This paper gives a historical survey of the SIEMPELKAMP process, which produces components for nuclear industry from radioactively contaminated scrap from nuclear power plants. It describes the bases for this safe method of material re-use and evaluates the experiences gained in the Krefeld plant within the past twelve years. In total, approx. 7,000 tons have been recycled. The licensing procedure in Germany is described, and the activity limits for treating the metal are given. Great importance was attached to the information of the public to obtain acceptance by the workers, the population, and the political parties. (author).