Measurement techniques for the verification of excess weapons materials

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The end of the superpower arms race has resulted in an unprecedented reduction in stockpiles of deployed nuclear weapons. Numerous proposals have been put forward and actions have been taken to ensure the irreversibility of nuclear arms reductions, including unilateral initiatives such as those made by President Clinton in September 1993 to place fissile materials no longer needed for a deterrent under international inspection, and bilateral and multilateral measures currently being negotiated. For the technologist, there is a unique opportunity to develop the technical means to monitor nuclear materials that have been declared excess to nuclear weapons programs, to provide ... continued below

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8 p.

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Tape, J. W.; Eccleston, G. W. & Yates, M. A. December 1, 1998.

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Description

The end of the superpower arms race has resulted in an unprecedented reduction in stockpiles of deployed nuclear weapons. Numerous proposals have been put forward and actions have been taken to ensure the irreversibility of nuclear arms reductions, including unilateral initiatives such as those made by President Clinton in September 1993 to place fissile materials no longer needed for a deterrent under international inspection, and bilateral and multilateral measures currently being negotiated. For the technologist, there is a unique opportunity to develop the technical means to monitor nuclear materials that have been declared excess to nuclear weapons programs, to provide confidence that reductions are taking place and that the released materials are not being used again for nuclear explosive programs. However, because of the sensitive nature of these materials, a fundamental conflict exists between the desire to know that the bulk materials or weapon components in fact represent evidence of warhead reductions, and treaty commitments and national laws that require the protection of weapons design information. This conflict presents a unique challenge to technologists. The flow of excess weapons materials, from deployed warheads through storage, disassembly, component storage, conversion to bulk forms, and disposition, will be described in general terms. Measurement approaches based on the detection of passive or induced radiation will be discussed along with the requirement to protect sensitive information from release to unauthorized parties. Possible uses of measurement methods to assist in the verification of arms reductions will be described. The concept of measuring attributes of items rather than quantitative mass-based inventory verification will be discussed along with associated information-barrier concepts required to protect sensitive information.

Physical Description

8 p.

Notes

INIS; OSTI as DE99000740

Source

  • 20. ESARDA annual meeting with seminar on modern verification techniques: similarities, synergies and challenges, Helsinki (Finland), 11-15 May 1998

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  • Other: DE99000740
  • Report No.: LA-UR--98-2041
  • Report No.: CONF-9805128--
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-36
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 296653
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc682760

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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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  • December 1, 1998

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • July 25, 2015, 2:20 a.m.

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  • May 5, 2016, 7:36 p.m.

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Tape, J. W.; Eccleston, G. W. & Yates, M. A. Measurement techniques for the verification of excess weapons materials, article, December 1, 1998; New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc682760/: accessed December 13, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.