National Nuclear Security Administration

Wide-ranging research at NNSA spans the spectrum

October 15, 2018

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Nuclear Science Week celebrates and promotes all aspects of nuclear science. At NNSA’s National Laboratories and sites, research supporting our vital nuclear security missions spans the entire electromagnetic spectrum.

How we use radio waves at NNSA
How we use radio waves at NNSA

Radio waves have been used to wirelessly monitor the environment from long ranges, visualize a cosmic tsunami, and create 3D maps with radar. Learn more about how NNSA uses radio waves.

How NNSA uses microwaves in its missions

Microwave sintering, bonding, and assembly is a novel manufacturing technology that creates composite components using minimal equipment. Learn more about how NNSA uses microwaves.

How NNSA uses infrared light in its missions

Infrared radiation helps us identify materials – from potentially hazardous chemicals on American soil, to extraterrestrial rocks millions of miles away. It also lets us monitor the globe from space. Learn more about how infrared is used in the National Security Enterprise.

How NNSA uses visible light to complete its missions

Visible Light can be seen in various aspects of National Lab research, pushing the boundaries of solar panel potential with nanoparticles and expanding laser capabilities with metamaterials. Learn more about how visible light is used at NNSA.

How NNSA uses ultraviolet light to complete its missions

Ultraviolet radiation passes through giant crystals as laser light aimed at tiny targets in the National Ignition Facility. It also helps make microchips for the semiconductor industry. Learn more about how ultraviolet light is used at NNSA.

How NNSA uses X-rays to complete its missions
How NNSA uses gamma rays to complete its missions

Gamma Rays can identify dinosaur bones, inform radiological incident response, certify the safety of our nuclear weapons, and verify nonproliferation agreements. Learn how gamma rays help NNSA accomplish its missions.