Gateway for:

Member Countries

Computer Assessment of MPC&A Systems


Developing the Computerised Procedure Intended to Dynamically Assess the Efficiency of the Nuclear Material Physical Protection, Control and Accounting (MPC&A) System and to Optimize Expenditures Associated with Hazardous Facility Protection and Security

Tech Area / Field

  • FIR-NSS/Nuclear Safety and Safeguarding/Fission Reactors
  • INF-SOF/Software/Information and Communications

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
VNIITF, Russia, Chelyabinsk reg., Snezhinsk


  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, USA, CA, Livermore

Project summary

Nuclear and radiation safety of the population is the top priority goal in the economic and other activities associated with the nuclear energy application, with the influence of ionizing radiation sources having technogenic or natural origin, or with the population irradiation for medical purposes. One of security constituents is the physical protection system for nuclear materials (NM), nuclear facilities, and NM storages (nuclear-hazardous facilities), NM control and accounting systems. At present the problem of assessing adequacy of measures taken for NM safety is pressing.

The goal of the Project is the development of the computerized model to

- dynamically assess the efficiency of NM physical protection, control and accounting systems;
- optimize expenses for ensuring safety of nuclear-hazardous facilities.

Actuality of this model development is obvious.

Studied and applied are:

· ASSESS procedure, accepted by US DoE (Analytical system and software to assess guarding and protection measures);
· branch procedures developed at RF Minatom facilities (assessment of physical protection system reliability at various facilities);
· experts’ size-up methods.

These procedures have a number of significant drawbacks impeding their practical application.

Most important drawbacks are:

· impossibility or complexity of data bases modification (changing), too simplified mathematical model, which does not take into account a number of important constituents included in the NM control and accounting system (ASSESS);
· single-component character (only physical protection system) and simplicity (Minatom procedure);
· labour-intensiveness, absence of distinct criteria in describing physical protection, control and accounting system, the experts’ knowledge dependent assessment (experts’ size-up);
· static nature of procedures, which does not take into account time dependencies associated with the actions of the personnel and adversaries.

Practical work associated with the assessment of MPC&A system efficiency as well as study of related scientific problems at our Institute resulted in the occurrence of ideas, allowing creation of the procedure free of the above-mentioned drawbacks and appropriate for practical application. Their essence was reported at the March International Conference in Obninsk (1997).

Understanding of the territory adjacent to the guarded facility as the area where one specifies some function of probability distribution in adversary detection (localization) time in any point of this area serves the basis for the guarded facility model. This function depends on the «equipment» of adversaries, on the specific MPC&A system and allows consideration of both an outsider, and an insider. So, any trajectory connecting the area boundary with the guarded facility can be associated (according to a certain rule and taking into account MPC&A system) with the probability of target reaching by an adversary. The given probability can be interpreted as MPC&A system efficiency criteria.

In development of this procedure using this model Institute experts should:

1. formulate the task aimed to assess MPC&A system efficiency, taking into account boundary conditions, applicability;

2. suggest a procedure which describes and determines significance of MPC&A system constituents;

3. suggest a procedure which describes and determines significance of different variants of outsiders and insiders for nuclear-hazardous facilities;

4. formulate and determine criteria of information protection in data processing and transfer systems;

5. develop criteria to assess reliability of the personnel, guarding and response forces;

6. develop criteria of MPC&A system efficiency "efficiency–cost";

7. formulate requirements to data bases (for insiders, outsiders, guarding technical means (detection means) and responding forces, control and accounting systems, personnel (experts, attendants, guards, etc.);

8. construct mathematical models formalized on the basis of constituents significance:

· NM physical protection system model;
· guarding (detection) technical means system model;
· NM control and accounting system model;
· information protection system model;
· outsider and insider models;
· responding system model;

9. develop the problem solution algorithm with the regard for the procedure applicability range;

10. investigate mathematical models of the problem solutions;

11. develop computer program.

As a result of this work implementation experts involved in MPC&A system efficiency assessment will acquire a tool allowing (using analytical methods based on the computer program) rather quick investigation of MPC&A system being designed or the one to be modernized. After this tool certification it can be recommended for application at MinAtom and DOE facilities.

RFNC-VNIITF can act as the organizer, coordinator and main executor which will develop the procedure aimed to assess efficiency of MPC&A system and of related computer programs.

For 40 years Institute experts have been involved in special surety and reliability of systems developed. Their work results have scientific recognition and are validated by numerous tests. This makes it hope for the creation of a reliable tool to assess physical protection system efficiency of nuclear-hazardous facilities.

In the course of this project implementation one expects development of scientific applied directions and obtaining of data necessary for industrial mastering of a number of principally new elements of systems for assessing efficiency of security both of nuclear-hazardous facilities, and of other facilities requiring this assessment.

Work under the Project totally meets ISTC goals, since highly-qualified experts of the Institute involved in nuclear weapon surety issues will participate in the Project. Supposedly, this work will be fulfilled with the ISTC support. Scope of work, terms and estimated costs will be specified.

Scientific investigations in the framework of the Project will be based on the well-developed theory of minimization of functionals of many variables, the probability theory, theory of random processes. The developed algorithms will use mathematical simulation methods. Modern advanced high programming languages and standard libraries of parallel programming means will be used for developing programs. Modern systems of data bases will be used to store and process information. The proposed approach has scientific significance as the experience in simulating and resolving security problems and allows further application of other approaches to the MPC&A system efficiency assessment.


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

Promotional Material

Значимы проект

See ISTC's new Promotional video view