• ARGUMENT: DHS & BIODEFENSEReforming DHS’s Biodefense Operations and Governance

    Today’s biological threats show no signs of desisting any time soon. Naturally occurring outbreaks, epidemics and pandemics, and laboratory accidents pose a growing challenge – while the number of high-containment laboratories and amount of dangerous research continues to increase unabated. “DHS, as chief among those federal departments and agencies responsible for securing the homeland, must overcome its current state of fractionation and demonstrate to the rest of the government, country, and world that it is capable of coordinating and leading efforts in biodefense and other arenas,” Carrie Cordero and Asha M. George write.

  • IRAN’S NUKESCodifying Support for Nuclear Inspections in Iran

    By David Albright

    The main obstacle for a new nuclear deal with Iran is Iran’s disregard of its safeguards commitments and defiance of standard International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) procedures are more problematic for a nuclear deal. Resolving those outstanding inspection issues offers a far more promising pathway to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons in the long run.

  • AIRPOR SECURITYComputer Code to Speed Up Airport Security

    Imagine moving through airport security without having to take off your shoes or belt or getting pulled aside. Researchers are working on the Open Threat Assessment Platform, which allows the Transportation Security Administration to respond more quickly and easily to threats to air travel safety.

  • NUCLEAR WASTEThe Future of Nuclear Waste: What’s the Plan and Can It Be Safe?

    By Lewis Blackburn

    The UK is planning to significantly expand its nuclear capability — from approximately 8 gigawatts (GW) today to 24GW by 2050, which would meet around 25% of the forecast UK energy demand — in an effort to decrease its reliance on carbon-based fossil fuels. New reactors will inevitably mean more radioactive waste. Above-ground nuclear waste storage isn’t a feasible long term plan. What are the alternatives?

  • WAR IN UKRAINERussia's Claims of Ukrainian Biological Weapons: A Propaganda Ploy?

    By Roman Goncharenko

    Since its invasion of Ukraine, Russia has claimed Kyiv is developing biological weapons with support from the US and Germany. Experts familiar with laboratories in Ukraine say the accusations are groundless.

  • ARGUMENT: IRAN’S NUKESTo Check Iran’s Missiles, JCPOA Re-Entry is a Must

    Iran’s missile program is a cause for international concern. John Krzyzaniak and Akshai Vikram write that Iran’s increasing willingness and ability to launch missiles at neighboring countries merits a coordinated, international response. If Iran were to ever acquire a nuclear weapon, its unchecked missile program could allow it to hold entire cities at risk in the Middle East and potentially beyond. “If the United States is ever going to restrict Iran’s missile program through diplomacy, re-entering the 2015 Iran nuclear deal is the best – and likely only – way to make it happen,” they write.

  • NUCLEAR WASTERComparing Geologic Repository Assessment Tools

    A computer modeling system is designed to answer critical safety assessment questions about future disposal options for spent nuclear fuel deep underground and the system of tunnels, containers and possible concrete-like barriers used to keep the radioactive material contained far from the surface and water sources.

  • ARGUMENT: AI & WMDsArtificial Intelligence and Chemical and Biological Weapons

    A recent article in Nature offers a disturbing look at the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the creation of chemical and biological weapons. “Anyone unfamiliar with recent innovations in the use of AI to model new drugs will be unpleasantly surprised,” Paul Rosenzweig writes. “The benefits of these innovations are clear. Unfortunately, the possibilities for malicious uses are also becoming clear.”

  • NUCLEAR SAFETYRisks of an Unfamiliar New Nuclear Age

    High-tech advances in weapons technologies and a return of ‘great power nuclear politics’, risk the world ‘sleepwalking’ into a nuclear age vastly different from the established order of the Cold War, experts warn. Stockpiles are much reduced from the peak of up to 70,000 nuclear weapons seen in the 1980s, but progress in a number of new or ‘disruptive’ technologies threatens to fundamentally change the central pillars on which nuclear order, stability and risk reduction are based.

  • RADIATION RISKSNew Treatment Removes Radioactive Barium from Nuclear Wastewater

    Exposure to ionizing radiation can be extremely dangerous for humans and animals. High acute doses lead to radiation burns and radiation sickness that can be lethal. Researchers havedeveloped a new process that offers a rapid and effective path to remove some of the most harmful of these ions – barium.

  • DIRTY BOMBSRisks of a Dirty Bomb Attack Are Increasing

    In a new factsheet, the GAO says that the risks of a dirty bomb attack are increasing and the consequences could be devastating.

  • WILDFIRESNew Wildfire Detection System Receives Funding Boost

    The high intensity of the recent fire seasons in Oregon, coupled with the increasing wildfire risk this year as approximately three-quarters of the state is now in severe drought conditions, has highlighted how critical a new project, aiming to help with the early detection and monitoring of wildfires, is — both for firefighters and the general public.

  • IRAN NUKESIran Vows to Continue Nuclear Activities

    Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has said Iran will continue nuclear development activities as talks to revive Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers remain stalled. The nuclear deal collapsed four years ago when former President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the agreement, allowing Iran to vastly expanded its nuclear work.

  • BOMB SQUADSDIY Innovations for Bomb Squads

    Bomb-squad members must effectively employ critical thinking and problem-solving skills while working in stressful, potentially life-threatening situations. DHS S&T notes that bomb technicians’ ability to expect the unexpected and adjust accordingly has created a consistent pipeline of do-it-yourself (DIY) inventions to solve everyday issues they face, and the S&T works to validate these innovations.

  • FOOD SECURITYFood Security During a Nuclear Winter

    A nuclear war would cause global blockage of the sun for several years due to injections of black carbon soot into the upper atmosphere, covering most of the planet with black clouds. This could result in less than 40 percent of normal light levels near the equator and less than 5 percent normal light levels near the poles. Research focuses on how meeting food security and nutrition in post-catastrophe conditions, which could last 15 years in some wet tropical forests.