AUTHORBukharin, Oleg / Doyle, James
TITLEVerification of the Shutdown or Converted Status of Excess Warhead Production Capacity: Technology Options and Policy Issues
PERIODICAL TITLEScience and Global Security
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This article discusses a series of possible approaches to monitoring nuclear warhead assembly/disassembly facilities in Russia and other nuclear countries and considers the possible obstacles to implementing such oversight. Given the recent trend of diminishing nuclear warhead stockpiles in the U.S. and Russia, the article argues that a “transparency regime” could become an important aspect of future arms control and nonproliferation initiatives since it provides a method of verifying the shutdown or conversion of former nuclear facilities. The article begins by defining what qualifies as a warhead assembly/disassembly facility and how to define its shutdown or conversion. Six major monitoring options that could be used in combination with each other are detailed: infrastructure demolition, portal perimeter continuous monitoring, environmental monitoring, overhead surveillance, on-site inspections, and remote monitoring. The article also considers additional monitoring techniques that would be needed for nuclear warhead facilities that are continuing significant industrial and/or national security activities. A table that identifies all known nuclear warhead assembly/disassembly facilities worldwide (as of 2002) is included as well as endnotes and references.

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