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        • NukesCold War Nuclear Tests Changed U.K. Rainfall

          Nuclear bomb tests during the Cold War may have changed rainfall patterns thousands of miles from the detonation sites, new research has revealed. Scientists have researched how the electric charge released by radiation from the test detonations, carried out predominantly by the U.S. and Soviet Union in the 1950s and 1960s, affected rainclouds at the time.

        • Iran’s nukesIran’s Nuclear “Breakout” Time Reduced to 3-4 Months

          In May 2018, when President Trump announced that the United States was withdrawing from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, Iran “breakout” time was estimated to be 12-16 months. Breakout is defined as the time Iran would need to produce 25 kilograms of weapon-grade uranium (WGU), enough for a nuclear weapon. A new report says that Iran’s breakout time now is 3.1 to 4.6 months.

        • Nuclear safetyMaintaining Nuclear Safety and Security During the COVID-19 Crisis

          By William Tobey, Simon Saradzhyan, and Nickolas Roth

          Every major industry on earth is struggling to adapt in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes nuclear facilities and nuclear-powered vessels, which count among the critical infrastructure of dozens of nations now struggling with the pandemic, representing more than half the world’s population. Meanwhile, ISIS has already announced its intent to exploit the pandemic while a number of other violent extremist organizations are also taking pains to exploit the crisis. Without implementing extraordinary measures to maintain safety and security, nuclear installations risk compounding the crisis with a large-scale radiation release.

        • China syndromeU.S. Says China Conducted Zero-Yield Nuclear Tests

          The United States says that China may have secretly conducted low-level underground nuclear tests, even though the country has signed a treaty banning such tests. Zero yield tests are nuclear test in which there is no explosive chain reaction of the type ignited by the detonation of a nuclear warhead.

        • Nuclear detectionHow Lasers Can Help with Nuclear Nonproliferation Monitoring

          Scientists developed a new method showing that measuring the light produced in plasmas made from a laser can be used to understand uranium oxidation in nuclear fireballs. This capability gives never-before-seen insight into uranium gas-phase oxidation during nuclear explosions. These insights further progress toward a reliable, non-contact method for remote detection of uranium elements and isotopes, with implications for nonproliferation safeguards, explosion monitoring and treaty verification.

        • Nuclear warEven a Limited India-Pakistan Nuclear War Would Bring Global Famine, Says Study

          By Kevin Krajick

          The concept of nuclear winter—a years-long planetary freeze brought on by airborne soot generated by nuclear bombs—has been around for decades. But such speculations have been based largely on back-of-the-envelope calculations involving a total war between Russia and the United States. Now, a new multinational study incorporating the latest models of global climate, crop production and trade examines the possible effects of a less gargantuan but perhaps more likely exchange between two longtime nuclear-armed enemies: India and Pakistan.

        • Iran’s nukesIran Nuclear Accord Parties Meet to Try to Salvage Deal

          The remaining members of the floundering Iran nuclear deal are set to meet in Vienna Wednesday for the first time since Germany, France, and Britain initiated dispute procedures that could reimpose U.N. sanctions on Tehran. The talks come as the signatories try to rescue the landmark 2015 accord, which has been faltering since U.S. President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from it in 2018 and enforced crippling sanctions on Iran.

        • Iran’s nukesEuropean Unity on Iran Nuclear Deal May Be Cracking

          There are signs that cracks are beginning to appear in European unity over its backing of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, or JCPOA, as allies come under growing pressure from the United States to abandon the agreement in the wake of Tehran’s downing of a passenger jet January 8. Iran announced this month it would ignore all restrictions on its nuclear enrichment activities, but insisted it was permitted to do so under the 2015 deal, because the U.S. was the first signatory to break the agreement.

        • Iran’s nukesIsrael Warns Iran is Closer to Nuclear Bomb

          Israeli military analysts say that by the end of 2020 Iran will have enough enriched uranium for one nuclear bomb. The assessment comes after recent tensions between the U.S. and Iran brought them to the brink of war. The United States pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal in 2018, and Israeli intelligence officials speculated that Iran would resume its efforts to acquire a nuclear bomb.

        • ArgumentHow Demise of Iranian Nuclear Deal Rekindles Israel’s Dilemma

          For Israel, it may be a case of “careful what you wish for.” Whatever its flaws, the Iran nuclear deal gave Israel a breather of sorts. Now its leaders face a grimly familiar predicament, and a ticking clock.

        • Iran’s nukesFrance: Iran Could Have Nuclear Weapon within One to Two Years

          French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has warned that Iran could have nuclear weapons in one or two years if Tehran continues to violate a landmark nuclear accord with world powers. Before the nuclear deal between Iran and the leading world powers was signed in October 2015, Iran’s “dash-to-the-bomb” break-out time was estimated to be between two and five months. The various clauses of the nuclear deal had increased Iran’s break-out time to 12-18 months – and the deal would have kept Iran’s nuclear program in that state until 2030. Since the U.S, withdrew from deal on 8 May 2018, Iran has systematically, if carefully and slowly, breached more and more of the restrictions imposed on its nuclear program in 2015.

        • Soleimani killingIran's Attacks on U.S. Assets Could Encourage N. Korea's Nuclear Ambitions: Experts

          Iran’s attacks on Iraqi bases housing U.S. troops as Tehran announced it will no longer comply with restrictions on uranium enrichment may encourage North Korea to perfect its nuclear and missile technologies, experts said.

        • Iran’s nukesIran Abandons 2015 Nuclear Deal

          Iran says it is no longer limiting the number of centrifuges used to enrich uranium— a virtual abandonment of the 2015 nuclear deal. But the Sunday statement did not make any explicit threats that Iran is seeking a nuclear weapon — something Iran has always denied it wants to do. Its statement said Iran will still cooperate with the International Atomic Agency. President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out in 2018.

        • 2019: Looking back: Iran9. Iran’s Growing Middle East Sway

          The year which ends today saw growing tensions between Iran and the United States. The United States withdrew from the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran, but the administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign, while causing some economic difficulties inside Iran, has failed to dissuade Iran from pursuing its two related strategic goals: Achieve regional hegemony in the Middle East, and shorten the nuclear weapons break-out time, that is, the time it would take Iran to build a functioning nuclear weapon once a decision to do so has been made.

        • 2019: Looking back: North Korea10. North Korea: The U.S. Top Security Threat

          Developments on the Korean peninsula show that the Trump administration’s policy toward North Korea has been a failure, and that the risk North Korea poses to the United States, and to U.S. allies in the region, has only increased. The administration has portrayed its North Korea policy as its signature initiative, but now bills North Korea as the U.S. top security threat.

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