Shielding, distance and time are three critical factors for researchers working with radioactive materials. This device — called a “hot cell” — provides all three. The walls and window of this big metal-encased hot cell are heavily shielded, protecting the operator from the highly radioactive materials placed inside. Robotic arms (whose controls are seen extending outside the hot cell) provide distance, so the operator doesn’t need to actually touch the radioactive material inside. With shielding and distance provided, the researcher can then take the time to carefully do delicate work, like diluting a highly radioactive liquid as the first step in preparing it as a NIST Standard Reference Material.