If a terrorist group were to strike the United States with a nuclear weapon or a dirty bomb, one of the first things authorities would have to do is forensic work to find out where the material used in the weapon came from and how the device was put together. A new report from the National Research Council says that the U.S. government is not adequately prepared to do this job. The report urges the government to provide more funds for research and development in nuclear forensics and asks national labs to hire more scientists and technicians trained in doing the work. It also asks the Department of Homeland Security to conduct regular mock exercises to better plan the forensic steps in the event of a nuclear attack.
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