David began his career studying fundamental nuclear and particle physics, spending more than a decade at many of the world’s premier research laboratories. More than half of that time was spent studying and understanding the properties of the elusive neutrino. In 2007, he moved to Sandia National Laboratories in California to lead an effort to turn this ghostly particle into a tool for monitoring nuclear reactors and assisting the international safeguards agencies. He obtained a PhD from the American University in nuclear physics.
- Antineutrino detection as applied to next generation treaties: Anti-neutrinos are fundamental particles whose detection is used to elucidate our fundamental understanding of A group at Sandia has used anti-neutrinos for a practical purpose: monitoring nuclear reactors. This novel approach, which has faced much skepticism over the years, uses these fundamental particles to directly monitor the fission in a reactor core from outside containment. Sandia’s demonstrations of this unobtrusive and incorruptible method’s sensitivity to reactor operational power and plutonium production have been critical in gaining international acceptance. We would like to investigate other uses for antineutrino detection outside of the standard safeguards applications. These include:
- The use of antineutrino detection in Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty applications. In particular, such detectors could be used as unobtrusive probes of the fissile material content in naval reactors.
- Antineutrino detection could be useful to compliment current technologies in the enforcement of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. Antineutrinos provide an unambiguous signature of nuclear fission events.