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Nuclear Safeguards Education Portal
Threats to Nuclear Security

Course Difficulty: Easy Course, no prior knowledge required.

Course Category: Nuclear Security

Screenshot from this course.
Screenshot from this course.

Administrative Details

Module Description: In this course, students will be introduced to threats encountered when securing nuclear material, including potential adversary types, intentions, capabilities, and targets of interest.

Prerequisites: Students taking this course should have completed the NSEP Basic Nuclear and Atomic Physics course. It is also recommended that students from a non-technical background view this section on health physics for a quick description of radiation's effect on the body.

Learning Objectives: After completing this course, students should be able to describe the potential adversary groups and their interest in nuclear or radiological materials, determine which adversaries are intent and capable of committing nuclear terrorism, describe nefarious uses of radiological materials, and construct a threat definition of a potential adversary.

Outline: This module consists of the following sections:

  1. Introduction
  2. Potential Adversary Groups
  3. Nuclear Terrorism
  4. Terrorist Intentions
  5. Terrorist Capabilities
  6. Other Malicious Uses of Radiological Materials
  7. Theft and Sale of Radiological Materials
  8. Threat-Informed Security

Each section contains reading material, videos, and reference materials. The reading material includes a brief discussion of the subject matter, and the videos explore the subject in further detail. The student should complete the reading material and then watch the videos if they wish to have additional information and a more in-depth explanation of the subject matter

A special thanks to Robert Bastian for his help in producing this module.

See a list of terminology for this module.

See general course instructions.

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