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[en] The prevention of illicit transport of nuclear and radioactive material across borders is part of nuclear non-proliferation measures and important in prohibiting terrorist acts. In the context of the TACIS (Technical Assistance to the Commonwealth of Independent States) program of the European Commission, the Fraunhofer INT leads a consortium working on a project concerning the monitoring of vehicles and pedestrians at Ukrainian border stations by means of radiation detection systems. Several Ukrainian border crossing stations to the EU were assessed, also by Fraunhofer INT scientists, concerning the necessities and options for installing such equipment. Various aspects were taken into consideration, e.g. the station's general layout, the traffic flow, and detection systems already present. The course and the preliminary results of the project are presented.
[en] The national statement made by the Japan Government at 2010 Nuclear Security Summit (Washington D.C., U.S.A.) was to develop its nuclear forensics detection and analysis technologies in a three-year period and to share them with the international community to contribute to strengthening the nuclear security regime. The Japan Atomic Energy Agency, the organization that possesses analytical capabilities with the potential to fulfill this nuclear forensics mission, started R and D on nuclear forensics technology from JFY 2011. The main areas of development are isotopic ratio analysis, impurity analysis, uranium age determination, etc. The cooperation with US-DOE and EC-JRC were also started to effectively promote the technical development. In the presentation reported will be progress in R and D to establish nuclear forensics analytical capabilities and international cooperation. (author)
[en] Fixed radiation portal monitors (RPMs) deployed at border, seaport, airport and key traffic checkpoints have played an important role in preventing the illicit trafficking and transport of nuclear and radioactive materials. However, the RPM is usually large and heavy and can't easily be moved to different locations. These reasons motivate us to develop a mobile radiation detection system. The objective of this paper is to report our experience on developing the mobile radiation detection system for search and detection of nuclear and radioactive materials during road transport. Field tests to characterize the developed detection system were performed at various speeds and distances between the radioactive isotope (RI) transporting car and the measurement car. Results of measurements and detection limits of our system are described in this paper. The mobile radiation detection system developed should contribute to defending public's health and safety and the environment against nuclear and radiological terrorism by detecting nuclear or radioactive material hidden illegally in a vehicle
[en] In June 2000, during records reconciliation and verification of the spent fuel pool inventory, the licensee for a nuclear power plant identified that two full-length irradiated fuel rods, which had been separated from their parent assemblies and placed in a container for individual rods in the spent fuel pool, were not in the location specified in the nuclear material accounting records. The licensee conducted an extensive investigation, which concluded that the missing fuel rods had very likely been transported to a licensed low-level radioactive waste disposal facility. The State’s SRA conducted an inspection that reviewed the results of the licensee’s investigation and concurred with the licensee’s conclusions regarding the location of the two rods. The licensee was cited for failure to control and account for the two rod segments, and was issued a Severity Level II violation with a monetary penalty
[en] Any mention of boosting nuclear forensics capabilities can have governments clutching their wallets reflexively. That's because it sounds very high tech, and therefore very expensive. In a time of austerity measures, countries can find it difficult to take on additional financial responsibilities, even when those responsibilities have to do with nuclear security. But according to the IAEA's Office of Nuclear Security, becoming proficient in nuclear forensics isn't as expensive as it initially appears. Nuclear forensics is the science of uncovering the origin and history of nuclear materials, especially those found at a crime scene. ''And every country can engage in a nuclear forensics examination, using existing technical capabilities that are readily adapted as part of a nuclear security infrastructure,'' says David Smith, IAEA Nuclear Security Coordinator. ''They already have the right analytical equipment - spectrometry and inorganic chemistry equipment, for example - in universities, regulatory bodies and mining companies, just to name a few places. And they have much of the expertise - trained technicians and law enforcement officials - but are unaware that putting these things together along with workable plans and strategies - that the IAEA can provide - can create an effective means for the practice of nuclear forensics''
[en] The assessment of nuclear material quantities located in nuclear plants requires knowledge of additions and subtractions of amounts of different types of materials. Most generally, the quantity of nuclear material held is deduced from 3 parameters: a mass (or a volume of product); a concentration of nuclear material in the product considered; and an isotopic composition. Global uncertainties associated with nuclear material quantities depend upon the confidence level of results obtained in the measurement of every different parameter. Uncertainties are generally estimated by considering five influencing parameters (ISHIKAWA’s rule): the material itself; the measurement system; the applied method; the environmental conditions; and the operator. A good practice guide, to be used to deal with weighing errors and problems encountered, is presented in the paper.
[en] Reprocessing plants require continuous and integrated safeguards activities by inspectors of the IAEA and Euratom because of their proliferation-sensitivity as complex facilities handling large quantities of direct use nuclear material. In support of both organizations, the JRC has developed a solution monitoring software package (DAI, Data Analysis and Interpretation) which has been implemented in the main commercial European reprocessing plants and which allows enhanced monitoring of nuclear materials in the processed solutions. This tool treats data acquired from different sensor types (e.g. from pressure transducers monitoring the solution levels in tanks). Collected signals are often noisy because of the instrumentation itself and/or because of ambient and operational conditions (e.g. pumps, ventilation systems or electromagnetic interferences) and therefore require filtering. Filtering means reduction of information and has to be applied correctly to avoid misinterpretation of the process steps. This paper describes the study of some filters one of which is the centered moving median which has been revealed as a powerful tool for solution monitoring.
[en] Nuclear terrorism is a continuing threat. Progress has been made in recent years in ensuring that nuclear and other radioactive material, as well as associated facilities, are properly protected everywhere in the world. But much remains to be done