Title: Methods for the Detection of Undeclared Plutonium Production Facilities
Authors: VACCARO Stefano
Citation: Esarda Bulletin vol. 37 p. 70-74
Publisher: European Commission - Esarda
Publication Year: 2007
JRC N°: JRC45214
ISSN: 0392-3029
URI: http://esarda2.jrc.it/bulletin/index.html
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Among the safeguarding practices aimed at the detection of undeclared nuclear activities, the importance of environmental sampling and nuclear forensics has grown in the last decades. In fact, the production of raw materials for nuclear weapons can be pursued either by processes to produce very highly enriched (weapon-grade) Uranium or by chemical separation of plutonium from reactor¿s spent fuel, in a hidden branching of an officially nonmilitary nuclear fuel cycle. Both these processes will result in the release to the environment of some characteristic materials, which can be found in the liquid and gaseous effluents or concentrated in sediments, soils, vegetation, livestock and biota. In this paper, some environmental sampling based techniques aimed at supplying evidence of plutonium production facilities are discussed, with particular attention to wide area atmospheric monitoring of Kr-85 and on environmental signatures in the environs just around a reprocessing plant.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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