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National Security


Our researchers within National Security at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) focus on delivering high-impact, science-based, practical solutions to our clients to prevent and counter acts of terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Our world-leading capabilities cross-cut market needs and one of our major strengths is our ability to integrate our research and projects across PNNL and take them to market. We are committed to providing excellent service to our clients to help make our world safe and more secure.

News Highlights

Carlos Fraga

Fraga Named Luminary Honoree

Carlos Fraga, NSD, will be recognized as a 2013 Luminary Honoree at the Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Corporation's 25th Anniversary Conference in October. Luminaries represent Hispanic professionals for their contributions to the Hispanic technical community. Seventeen individuals will receive this award, representing a broad range of science, technology, engineering, and math professional expertise.

Fraga works with the Trace Organic Analysis team, which develops materials for enhanced separation and detection, advances environmental chemical forensic capabilities, and develops and tests field portable instrumentation for trace chemical and explosive detection.

David Asner

Building high-energy physics at PNNL

NSD's David Asner recently talked with Physics Today about his experiences in the high-energy physics field and his journey to PNNL. Recruited by PNNL to help launch the Lab's high-energy physics effort in 2010, Asner left his tenured position at Carlton University and continues to be a driving force in high-energy physics research.

"High-energy physics includes some of the most exciting science of the 21st century, and the technical advances needed to move the science forward are well aligned with PNNL's capabilities—and we want to do exciting science," said Asner. Read the full interview on Physics Today's website.

Fema Logo

New Framework for Disaster Recovery

Ann Lesperance, Jessica Sandusky, and Steve Stein, all NSD, developed a regional recovery framework for major metropolitan areas, the first of its kind. The framework covers natural threats and includes an approach to complications associated with long term recovery following biological, chemical, or radiological (CBR) incidents.

As a result of this innovative new framework, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has included both documents, Denver UASI All-Hazards Regional Recovery Framework and Urban Area Recovery Planning with CBR, on its website as examples for other U.S. regions to develop their own frameworks.

Increasing Resilience for International CBRNE Events

Meeting attendees

Ann Lesperance, NSD, recently served on a steering committee for the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to develop a workshop for an all-of-government approach to international Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and high- yield Explosives (CBRNE) events. Lesperance was also asked to moderate one of two panels on capabilities and capacities to enhance government response, with senior level representatives from both government and nongovernment organizations. Additionally, Lesperance participated in an invite-only meeting with FBI, DOS, CDC, DTRA, NIST, and NAS to discuss this topic.

National Labs Bringing a Peaceful Nuclear Future

Star Treaty

Last month, President Obama reiterated his call to action for the world to move away from nuclear weapons and strive toward a peaceful nuclear future. In response, Secretary of Energy Dr. Ernest Moniz toured the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Organization (CTBTO) in Vienna, an organization responsible for monitoring international underground testing of nuclear explosions.

PNNL is one of 16 CTBTO radionuclide labs and certifies the makeup of materials detected by CTBTO sensors. Dr. Moniz stated "This [CTBTO] state-of-the-art facility represents the global cooperation necessary to succeed at this important mission, and the Department of Energy plays an integral role in [Obama's goal] through our National Laboratories."

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National Security Directorate

What's New

Tony Peurrung
NSD Director, Dr. Tony Peurrung oversees the delivery of impactful science and technology for PNNL's National Security clients.

Tony's Bio

Learn how PNNL Technology Detects Fukushima Radiation


Learn more about PNNL's leadership in signature discovery and threat detection...


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