Policy and Technical Issues Facing a Fissile Material (Cutoff) Treaty

Authored by: Zia Mian , Frank N. von Hippel

Routledge Handbook of Nuclear Proliferation and Policy

Print publication date:  May  2015
Online publication date:  May  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415870399
eBook ISBN: 9780203709528
Adobe ISBN: 9781136012488

10.4324/9780203709528.ch14

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Abstract

The largest obstacle to creating nuclear weapons, starting with the ones that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki, has been to make sufficient quantities of fissile materials – highly enriched uranium (HEU) and plutonium – to sustain an explosive fission chain reaction. 1 Recognition of this fact has, for more than fifty years, underpinned both the support for and the opposition to adoption of an international treaty banning at a minimum the production of more fissile materials for nuclear weapons, commonly referred to as a fissile material cutoff treaty (FMCT).

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