National Nuclear Security Administration

NNSA helps Argentina keep watch for radiological and nuclear materials at G20 Summit

January 22, 2019

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Members of the Argentina team surround an NNSA employee while monitoring for radiological and nuclear threats at the G-20 Summit in December 2018.
Members of the Argentina team surround an NNSA employee while monitoring for radiological and nuclear threats.
An NNSA employee prepares the equipment during setup before the Argentina G-20 summit.
An NNSA employee prepares the equipment during setup before the Argentina G-20 summit.

As world leaders gathered for the annual G20 Summit in December, a team of experts from NNSA joined officials from Argentina to enhance the country’s existing nuclear and radiological search and detection capabilities.

“NNSA’s technical expertise on preventive radiological and nuclear-detection efforts makes its team best able to support our global partners’ ability to mitigate threats,” said Jay Tilden, NNSA’s Associate Administrator and Deputy Under Secretary for Counterterrorism and Counterproliferation.

The G20 Summit, an event featuring 19 countries and the European Union, seeks to develop global policies to address today’s most-pressing economic challenges. The forum was designated as a major public event since more than 30 world leaders, including the President and several senior U.S. officials attended.

NNSA’s Office of Nuclear Incident Policy and Cooperation, which often provides support to major public events around the globe, collaborated with Argentina and other federal partners to enhance detection in support of the summit’s security operations.

The NNSA team provided assistance with equipment setup, operational training, equipment maintenance, refresher training on data interpretation and analysis, sharing of general scientific/technical advice, and extending access to DOE’s own capabilities. The team supported planning, equipment checkout and deployment operations as well as coaching and deployment techniques for maritime radiation search training with partner agencies.

Additionally, Argentina requested technical and equipment support to augment their capabilities with a versatile radiation-detection and information acquisition unit as well as other radiation-detection equipment. The team also conducted troubleshooting and repair operations for equipment deployed in the field for the summit.

Along with the International Atomic Energy Agency, NNSA conducted several training courses in the year preceding the summit to prepare for the event.

The team prepares to set up the equipment before the G-20 Summit in Argentina.
The team prepares to set up the equipment before the G-20 Summit in Argentina.