This group seeks to support the international safeguards capability of the U.S. government through training and the analysis, formulation and development of safeguards policy and technical analyses.
A major objective is to support the safeguards activities of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The IAEA faces many challenges such as essentially flat budgets, increasing work load as more nuclear facilities come on-line, greater reliance on safeguards information and advanced technologies, and increased effort to detect undeclared nuclear activities and procurement networks. All of these challenges will require new and innovative safeguard’s approaches and policy formulations in order for the IAEA to successfully meet its safeguards verification mandate.
In addition to supporting IAEA safeguards, the group supports other safeguards and arms control initiatives, such as analytical and policy support for the Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty and leadership and implementation of the Technical Survey Team for review and assessment of the DOE International Nuclear Security Program. Specific activities include:
- Support for the NNSA Next Generation Safeguards Initiative through policy development and systems studies, development of training courses, and public education and outreach to improve the resources available to the IAEA.
- Annual delivery of a graduate level summer course entitled “Nuclear Nonproliferation, Safeguards and Security in the 21st Century.” The course has been oversubscribed each year it has been offered and has generated enthusiasm from the field.
- Preparation and distribution of a comprehensive textbook about the IAEA safeguards system, the challenges it confronts, and its role in the nuclear nonproliferation regime: Deterring Nuclear Proliferation: The Importance of IAEA Safeguards.
- Undergraduate and graduate internships for nuclear engineering, international nuclear safeguards technology and policy, and nuclear nonproliferation students in the Nonproliferation and National Security Department.
- The design of a pilot training program on intercultural preparedness for professionals working in nuclear safeguards and nonproliferation.
- Engagement with the other countries that are newcomers to the community of power users to assist them in understanding and fulfilling their commitments under the treaty on the Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and the Additional Protocol.
- International co-chair of the Generation IV Proliferation Resistance and Physical Protection Working Group (PRPPWG).
- Characterization of proliferation attributes of molten salt reactor (MSR) designs and associated fuel cycles, and implement Facility Safeguards Assessment (FSA) methodology in their evaluation.
- Development of human capital for the U.S. International Safeguards Community.