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Personal Annunciation Device

Y-12 National Security Complex

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PDF Document PublicationPatent (275 KB)

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Fact Sheet
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The PAD has concurrent alarms, displays building information and alarm status, and contains embedded “intelligence” for enhanced reliability.
The PAD has concurrent alarms, displays building information and alarm status, and contains embedded “intelligence” for enhanced reliability.

Technology Marketing Summary

The Personal Annunciation Device provides both the means to notify individuals instantly of an emergency situation, and also their approximate whereabouts to command personnel. This technology integrates RFID, wireless communication, sensors with alarm states into an integrated recognize-send-receive-account system. This technology can be adapted to most any high-hazard or emergency condition.


The PAD may very well be the world’s smallest self-arming multiple-use accident notification device. The prototype of the nonnuclear-based, radio frequency receiver is about the size of a car key fob, making it easy to wear over an extended time. It also has a provision for personal accountability through radio frequency identification (RFID) technology.

R&D Magazine recognized the PAD as one of 2007’s most significant technological innovations, awarding it with the prestigious R&D 100 Award.
This is the first time personal wireless technology has been integrated into a safety-related nuclear accident alert system. The PAD provides for a personal alert over a much wider area than portable detection devices.

The Y-12 National Security Complex conceived and led the effort to develop the PAD in response to the need for personal radiation detection instruments as notification devices within the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Nuclear Security Enterprise. Y-12 collaborated with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and the Kansas City Plant (KCP) to complete the prototype. ORNL provided a micro-power radio, and KCP was responsible for packaging the PAD receiver components. Y-12 then integrated the prototype into existing plant systems.

  • Has concurrent alarms (vibrations, light, sound)
  • Displays building information
  • Displays alarm status
  • Contains embedded self-checking or “intelligence” for enhanced reliability (gives user information on battery life and signals)
  • Smaller than a pager
  • Uses commercially available parts
  • Secure
  • Reliable
  • Requires little human interface
  • Ensures annunciation where audibility is required
  • Improves personal accountability through RFID technology
Applications and Industries

The PAD can be easily adapted for chemical, biological, or any other hazard events where traditional notification means are not adequate and rapid alert and accountability are required.

Subsequent generations of the PAD aim to be 50% smaller as well as even more user friendly.

More Information

Inventor - Peter Angelo

2007 R&D 100 Award Winner

Patents and Patent Applications
ID Number
Title and Abstract
Primary Lab
Patent 7,876,213
Personal annunciation device
A personal annunciation device (PAD) providing, in an area of interest, compensatory annunciation of the presence of an abnormal condition in a hazardous area and accountability of the user of the PAD. Compensatory annunciation supplements primary annunciation provided by an emergency notification system (ENS). A detection system detects an abnormal condition, and a wireless transmission system transmits a wireless transmission to the PAD. The PAD has a housing enclosing the components of the PAD including a communication module for receiving the wireless transmission, a power supply, processor, memory, annunciation system, and RFID module. The RFID module has an RFID receiver that listens for an RFID transmission from an RFID reader disposed in a portal of an area of interest. The PAD identifies the transmission and changes its operating state based on the transmission. The RFID readers recognize, record, and transmit the state of the PAD to a base station providing accountability of the wearer.
Y-12 National Security Complex 01/25/2011
Technology Status
Technology IDDevelopment StageAvailabilityPublishedLast Updated
2048Prototype - TRL 6 - Model/prototype is tested in relevant environment - Representative model or prototype system, which is well beyond that of TRL 5, is tested in a relevant environment. Represents a major step up in a technology’s demonstrated readiness. Examples include testing a prototype in a high-fidelity laboratory environment or in simulated operational environment.Available03/28/201112/06/2016

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