area can be determined; and (b) The physical inventory of nuclear material in the material balance area can be determined, in order that the nuclear material balance can be established for IAEA safeguards purposes.
Material Balance Report (MBR) A formal report from a national safeguards authority to the IAEA comparing consolidated inventory changes in a given period with the verified inventories at the start and end of that period.
Material Unaccounted For (MUF) A term used in nuclear materials accountancy to mean the difference between operator records and the verified physical inventory. A certain level of MUF is expected due to measurement processes. MUF does not usually indicate ‘missing' material – because it is a difference due to measurement, MUF can have either a negative or a positive value.
Mixed oxide fuel (MOX) Mixed oxide reactor fuel, consisting of a mixture of uranium and plutonium oxides. The plutonium content of fresh MOX fuel for an LWR is typically around 5–7%.
Moata Small training reactor previously located at Lucas Heights.
Moderator A material used to slow fast neutrons to thermal speeds where they can readily be absorbed by 235U or plutonium nuclei and initiate a fission reaction. The most commonly used moderator materials are light water, heavy water or graphite.
MWe Megawatts of electrical power
MWt Megawatts of thermal power
Natural uranium In nature, uranium consists predominantly of the isotope 238U (approx. 99.3%), with the fissile isotope 235U comprising only 0.711%.
Non-nuclear-weapon state(s) (NNWS) States not recognised by the NPT as having nuclear weapons at 1 January 1967 when the Treaty was negotiated.
NPT The NPT is the commonly used acronym for the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, whose objective is to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and weapons technology, promote cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and to further the goal of nuclear disarmament.
Nuclear material Any source material or special fissionable material as defined in Article XX of the IAEA Statute (in practice, this means uranium, thorium and plutonium).
Nuclear-weapon state(s) (NWS) States recognised by the NPT as having nuclear weapons at 1 January 1967 when the Treaty was negotiated, namely the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France and China.
Nuclide Nuclear species characterised by the number of protons (atomic number) and the number of neutrons. The total number of protons and neutrons is called the mass number of the nuclide.
NUMBAT ‘Nuclear Material Balances and Tracking' – ASNO's custom built nuclear database used to fulfil reporting requirements under Australia's safeguards agreements with the IAEA, track Australian Obligated Nuclear Material (AONM) overseas, and maintain a register of permit holders, as required under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation (Safeguards) Act 1987.
Old Chemical Weapons (OCW) Defined under the Chemical Weapons Convention as:
  • chemical weapons produced before 1925; or
  • chemical weapons produced between 1925 and 1946 that have deteriorated to such extent that they can no longer be used as chemical weapons.
On-Site Inspection (OSI) A short-notice, challenge-type inspection provided for in the CTBT as a means for investigating concerns about non- compliance with the prohibition on nuclear explosions.
Open Pool Australian Light-Water reactor (OPAL) The 20 MWt research reactor located at ANSTO, Lucas Heights, reached full power on 3 November 2006 and was officially opened on 20 April 2007.
Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) OPCW is an intergovernmental organisation and the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention based in The Hague, Netherlands. It oversees the global endeavour for the permanent and verifiable elimination of chemical weapons.
Other Chemical Production Facility (OCPF) Defined under the Chemical Weapons Convention as all plant sites that:
  • produced by synthesis during the previous calendar year more than 200 tonnes of unscheduled discrete organic chemicals; or
  • comprised one or more plants which produced by synthesis during the previous calendar year more than 30 tonnes of an unscheduled discrete organic chemical containing the elements phosphorus, sulphur or fluorine.
Physical Inventory Listing (PIL) A formal report from a national safeguards authority to the IAEA on nuclear materials inventories at a given time (generally the end of a Material Balance Report period).
Production (For CWC purposes) the formation of a chemical through chemical reaction. Production of chemicals specified by the CWC is declarable, even if produced as intermediates and irrespective of whether or not they are isolated.

(For safeguards purposes) Nuclear Production is the generation of special fissionable material through irradiation of fertile material in a reactor.
Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS) The PTS assists the CTBTO Preparatory Commission in the establishment of a global verification regime to monitor compliance with the CTBT.
239Pu An isotope of plutonium with atomic mass 239 (94 protons and 145 neutrons). 239Pu is the fissile isotope of plutonium most suitable for nuclear weapons.
R&D Research and Development
Radionuclide An isotope with an unstable nucleus that disintegrates and emits energy in the process. Radionuclides may occur naturally, but they can also be artificially produced, and are often called radioisotopes. One category of CTBT IMS stations is used to detect radionuclide particles in the air. Other IMS stations are equipped with radionuclide noble gas technology to detect the abundance of the noble gas xenon in the air.
Reprocessing Processing of spent nuclear fuel to separate uranium and plutonium from highly radioactive fission products.
Safeguards Inspector For domestic purposes, a person declared under section 57 of the Safeguards Act to undertake inspections to ensure compliance with provisions of the Act and to assist IAEA inspectors in the conduct of IAEA inspections and complementary access in Australia.
Seismic Referring to the movements of the earth and its crust that can be generated by, among other things, earthquakes, explosions and large impacts (e.g. meteors). The seismic component of the CTBT's IMS is a network of 50 primary stations and 120 auxiliary stations. Analysis of seismic waves can be used to distinguish between earthquakes and explosive events.
Small Quantities Protocol (SQP) A protocol to a state's safeguards agreement with the IAEA, for states with small quantities of nuclear material and no nuclear facilities. The protocol holds in abeyance most of the provisions of the state's safeguards agreement.
Source Material Uranium containing the mixture of isotopes occurring in nature; uranium depleted In the isotope 235U; thorium; or any of the foregoing in the form of metal, alloy, chemical compound, or concentrates.
Special Fissionable Material (SFM) 239Pu; 233U; uranium enriched in the isotopes 235 or 233; any material containing one or more of the foregoing. The term special fissionable material does not include source material.
Standing Advisory Group on Safeguard Implementation (SAGSI) An international group of experts appointed by, and advising, the IAEA Director General on safeguards implementation matters.
Technical Assistance Visit (TAV) The Technical Secretariat of the OPCW can, through a TAV, provide technical assistance and technical evaluation to States Parties in the implementation of the provisions of this Convention, including evaluation of scheduled and unscheduled chemicals.
Temporary Working Group (TWG) The OPCW's Director-General may, in consultation with the members of the Scientific Advisory Board, establish temporary working groups of scientific experts to provide recommendations on specific issues within a specific time frame.
232Th The only naturally occurring isotope of thorium, having an atomic mass of 232 (90 protons and 142 neutrons).
233U An isotope of uranium containing 233 nucleons, usually produced through neutron irradiation of 232Th.
235U An isotope of uranium containing 235 nucleons (92 protons and 143 neutrons) which occurs as 0.711% of natural uranium.
238U An isotope of uranium containing 238 nucleons (92 protons and 146 neutrons) which occurs as about 99.3% of natural uranium.
United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) Formal expressions of the opinion or will of United Nations organs.
Uranium ore concentrate (UOC) A commercial product of a uranium mining and milling operation usually containing a high proportion (greater than 90%) of uranium oxide.
Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Refers to nuclear, chemical, biological and occasionally radiological weapons.