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Measurement approaches to support future warhead arms control transparency

Description: Transparency on warhead stockpiles, warhead dismantlement, and fissile material stockpiles in nuclear weapons states will become increasingly important in the move beyond START II toward lower quantities of warheads. Congressional support for further warhead reductions will likely depend on the degree of irreversibility, or in other words, the rapidity with which warhead inventories could be reconstituted. Whether irreversibility considerations can be satisfied will depend on monitoring dismantlement as well as constraining the available stockpile of fissile materials for possible refabrication into warheads. Measurement techniques designed to address the above problems will need to consider NPT Article 1 obligations as well as Russian and US classification regulations, which prohibit or restrict the transfer of nuclear warhead design information to other states. Classification considerations currently limit the potential completeness of future inspections of weapons materials. Many conventional international safeguards approaches are not currently viable for arms control applications because they would reveal weapons design information. The authors discuss a variety of technical measures that may help to improve transparence of warhead and fissile material stockpiles and may enable limited warhead dismantlement transparency.
Date: December 31, 1998
Creator: Olinger, C.T.; Frankle, C.M.; Johnson, M.W. & Poths, J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Prospects for large dynamic range isotope analysis using photon burst mass spectrometry

Description: Photon Burst Mass Spectrometry is a relatively new and untried method which may complement and extend the impressive achievements of Resonance Ionization Mass Spectrometry and Accelerator Mass Spectrometry in the field of large dynamic range isotope analysis. Theoretical predictions indicate that measurements in the 10/sup /minus/11/ to 10/sup /minus/15/ range are possible in a reasonable period of time with zero background. Experimentally only the very first demonstrations of PBMS with stable isotopes have been completed. 8 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.
Date: January 1, 1988
Creator: Fairbank, W. M., Jr.; LaBelle, R. D.; Keller, R. A.; Miller, C. M.; Poths, J. & Fearey, B. L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A new approach for miniaturization of multiple faraday cup collectors.

Description: The mass spectrometry section in CST-7 has been working for several years on a novel so0lution to overcome the size and placement restrictions of multiple Faraday cup collectors. Use of simultaneous collection of multiple isotopes both increases precision in the isotopic measurements and shortens the data collection time. Our application is for the measurement of the isotopic composition of Xe, ionized in a source that produces a large (10{sup -11} amp) but variable ion beam.
Date: January 1, 2002
Creator: Banar, J. C. (Joseph C.); Chamberlin, E. P. (Edwin P.); Poths, J. (Jane); Perrin, R. E. (Richard E.) & Chastagner, P. (Phillip)
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Noble gas atmospheric monitoring at reprocessing facilities

Description: The discovery in Iraq after the Gulf War of the existence of a large clandestine nuclear-weapon program has led to an across-the-board international effort, dubbed Programme 93+2, to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards. One particularly significant potential change is the introduction of environmental monitoring (EM) techniques as an adjunct to traditional safeguards methods. Monitoring of stable noble gas (Kr, Xe) isotopic abundances at reprocessing plant stacks appears to be able to yield information on the burnup and type of the fuel being processed. To estimate the size of these signals, model calculations of the production of stable Kr, Xe nuclides in reactor fuel and the subsequent dilution of these nuclides in the plant stack are carried out for two case studies: reprocessing of PWR fuel with a burnup of 35 GWd/tU, and reprocessing of CAND fuel with a burnup of 1 GWd/tU. For each case, a maximum-likelihood analysis is used to determine the fuel burnup and type from the isotopic data.
Date: May 1, 1997
Creator: Nakhleh, C.W.; Perry, R.T. Jr.; Poths, J.; Stanbro, W.D.; Wilson, W.B. & Fearey, B.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Status of volcanism studies for the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project

Description: Chapter 1 introduces the volcanism issue for the Yucca Mountain site and provides the reader with an overview of the organization, content, and significant conclusions of this report. The risk of future basaltic volcanism is the primary topic of concern including both events that intersect a potential repository and events that occur near or within the waste isolation system of a repository. Chapter 2 describes the volcanic history of the Yucca Mountain region (YMR) and emphasizes the Pliocene and Quaternary volcanic record, the interval of primary concern for volcanic risk assessment. The Lathrop Wells volcanic center is described in detail because it is the youngest basalt center in the YMR. Chapter 3 describes the tectonic setting of the YMR and presents and assesses the significance of multiple alternative tectonic models. Geophysical data are described for the YMR and are used as an aid to understand the distribution of basaltic volcanic centers. Chapter 4 discusses the petrologic and geochemical features of basaltic volcanism in the YMR, the southern Great Basin and the Basin and Range province. The long time of activity and characteristic small volume of the Postcaldera basalt of the YMR result in one of the lowest eruptive rates in a volcanic field in the southwest United States. Chapter 5 summarizes current concepts of the segregation, ascent, and eruption of basalt magma. Chapter 6 summarizes the history of volcanism studies (1979 through early 1994), including work for the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project and overview studies by the state of Nevada and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Chapter 7 summarizes probabilistic volcanic hazard assessment using a three-part conditional probability model. Chapter 8 describes remaining volcanism work judged to be needed to complete characterization studies for the YMR. Chapter 9 summarizes the conclusions of this volcanism status report.
Date: February 1, 1995
Creator: Crowe, B.; Perry, F.; Murrell, M.; Poths, J.; Valentine, G.A.; Wells, S. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Noble gas atmospheric monitoring for international safeguards at reprocessing plants

Description: The use of environmental sampling is a major component of the improvements of International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards being carried out under Program 93+2. Nonradioactive noble gas isotopic measurements in the effluent stream of large reprocessing facilities may provide useful confirmatory information on the burnup and reactor type of the spent fuel undergoing reprocessing. The authors have taken and analyzed stack samples at an operating facility. The data show clear fission signals. The authors are currently applying a maximum-likelihood estimation procedure to determine the fuel burnup from these data. They anticipate that the general features involved in the table noble gas problem--selection of appropriate signals, measurement of those signals under realistic conditions, and inverse calculation of parameters of interest from the environmental data--will be present in all environmental sampling problems. These methods should therefore be widely applicable.
Date: November 1, 1997
Creator: Nakhleh, C.W.; Poths, J.; Stanbro, W.D.; Perry, R.T. Jr.; Wilson, W.B. & Fearey, B.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Lathrop Wells volcanic center: Status of field and geochronology studies

Description: The Lathrop Wells volcanic center is located 20 km south of the potential Yucca Mountain site, at the south end of the Yucca Mountain range. It has long been recognized as the youngest basalt center in the region. However, determination of the age and eruptive history of the center has proven problematic. The purpose of this paper is to describe the status of field and geochronology studies of the Lathrop Wells center. Our perspective is that it is critical to assess all possible methods for obtaining cross-checking data to resolve chronology and field problems. It is equally important to consider application of the range of chronology methods available in Quaternary geologic research. Such an approach seeks to increase the confidence in data interpretations through obtaining convergence among separate isotopic, radiogenic, and age-correlated methods. Finally, the assumptions, strengths, and weaknesses of each dating method need to be carefully described to facilitate an impartial evaluation of results.
Date: March 1, 1993
Creator: Crowe, B.; Morley, R.; Wells, S.; Geissman, J.; McDonald, E.; McFadden, L. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Lathrop Wells volcanic center: Status of field and geochronology studies

Description: The purpose of this paper is to describe the status of field and geochronology studies of the Lathrop Wells volcanic center. Our perspective is that it is critical to assess all possible methods for obtaining cross-checking data to resolve chronology and field problems. It is equally important to consider application of the range of chronology methods available in Quaternary geologic research. Such an approach seeks to increase the confidence in data interpretations through obtaining convergence among separate isotopic, radiogenic, and age-correlated methods. Finally, the assumptions, strengths, and weaknesses of each dating method need to be carefully described to facilitate an impartial evaluation of results. The paper is divided into two parts. The first part describes the status of continuing field studies for the volcanic center for this area south of Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The second part presents an overview of the preliminary results of ongoing chronology studies and their constraints on the age and stratigraphy of the Lathrop Wells volcanic center. Along with the chronology data, the assumptions, strengths, and limitations of each methods are discussed.
Date: March 1, 1992
Creator: Crowe, B.; Morley, R.; Wells, S.; Geissman, J.; McDonald, E.; McFadden, L. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Use of Stable Noble Gases as a Predictor of Reactor Fuel Type and Exposure

Description: Ensuring spent reactor fuel is not produced to provide weapons-grade plutonium is becoming a major concern as many countries resort to nuclear power as a solution to their energy problems. Proposed solutions range from the development of proliferation resistant fuel to continuous monitoring of the fuel. This paper discusses the use of the stable isotopes of the fissiogenic noble gases, xenon and krypton, for determining the burnup characteristics, fuel type, and the reactor type of the fuel from which the sample was obtained. The gases would be collected on-stack as the fuel is reprocessed, and thus confirm that the fuel is as declared.
Date: August 30, 1999
Creator: Fearey, B.L.; Charlton, W.S.; Perry, R.T.; Poths, J.; Wilson, W.B.; Hemberger, P.H. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department