Obama Admin Releases New Nuclear Warhead Numbers
In a speech to the Review Conference of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry disclosed new information about the size of the U.S. nuclear weapon stockpile, declaring that as of September 2014 there were 4,717 warheads. Additionally, Kerry disclosed the official number of retired warheads in line for dismantlement (2,500), which had not been revealed before. Hans Kristensen writes that this surprise disclosure is an important diplomatic gesture that will help the United States make its case at the NPT review conference that it is living up to its obligations under the treaty.LEARN MORE
Is China Planning to Build More Missile Submarines?
Over the past few months, several U.S. defense and intelligence officials have stated for the record that China is planning to build significantly more nuclear-powered missile submarines than previously assumed. Recently, the commander of US Pacific Command (PACOM), Admiral Samuel Locklear, stated that in addition to the three Jin-class SSBNs currently in operation, “up to five more may enter service by the end of the decade.” Hans Kristensen writes that there are many questions related to the building of more subs, including the timetable and operation, as China does not have much experience operating SSBNs on lengthy patrols.LEARN MORE
Russian Nuclear Forces, 2015
In the latest Nuclear Notebook, Hans Kristensen and Robert Norris examine Russia's nuclear forces. Currently, Russia is modernizing its strategic and nonstrategic warheads; it currently has 4,500 nuclear warheads and 1,780 are deployed on missiles and bomber bases. Additionally, there are 700 strategic warheads and 2,000 nonstrategic warheads in storage, and an estimated 3,200 retired but largely intact warheads awaiting dismantlement.LEARN MORE
New Report Examines Naval Nuclear Reactors and Use of Highly Enriched Uranium
FAS convened an independent, nonpartisan task force of experts from the national security, nuclear engineer, nonproliferation and nuclear security fields to examine effective ways to monitor and safeguard HEU and LEU in the naval sector and alternatives to HEU for naval propulsion to improve nuclear security and nonproliferation. The results of the year-long task force study are compiled in the new report, Naval Nuclear Propulsion: Assessing Benefits and Risks.LEARN MORE