How to Optimally Interdict a Belligerent Project to Develop a Nuclear Weapon
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA
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Despite decades of energetic international control efforts, nuclear weapons technology continues to spread worldwide. To understand how these complex weapons programs can be developed, we assume the role of a nation seeking to build a first fission weapon, and the ability to continue to build more We introduce a large-scale project management model that includes alternate development paths to achieve certain key technical milestones We show how such a project can be optimally accelerated by expediting critical tasks, Next, we present a new analysis tool to detect vulnerabilities in such a development program we seek optimal actions to impede, set back andor otherwise frustrate completion of a first weapon, even if the proliferation knows what we are doing to delay things, This two-sided project evaluation tool is implemented with a combination of off-the-shelf project management software, optimization software and custom code, An illustrative case study of a first fission weapon program shows how this new analysis tool can be used, Our methods also apply to chemical, biological andor radiological dispersion weapons, as well as to more conventional strategic industrial and commercial activities.
- Nuclear Weapons