Thrust Area 4

Detection of Undeclared Activities and Inaccessible Facilities

(Lead: Columbia (P. Richards); Contributing universities: UM (J. Lee), UW (P. Wilson), OSU (A. Farsoni), UH (M. Garcés); Contributing labs: LLNL, SNL, LANL, PNNL)

“Nuclear weapon testing … is a process intimately intertwined with the design of nuclear weapons systems” (Donald Kerr, 1988, former LANL Director). This is the underlying reason why the CTBT is so significant: even its opponents recognize the importance of an effective capability to monitor nuclear explosions. Nuclear explosion monitoring of course must be done regardless of the status of the CTBT, for example to evaluate the test program of a potential adversary. The main technical challenges are to gather and interpret information from seismic, infrasound, hydro-acoustic, and radionuclide sensors, and from space-based imagery, in order to achieve detection and identification of nuclear explosions even if conducted with intent to evade monitoring systems. In this thrust area, we propose interdisciplinary research to enhance information derived from three of these modalities, and to engage with the data analytics group for unifying methods that can extract quantitative information from multiple sensor types.