Shipping Research Samples to ORNL

Know the Rules
First and foremost, it is important to know the rules involving shipment of materials, radioactivity regulations, and key contact personnel prior to any sample shipment. (Please refer to the specific instrument you will be using to determine specific shipping requirements.)
 
Know your facility rules regarding radioactivity and who the radiological safety officer is. Coordinate your plans with them.
 
Know the federal, state, and local laws and regulations for shipping. If shipping from outside of the United States, you are responsible for all aspects of the U.S. Customs clearance process. This would include payment of applicable duties or fees, which can be accomplished by selecting "Delivery Duty Paid" (DDP) as the Incoterms rules on a proforma invoice. Often, express carriers will provide brokerage services by filing necessary documents with U.S. Customs as the Importer of Record and then billing your account for any consequent duties or fees.
 
When to Ship
Samples should arrive at least 3 business days (7 days preferred) before your scheduled experiment day to avoid any delays in your experiment. We recommend shipping your samples when you make your travel plans.
 
Note about shipping providers
You are encouraged to use a shipping provider who delivers directly to ORNL (ex. FedEx, UPS, DHL). These shipments are considered priorities and are processed through ORNL shipping facilities within 8-24 hours of delivery. Please be aware that use of the USPS may delay the processing of your shipment, due to a longer lead time for sorting.
 
Our required process for handling samples
  1. Confirm your sample information in the proposal system when prompted to do so. The confirmation should occur after your proposal has reached the approval state in our system. You will be prompted to confirm the proposal at that time in IPTS. Indicate whether you want to have your samples returned to you or disposed of. This information will be used to process your sample after your experiment is complete.
  2. All Samples Must be confirmed and approved by the facility before arrival. Do not send samples that have not been confirmed and approved in advance.
  3. Proposal confirmation requires the correct parcel shipping address. It is best to assume residual radioactivity. Discuss with your institution's radiation safety officer to determine the most conservative shipping address to insure no delays in returning your sample. We encourage including your Radiation safety officer's contact information, which will make the process much smoother for you. Make sure that the recipient listed can receive radioactive materials per your facility's rules.
  4. Each shipment must include a detailed packing list of all samples and materials shipped. All samples must be individually labeled/identified. For small samples, mark the container or position in the sample holder with a number and include a numbered list. Labels or packing list must indicate sample constituents/formula.
  5. Include all Material Safety Data Sheets. If one is not available for your samples, send the Material Safety Data Sheets for each constituent/ingredient (not element). If you need to create one, you can click here.
 
Noting special handling requirements 
If you have special requirements, please include them in the Attention Line (Refrigerated, -20 freezer, -80 freezer, Anaerobic) otherwise leave blank.
 
Note: If special temperature is selected, do not ship over the weekend. Send tracking number to neutronlabs@ornl.gov and request delivery confirmation if needed.
 
 
What a typical sample label should look like:
 
For experiments at SNS
Recipient: IPTS XXXXX, SNS User sample [Replace the XXXXX with your IPTS number]
Oak Ridge National Laboratory/SNS Site
9500 Spallation Drive
Bldg 8600, Rm G-201 <Special requirements (example: freezer or inert gas)>
Oak Ridge, TN 37830
SNS Sample Management Desk phone number: 865-382-8466
 
For experiments at HFIR
Recipient: IPTS XXXXX, HFIR User sample [Replace the XXXXX with your IPTS number]
Oak Ridge National Laboratory / HFIR Site
1 Bethel Valley Road
Bldg 7972 Room 100 <Special requirements (example: freezer or inert gas)>
Oak Ridge, TN 37830
HFIR Sample Management Desk phone number: 865-576-9030
 
If, for some reason, the carrier (like UPS) REQUIRES a ship to person, ship to "Sam Pell"
 
Radioactive Samples (DOT Class 7)
For radioactive samples (DOT Class 7) please use this address (these will have check in procedures that must occur at ORNL).
 
Unless they are fissile materials, special nuclear materials, or require something beyond a typical commercial carrier, ship them to the address below with the proper DOT packaging, placarding, and/or and labeling for the radionuclides and activity. Please include your facility's report of radionuclide composition as this will aid us in handling the sample.
 
For experiments at SNS
Recipient: IPTS XXXXX, SNS User sample [Replace the XXXX with your IPTS number]
Oak Ridge National Laboratory / SNS Site
1 Bethel Valley Road
Bldg 7120 <Special requirements (example: freezer or inert gas)>
Oak Ridge, TN 37830
SNS Sample Management Desk phone number: 865-382-8466
 
For experiments at HFIR
Recipient: IPTS XXXXX, HFIR User sample [Replace the XXXX with your IPTS number]
Oak Ridge National Laboratory / HFIR Site
1 Bethel Valley Road
Bldg 7120 <Special requirements (example: freezer or inert gas)>
Oak Ridge, TN 37830
HFIR Sample Management Desk phone number: 865-576-9030
 
Samples that are fissile materials, special nuclear materials
For samples that are fissile materials, special nuclear materials, or require something beyond a typical commercial carrier, please contact neutronlabs@ornl.gov. We will coordinate with our Radiation Protection folks. 
 
Sample Disposition
 
What happens to your sample after your experiment?
Providing us with an accurate shipping address in advance of the experiment is key in preventing delay of receiving your sample back after the experiment ends.  You are given two options for sample disposition in the proposal system, either sample disposal or requesting for us to ship back to you.
 
What about sample activation?
Discuss any outbound shipping needs with your instrument contact.
 
At the end of an experiment, we survey all samples for activation. If a sample's level of radioactivity prohibits its removal from the building, it will be stored on-site until it can be safely shipped to your home institution. If you or your institution cannot take receipt of a sample after the experiment, special arrangements, up to and including payment of disposal or shipping fees, will need to be made.
 
ORNL staff will determine when samples and user-supplied equipment can be returned after experiment completion. Samples can be stored at ORNL only for a limited period of time and with explicit agreement from the Neutron Scattering Science Division environment, safety, and health manager.