A computer model for analyzing low-yield threshold test ban treaties

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With the ratification of the Threshold Test Ban Treaty (TTBT), there has been increased interest in lowering the nuclear test ban threshold from its present level of 150 kilotons and much debate about what this lower threshold should be. The uncertainties associated with verifying the TTBT, along with the added difficulties associated with lower yields, have aroused concern that a Low-Yield Threshold Test Ban Treaty (LYTTBT) may not be sufficiently verifiable. This report documents a computer model for analyzing the verifiability of LYTTBT options. The model systematically accounts for the uncertainty inherent in the treaty verification process. It helps the ... continued below

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Pages: (32 p)

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Bradford, R.M. & Sokkappa, P.R. November 1, 1990.

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With the ratification of the Threshold Test Ban Treaty (TTBT), there has been increased interest in lowering the nuclear test ban threshold from its present level of 150 kilotons and much debate about what this lower threshold should be. The uncertainties associated with verifying the TTBT, along with the added difficulties associated with lower yields, have aroused concern that a Low-Yield Threshold Test Ban Treaty (LYTTBT) may not be sufficiently verifiable. This report documents a computer model for analyzing the verifiability of LYTTBT options. The model systematically accounts for the uncertainty inherent in the treaty verification process. It helps the user gain insights into the interactions among monitoring capability, beliefs about Soviet testing strategies, and the likelihood of missing violations or making false accusations of violations. The model can also account for possible Soviet evasion strategies that could systematically reduce the US estimates of Soviet test yields. There are eight components of the model, each facilitating a different type of analysis. The components are: cavity decoupling, verification effectiveness, probability of missed violation, probability of false accusation, detectable violation, distinguishable yield, required monitoring capability and expected utility. The next six components address the verifiability of alternate LYTTBTs from different perspectives. Finally, the Expected Utility component computes the expected overall utility of each threshold option. Decision makers can use the various components of the model to study issues related to the verifiability of various LYTTBT options. Because the model is explicit and quantitative, it provides decision makers with rational, defensible analyses, which can be used as input when making important treaty and verification decisions. 2 refs. 5 figs.

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Pages: (32 p)

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OSTI; NTIS; GPO Dep.

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  • Other: DE91006222
  • Report No.: UCRL-ID-105666
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-48
  • DOI: 10.2172/6337102 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 6337102
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc1207776

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • November 1, 1990

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • July 5, 2018, 11:11 p.m.

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  • Dec. 11, 2018, 2:28 p.m.

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Bradford, R.M. & Sokkappa, P.R. A computer model for analyzing low-yield threshold test ban treaties, report, November 1, 1990; California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1207776/: accessed December 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.