Scientists learn nuclear forensics

Published On: Nov 08 2013 11:21:38 AM PST

A siren blared and lights flashed as an SUV drove through a radiation monitoring station at the HAMMER training center at Hanford.

It was the start of a fictitious case that would be solved by 26 visitors from nations around the globe who are spending two weeks in the Tri-Cities to learn more about the emerging field of nuclear forensics.

They'll go home to countries from Vietnam to Mexico with information that can help them identify confiscated nuclear materials and possibly trace them to their origins, helping prevent nuclear proliferation and acts of nuclear terrorism.

The need for the training, which is being offered for the second time at HAMMER by the National Nuclear Security Administration, is more than theoretical.