Welcome to the Nuclear Security Grand Challenge
The first phase of our competition has launched and comments on the problem statement are being gathered and discussed in an open forum among contributors.
We invite additional comments by email to email@example.com. In addition to comments on the challenge, nominations for panel members and relevant technical resources are also welcomed.
SPring 2016 Nuclear Security Grand Challenge Event
at Stanford University
Photo credits: Steve Fyffe / Stanford CISAC
On Thursday April 7th, Technology for Global Security (T4GS) was pleased to announce the intent to conduct a one-year Nuclear Security Grand Challenge. The competition is intended to attract the most sophisticated problem-solvers to design the world's best system for countries to confidentially verify that their nuclear weapons and materials are secure at all times. T4GS’ goal is to raise significant prize money for this game-changing competition, with winning entries selected by an all-star judging panel of international experts from the defense, science, technology, policy, and investment communities.
This planning event was co-hosted with the State Department and Stanford University's, “The Hunt for Weapons of Mass Destruction: Leveraging New Technology”, a day-long interactive workshop at Stanford University with the goal of developing innovative tools to combat the spread of weapons of mass destruction. Attending the event were former Secretary of Defense Dr. Bill Perry, Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller, Dr. Marty Hellman, and Dr. Bethany Goldblum. The event was held on the heels of President Obama's 4th Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) in Washington, D.C., which attracted numerous heads of state to address the catastrophic danger of nuclear terrorism.
Check out our short video, created by the animator of Harry Potter, which attempts to encapsulate the challenge we all face:
Many people talk about making the world a safer place - in Washington DC, Silicon Valley, and around the world. You’re the ones who can actually help make that happen. Nuclear weapons, especially in the hands of terrorists, pose one of the most dangerous threats to the world today. Through a grass-roots, international effort, we will finally be able to ensure those weapons are secure. Join us, watch our video below describing the problem, and figure out how you can play a role. We can only do this together. Get involved, spread the word, and help Technology for Global Security make the world a safer place for us all.
As our video states, the actual challenge will be for teams to answer the following problem statement (which we continue to develop with your input and feedback):
“WHAT IS THE BEST SYSTEM DESIGN FOR COUNTRIES, COMPANIES, AND OTHER ORGANIZATIONS TO CONFIDENTIALLY AND SECURELY VERIFY IN REAL-TIME THAT 100% OF THEIR NUCLEAR WEAPONS AND WEAPONS-USABLE FISSILE MATERIAL REMAIN IN THEIR CONTROL AND TO AID THE RECOVERY OF ANY LOSS IF IT OCCURS?"
This will be an international competition, modeled along the lines of the NIST competition that resulted in the AES encryption standard used today, as well as the DARPA Grand Challenge focused on driverless cars, won by a team from Stanford University.
Submissions will be encouraged from anyone, anywhere, in English. Technical aspects of the challenge to consider but are not limited to radiation detection, secure communications, access control, data security frameworks, global applicability, and long-term viability.
Teams will make their submissions public (or not) until the date of submission, at which time they will become public for open peer-review. T4GS will facilitate a series of conferences and workshops over the course of the year-long competition to pave the way for outstanding submissions.
The winning entries will be selected by an all-star judging panel of 5-10 international experts. Additional judges will be chosen from the international defense, science, policy, and technology communities. The judging panel will be assisted by a select group of Strategic Advisors as well as an expanded network of Technical Advisors.