Representatives from 10 countries gather for nuclear forensics workshop

The National Nuclear Security Administration announced on Friday it completed a 10-day hands-on nuclear forensics workshop cosponsored by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The workshop was held in Richland, Wa., and had 26 nuclear scientists, law enforcement officials and forensic specialists in attendance from 10 countries, including Algeria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Pakistan, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

"Our partnership with the IAEA in hosting this workshop reflects our commitment to developing and promoting nuclear forensic science, a field of critical importance to nuclear security," NNSA Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Anne Harrington said. "Nuclear forensics supports the NNSA mission to advance global nuclear security by strengthening material attribution efforts. We look forward to continued engagements with the IAEA and the experts who participated."

The workshop focused on tools to help law enforcement investigations that involve nuclear or radioactive material used outside of regulatory control. Hands-on training involved preparing evidence for analysis and conducting measurements using gamma and alpha spectrometry.

Los Alamos National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation, the European Commission's Joint Research Centre Institute for Transuranium Elements, the United Kingdom's Atomic Weapons Establishment and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security contributed to the workshop with expertise and resources.