FAS President Dr. Charles Ferguson and Senior Fellow for Nonproliferation Law and Policy Mr. Chris Bidwell spoke at the Radiological and Nuclear Detection Symposium hosted by VIP GlobalNet LLC on March 25-26, 2014 at the Mason Inn at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA.
Dr. Ferguson’s presentation was on the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit that was held this week in the Netherlands. Ferguson discussed progress with securing dangerous nuclear materials (such as hundreds of tons of HEU that have been downblended to LEU and research and isotope production reactors that have been shut down) and remaining international challenges to securing fissile materials. Dr. Ferguson’s presentation slides are available here (PDF).
Mr. Bidwell spoke about the recent Defense Science Board (DSB) report from January 2014 on monitoring and verification and how they will be used with Iran in the wake of the deal with the P5+1. The DSB report found that nuclear verification and monitoring capabilities have atrophied, “are either inadequate, or more often, do not exist.” New monitoring technologies need to take into account many factors including: ability to detect smaller programs, monitor for proliferation vs. monitoring for compliance, and issues of crowd sourcing. Mr. Bidwell spoke about other verification concerns and provided recommendations on how to improve current verification tools. Presentation slides are available here (PDF).