Enhancing nuclear security at Ukrainian border stations to prevent illicit trafficking
In the context of the possible threat of illicit trafficking of radioactive or nuclear material it is of great importance to stop the transport of such material across international borders in order to prevent terrorist groups from facilitating nuclear explosive devices or radiological bombs containing this kind of material. The TACIS (Technical Assistance to the Commonwealth of Independent States) program of the European Commission comprises several projects concerning the enhancement of borders of former Soviet Union states to the European Union (EU) with respect to nuclear security. One of these projects refers to a common project of the European Commission and the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine concerning Ukrainian border stations. The Fraunhofer INT attends to this project as consortium leader. Other projects in that respect refer e.g. to Republic of Belarus and Republic of Armenia. Several Ukrainian border stations to EU states were examined concerning the necessities and options for installing radiation detection equipment for the purpose of monitoring of vehicles and pedestrians crossing the Ukrainian border. For that reason Fraunhofer INT scientists visited some of the Ukrainian border stations. To assure an appropriate selection of equipment several aspects were taken into consideration, e.g. general layout of the station, traffic flow, and detection systems which had already been installed at or near the station. Based on these considerations both the technological needs for the detection of radioactive and nuclear material including a priority list and the associated technical specifications were provided to the contracting entity by the Fraunhofer INT. The next step, which is currently under way, is an invitation to tender addressed to manufacturers of relevant equipment concerning appropriate measuring systems with requirements specifications based upon the Fraunhofer INT's expertise. After the acquisition and installation of the measuring devices at the border stations in question, demonstration exercises of the new detection systems will follow, also with participation of the Fraunhofer INT. Furthermore Fraunhofer INT will be involved in supporting the training of the Ukrainian experts. This project serves as a further step towards a higher degree of security in the nuclear sector at EU borders. The course and the preliminary results of the project will be presented.