Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Arun_S
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Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Arun_S » 08 Sep 2009 22:08

This thread is for discussing breaking news and discussion related to technical aspects of POK-II ( I.e. What they intended to achieve in May 1998 versus what was achieved).
URL for those news report can be posted on this thread.

The forthcoming talk at IDSA by Dr. S.K. Sikka should be discussed there.
Measuring Nuclear Test Yield: Understanding Pokhran II
Speaker: Dr. S.K. Sikka, Scientific Secretary, Office of the Principal Scientific Advisor to Government of India
Date & Time: 14th September 2009 at 1100 hrs
Venue: IDSA, Main Auditorium
[BY INVITATION ONLY]


I request posters to please post in normal language. (For those who must, limiting it to only one or two words of commonly used pingreji will be ok)

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Arun_S » 08 Sep 2009 22:23

Very well presented news article from Frontline (Volume 26 - Issue 19 :: Sep. 12-25, 2009)
Pokhran row

R. RAMACHANDRAN

The controversy over the yields of the Pokhran-II nuclear tests still rages, with specialists continuing to question the DAE’s conclusions.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby ramana » 08 Sep 2009 22:41

Its a very good summary article.
The technical controversy is on S-I not on POKII.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby ramana » 08 Sep 2009 22:44

IDSA's K. Subramanyam Award

I think Arun_S should be nominated for this award for his IDR papers.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby sanjaykumar » 09 Sep 2009 03:13

A great news report worth as much as 60 pages of this thread.

Soon after the Indian announcements of the test yields, Terry Wallace in Seismological Research Letters (SRL) and Brian Barker and associates in Science questioned the Indian yields. In fact, these two papers continue to be cited to challenge the Indian figures. But in their analysis, Sikka and colleagues had also rebutted their conclusions. First, Wallace and Barker used the average USGS and the IDC values of m(B) respectively to calculate the yields, which, according to Sikka, were inaccurate without including interference effects.


In fact this is a good example of bad science. Whether they arrived at the right conclusion is immaterial.

Second point, let us examine any Anglo-American test with the same scrutiny-until that is feasible, all is maya.

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Undetectable Nuclear Testing

Postby Rien » 09 Sep 2009 06:16

All of India's nuclear tests have been controversial as to stated yield. Pokhran I was initially claimed as 15 kt, and then subsequently revised by P.K Iyengar(2nd in charge of the nuclear test) down to 10 kt.

Thus, the same designer as the previous one, has been verifiably found guilty of exaggerating yield claims. That same designer has claimed, with backup from BARC, that Pokhran 2 had a yield of 45 kt. Once again, we had dissension from the DRDO review team, who stated quite clearly their seismic results did not agree. Not one independent third party has accepted the yield estimates made by the BARC team, whether within or outside of India. All yield estimates that were supportive were exclusively made by BARC personnel and no other institution has ever peer reviewed the raw data. BARC, and BARC alone has made all the claims of yield.

General Malik, P.K Iyengar(former AEC chairman), and K. Santhanam(Test Director of the 1998 tests) are all insiders with access to classified information on the tests. They are backed up by all the outside seismologists who have unambiguously stated that the Indian test yields are not as claimed. All in all, the indian thermonuclear weapons are worthless. Not one is provably deployed.

There is, however, a silver lining to this bad news. It is possible to conduct undetectable nuclear tests. K. Santhanam has continually criticized the TN test, but not the yields of any of the other tests. No Indian observer has ever questioned the validity of any of the conventional tests.

None of the other tests were detected by the CTBT network! The network that is allegedly "capable of detecting a 1 kt explosion". Indeed, looking at all the published estimates of yield put forth by the CTBT monitoring network, it varies by as much as 2000% for the Chinese test series. The North Korean test had an error margin of over 4000%. If the Pakistanis did in fact conduct 6 tests, then only 2 were detected.

There is historical proven inaccuracy in making yield estimates of USSR nuclear tests. All in all, the CTBT network is highly questionable in terms of making yield estimates, and even more so in detecting >10 kt explosions. It has, in fact, clearly underestimated the known Pokhran 1 yield.

Seismic magnitude and yield for the Indian nuclear test of 11 May 1998 A.Douglas, N.D Selby and D.Bowers

In trying to model the seismograms at long range, there are too many unknowns to obtain useful results. The epicentres of the two largest of the three been measured on signals from the test: all the observations are from signals from earthquakes, that were explosions that made up 980511 lie on a roughly E–W mistakenly attributed to the test.


The CTBT network cannot even discrimate between earthquakes and nuclear tests. The answer is obvious. It is possible to conduct a new series of tests, without being detected. It is possible to have a strong nuclear arsenal and evade sanctions. No compromises on security need to be made at all. More tests to produce a reliable arsenal are needed, and they cannot be detected by international observers. In short, there is a considerable amount of good news hidden in the apparent bad news. All that is needed is the political agreement to test covertly.

So a much longer new tests series is needed, to explore all the possibilities of fissile materials, not just uranium 235,238, and Pu 239,240. A serious investigation of Uranium 233, and Neptunium, and all the other fissile isotopes. There is no reason to assume that there are not still many significant discoveries to be made exploring the comparatively unknown isotopes.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby ss_roy » 09 Sep 2009 06:56

I think most of us agree that regardless of the yield of P-II tests, we require a new round to validate SLBM warheads.

It really boils down to this: If we pack 4-6 nukes in the SLBM version of Agni-3, will they work as designed? and be competitive with the SLBM payloads of other countries. Building a nuclear submarine force to throw one 20-40 kt warhead per SLBM just does not cut it.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby ramana » 09 Sep 2009 07:12

Thats a good issue. The operating loads are quite different from land launch but can be proofed without underground tests. What needs testing is the designed yield of the weapon.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby csharma » 09 Sep 2009 07:26

K Subrahmanyam in his earlier article has said the same thing about people miscalcluating the POKII yield because of they miscalculated the 1974 yield.

http://www.tribuneindia.com/2009/20090903/edit.htm#6

THE present controversy over the yield of Pokhran-2 nuclear tests is not the first such development in this country of argumentative Indians. Pokhran-1 also had its share of controversy on its explosive yield. Since it was not claimed to be a weapon test at that time and there was no talk of nuclear deterrence, that controversy was less fierce than the present one. Then, too, there were people who termed it a dud.
I have heard personally Prime Minister Morarji Desai saying that there was no nuclear test and the scientists set off an explosion of a large quantity of buried conventional explosives. Others contested the claimed yield of 12 kilotons and asserted that it was only 8 kilotons. The result of the Pokhran-1 controversy survives till today and contributes to the present one. Many foreign scientists concede that they arrive at a lower yield of the Pokhran-2 test by extrapolating the lower yield of Pokhran-1 as advanced by some Indian scientists.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby shiv » 09 Sep 2009 08:20

csharma wrote:K Subrahmanyam in his earlier article has said the same thing about people miscalcluating the POKII yield because of they miscalculated the 1974 yield.

http://www.tribuneindia.com/2009/20090903/edit.htm#6



Absolutely nothing new in the idea that yield of 1998 can be based on 1974 yield.

I had said that in the first post when i started the following thread in 2002:

Seismology for dummies- guesstimating nuclear yields

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby ramana » 09 Sep 2009 08:45

This was posted earlier bu lost in the flurry of posts:

Cratering and spall simulation of Pokhran-1
event with three-dimensional transient finite
element analysis

http://www.ias.ac.in/currsci/apr102005/1133.pdf

This will be called POK-I 3-D simulation.


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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby csharma » 09 Sep 2009 08:57

shiv wrote:
csharma wrote:K Subrahmanyam in his earlier article has said the same thing about people miscalcluating the POKII yield because of they miscalculated the 1974 yield.

http://www.tribuneindia.com/2009/20090903/edit.htm#6



Absolutely nothing new in the idea that yield of 1998 can be based on 1974 yield.

I had said that in the first post when i started the following thread in 2002:

Seismology for dummies- guesstimating nuclear yields


Shiv, that is a great post and I think that pretty much summarises where the discussion stands right now in 2009 based on open source information.

Some interesting tidbits from the Frontline article.

According to Sikka, radiochemical analysis of Pokhran-I had been done and it gave a value of 12 kt. Based on post-shot data such as cavity radius, surface velocity and the extent of rock fracturing, an analysis in 1985 has yielded a value of 12-13 kt. This has been accepted by some Western analysts on the basis of international m(S) measurements (Graph 3). But despite this, people like Wallace continue to use a lower figure for Pokhran-I. Interestingly, however, Wallace himself was a co-author of a report of the IRIS Consortium to the U.S. Senate in 1994 that gives a value of 10-15 kt, according to Sikka.


The other important tidbit is the following:

Now, since both Santhanam and Iyengar were privy neither to the design of the weapon nor to the details of the radiochemical analysis and other measurements, their arguments are quite speculative. National Security Adviser M.K. Narayanan, in fact, said in a recent interview (The Hindu, August 30): “First and foremost, DRDO has nothing to do with [this aspect of the] tests…. The measurements are not done by DRDO.” And, in any case, unlike Santhanam now and many Western analysts before him, Iyengar has not questioned the yield itself.
Last edited by csharma on 09 Sep 2009 10:25, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby shiv » 09 Sep 2009 09:19

The radiochemical estimation published by Sikka et al has been criticised as being inappropriate, if not wrong. The link to this criticism was posted by me in the old thread. But on the other hand it is clear that India is not going to make the real results public - but will only reveal some peripheral related results that they don't mind releasing for public scrutiny.

I may be mistaken here but cavity radius and number of holes drilled has no real bearing on accurate radiochemical analysis - but my guesswork is based on a description by Chidambaram when he said that at the time of a nuclear blast a cavity forms with molten rock on its inner surface. As that rock cools the molten rock drips inside as pebbles of glass that entomb the radioactive products (and un burnt remnants) of the explosion. Even after the cavity collapses it is filled with marbles that contain the products of fission/fusion and high energy neutrons. Those marbles have to be sampled.

I am no expert though. Google uncle has not revealed much information on this subject and I am still searching.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby vera_k » 09 Sep 2009 09:25

BTW, Talbott in Engaging India says that S1 was buried in a shaft approximately 300 metres deep.
Last edited by vera_k on 09 Sep 2009 09:37, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby shiv » 09 Sep 2009 09:30

vera_k wrote:BTW, Talbott in Engaging India says that S1 was buried in a shaft exceeding 300 metres.



But it still produced a retarc when it exploded? (as per available videos)

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Arun_S » 09 Sep 2009 09:46

BARC had befuddled POK-1 with yield claims ranging from 12 kt to 8 kt (again a ratio of 66%). So very convenient for Shakti-1 too: 45 kt versus 30 kt (~66%) real yield of S1.

Also note that On 11 May 1998 BARC reported 45 kt +/- 3kT yield (using close in sensors) Notice the +/- tolerance of 7% only. More accurate yield estimate come from Radio-chem analysis. for which one had to wait for few months.

Finally when the radio-chem report comes; BARC does an excellent job of boring only 2 holes (any surprise?) and come up with a superior yield tolerance of +/- 20% on a superior estimate of 50 kt, +/- 10 kt.

One must commend R.Chidambaram, Anil Kakodkar and Sikka ji for such fantastic improvement in accuracy of yield estimation using radio-chem. Instead of better accuracy from +/- 7% they increase it 3 times to +/-20%. :twisted:

One can only speculate of they run out of money or drill bits in boring more holes to get a more accurate estimate of the radius of the cavity? That radius estimate alone gives error of +/- 33 %. And IIRC PKI or Santhanam also mentioned that BARC estimates had 80% error range (i.e. +/- 40% tolerance). Some other sources say it was +/- 50%.

Go figure the degree of truth in the statement "Ashwathaama Maara Gaya".

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby amdavadi » 09 Sep 2009 10:07

narova kunjaro va

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby shiv » 09 Sep 2009 10:12

Sarcasm and contempt aside there is no new data. Only character assassination can give more weight to the same old data.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Arun_S » 09 Sep 2009 10:15



As I reviewed the paper I found few serious problems:

1) Cavity radius estimation
In order to obtain the total number of fissions, it is necessary to devise a method of integration. The radius of the crush zone was obtained from the drilling data and was found to be about 60 m. This gave an estimate of the cavity radius (Rc) as 40 ± 4 m. The early samples from the recent drilling operations at a position 32 m away from the earlier position showed nearly same level of radioactivity indicating that the Rc is positively more than 32m. The total number of fissions (TF) was obtained by integrating the fitted curve (Figure 4) over the entire active zone . This integration was carried out using the following equation,

    Cavity radius estimate is the most critical geometric feature required for yield estimate. The authors mention that just two holes were used to estimate the radius, that too with the assertion that "indicating that the Rc is positively more than 32m." .This must be a joke in science. For statistical validity a population of 2 samples (that presumes one of them is dead center if the cavity) set makes the whole statistical analysis a farce.

    Methodology/logic of paper's authors is:
      1) Drill around to determine the crush zone radius (surely it took lot of drilling around because more holes are needed as one goes away from center. Report says about 60m
      2) Use crush zone radius estimate to "Estimate" the Cavity radius of 40 ± 4 m so that they can zero in with drilling to probe the edge of the real (not estimated) Caivity Radius.
      3) the best they get is a validation that at least 32 m of the 40 ± 4 m was still in the cavity. Now this is a far smaller area compared to drilling required for determining crush zone by brute force method, and it would be reasonable for them to concentrate bulk of their drilling effort here.

    It is similar to using a binocular to estimate the size of a ball one mile away, and then once I reach the ball, I never use a measuring tape to measure the ball's size, and declare binocular estimate as the final measurement (with associated tolerance).

    Here is the way yield estimate (that is function of 3rd power of Cavity Radius) will change for the assumption being made.

    Code: Select all

    Radius    Normaized Yield
    32m          1.0
    36m          1.42
    40m          1.95
    44m          2.60

    Forget about a number smaller than 36m, just 40 ± 4 m translates to 83% error range for 36m versus 44m radius

2) Error analysis

The possible sources of error in the measurement of fission yield are : assay of radioactivity (5-7%); nuclear data such as half life, gamma-ray branching intensity and fission yields (8%); and the error in integration which arises mainly due to the error in Rc (15%). In the assessment of fusion yield, the sources of errors are uncertainty in the elemental composition of the surrounding rock and its effect on the neutron spectrum used in the Monte Carlo simulations of the activity. The propagation of these errors leads to an overall error on the measured yield which is around 20%. Thus it is concluded that the total yield of the thermonuclear device is 50 + 10 kT.

    The scientists surely had presence of mind to take large quantity of rock sample from the debris excavated from the hole. Even if they did forget they can always pick it up from the landfill where it was dumped. Thus
    A) "sources of errors are uncertainty in the elemental composition of the surrounding rock" looks like dog ate my homework excuse to account for errors.
    B.) "its effect on the neutron spectrum used in the Monte Carlo simulations of the activity." Again once the rock composition is know a collage student can tabulate its effect on the neutron spectrum using publicly available data. BARC also has facilities that can expose -reference sample to neutrons of said energy regime; that will give empirical numbers, that is unencumbered by mathematical lookup table and probability functions, as a cross check.

    So the 20% error in Fusion energy estimate is untenable IMVHO.

Others are on the poor quality of the paper is that the author is using cylindrical coordinates system in the equation #4 (that's akin to catching the ear by wrapping arm around the head) instead of spherical coordinates system to allow to add error margins over the double integration; and incorrectly describing the variable 'r' in the equation as density.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Suneet » 09 Sep 2009 10:59

well...


http://news.rediff.com/report/2009/sep/09/pak-nuclear-bomb-was-ready-in-1983-khan.htm

Pakistan's nuclear bomb was ready in 1983: AQ Khan

Pakistan's nuclear programme was overlooked by the United States in its initial year as Islamabad [ Images ] got involved in the Afghan war against Soviet Union, which resulted in making the bomb in a quick period of six years, Pakistani nuclear scientist A Q Khan has said.

'I maintain that the war had provided us with space to enhance our nuclear capability,' the Pakistani nuclear scientist said in an interview to an Urdu Pakistani television channel.

'The credit (for the nuclear bomb) goes to me and my team because it was a very difficult task, which was next to impossible. But given the US and European pressure on our programme, it is true that had the Afghan war not taken place at that time, we would not have been able to make the bomb as early as we did,' Khan told the Aaj News Television.

The interview with Khan, who was recently released from house arrest, was broadcast in Karachi on August 31. The Directorate of National Intelligence's Open Source Centre helpfully translated it from Urdu.

The translated interview has not been publicly released, but Secrecy News of the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) obtained a copy.

Khan, who was put under house arrest by the previous Musharraf regime, from which he was released early this year said, Pakistan was ready to test a nuclear weapon just six years after it first began to enrich uranium.

'It was 6 April 1978 when we achieved our first centrifugal enrichment of uranium. We had achieved 90 per cent (enrichment) by early 1983,' he said.

'I wrote a letter to General Zia on 10 December 1984, telling him that the weapon was ready and that we could detonate it on a notice of one week,' Khan said.

But Zia decided against testing the bomb, he observed.

'We were allying with the United States in the Afghan war. The aid was coming. We asked Gen Zia and his team to go ahead with the test but they said they could not conduct the test, as it would have serious repercussions. They argued that, since the United States had to overlook our nuclear program due to our support in the Afghan war, it was an opportunity for us to further develop the program. They said the tests could be conducted any time later,' Khan said, according to the translation of the transcripts of the interview.

In addition, to a time line for the Pakistani nuclear weapons program, Khan in his interview also discusses the costs and logistics involved, and his successful efforts to evade export controls. "They could not outmaneuver us, as we remained a step ahead always,' he said.

'Since I had been living in Europe for 15 years, I knew about their industry and suppliers very well. I knew who made what. When I came to Pakistan, I started purchasing equipment from them until they proscribed the selling of equipment to us. Then we started purchasing the same equipment through other countries, for example, Kuwait, Bahrain, UAE, Abu Dhabi, and Singapore,' Khan said.

The interview also provides 'interesting information about Pakistan's supply chains, which he says were the same for Iran and Libya as well,' said Ivanka Barzashka, an FAS researcher who is studying the proliferation of centrifuge technology.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Sanku » 09 Sep 2009 11:45

Arun_S wrote:Others are on the poor quality of the paper is that the author is using cylindrical coordinates system in the equation #4 (that's akin to catching the ear by wrapping arm around the head) instead of spherical coordinates system to allow to add error margins over the double integration; and incorrectly describing the variable 'r' in the equation as density.


Umm, isn't that a rather big blooper in a paper of this importance?

Overall appears to be fairly brutal assessment actually (by Arun_S)

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Suneet » 09 Sep 2009 12:37

I think we need better scientists. anyone has internal account on quality of new breed of scientists at DRDO ISRO?
If AQ Khan can pull it off, I believe given proper chance many Indian scientists can pull it off and improve weaponry...

more than pak needs it against us, we need it against china and pak combined...

http://news.rediff.com/special/2009/sep/09/nuke-testing-the-complicated-indian-case.htm

Nuke testing: The complicated Indian case

Although the Central Intelligence Agency was caught napping when India conducted its second nuclear weapons tests in Pokhran in May 1998 and learned of it as did the whole world through CNN, over the months and years that followed, US intelligence and National Security Council officials apparently became more and more convinced that the tests had not yielded the full kilotons established for such tests, and that India would be prevailed upon by the scientific establishment to test again.

Thus, intelligence sources told rediff.com that for most officials who served in the administration of then US President Bill Clinton [ Images ] and were part of the nonproliferation lobby opposed to the Indo-US nuclear deal during the George W Bush [ Images ] administration and were now back in senior positions in the Obama [ Images ] administration, the controversy ignited by erstwhile Defense and Research Development Organisation scientist K Santhanam came as no surprise, albeit more than a decade later.

They argued that Santhanam's revelation was unquestionably driven by growing concern in the scientific establishment that it won't be long before the Obama Administration -- for which ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty is a priority -- would start pushing India once again, as had the Clinton administration, subtly hinting that the full implementation of the Indo-US nuclear deal could only advance in all of its facets on the strength of India's cooperation in such nonproliferation efforts.

According to sources, US intelligence -- through various means, including interactions on the ground, seismic data and estimates conducted by the likes of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California and gleaning of information from US and Indian scientists and national security officials -- had come to the same conclusion as Santhanam that the Pokhran II thermonuclear tests were not a full success.

In the wake of Santhanam's claim, former President A P J Abdul Kalam [ Images ] declared the tests were a success and ridiculed the former's contention, but Homi Sethna, the guiding force behind India nuclear explosion in 1974, waded into the controversy, assailing Kalam and saying he was no qualified authority to question Santhanam who had described the tests as a 'fizzle.'

Amidst the furore, another former chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, P K Iyengar, alleged that the 1998 tests were done in haste while the current chairman Anil Kakodkar said, "India does not need to carry out any more nuclear tests."

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [ Images ], obviously cognizant that this raging debate would only benefit India's critics -- especially those who had opposed the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal, bemoaned the whole hullabaloo as a 'useless controversy.'

Santhanam's doubts were borne out by Samore -- currently the Obama administration's nonproliferation czar and who has been working behind the scenes to push through US Senate ratification of the CTBT -- in an interview with rediff.com just weeks before he joined the administration.

Samore, who was at the time vice president and director of studies at the Council on Foreign Relations -- a veritable repository of many Clinton administration officials who have now joined the Obama Administration, told rediff.com in an interview that "there are people within the Indian nuclear establishment," who had doubts over the tests conducted and would "say that India has only tested a few times whereas the other countries have tested many times, and India needs to keep that option open. But that kind of argument will not be a popular argument internationally."

Samore predicted at the time, even though he had not joined the Obama administration then that he believed "one of the early decisions Obama will make is to seek Senate ratification of the CTBT because the Obama administration will want to demonstrate very early that they are restoring American leadership in the international arms control area."

He said if and when the US Senate ratifies it, "there will inevitably be pressure on other countries like China and India and Pakistan to ratify the treaty."

Samore, now working with influential US lawmakers and their aides to push for Senate ratification, said: "The Chinese have said privately that if America ratifies the CTBT, we (that is Beijing [ Images ]) will. So, if they go ahead with that, then India will naturally be the next big country people will focus on and the Indian government will have to make a decision."

"I don't think it's a question of sort of American pressure on India as it will be international pressure on India. People would say if all the other big countries have joined the CTBT, why not India," he predicted.

Leonard Weiss, the author of the US Nonproliferation Act of 1978, when he served as staff director of both the Senate Subcommittee on Energy and Nuclear Proliferation and the Committee on Governmental Affairs then chaired by Senator John Glenn, told rediff.com that he had been closely following "the dust-up over the 1998 test results," and that interestingly it had similarities with the US experience during its early years of testing.

Weiss, now among many other things, a consultant to the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, which tracks classified data on nuclear weapons programmes worldwide, said, "I have no independent information to say whether one side or the other is correct. But it was the US experience early in the testing programmes for new warheads that each test raised questions that the weapon scientists said required more tests before the warhead was 'certified' for reliability and inclusion in the arsenal."

"I have no doubt that, in the case of the US, more tests were requested and performed than were needed," and quipped, "if a scientist's career depends on weapons tests, he or she is likely to support more testing, and the US spared no expense when it came to the weapons labs."

Weiss, however, acknowledged: "The Indian case presents a more complicated situation because, in the absence of information as to the level of Indian sophistication in the area of weapon simulation -- Indian claims notwithstanding -- it is hard to judge whether sufficient data was collected from Pokhran II to make further testing unnecessary from a weapon designer's perspective."

"Of course, from a more general perspective, the Indian weapon programme has produced sufficiently good weapons -- they did go 'bang' at Pokhran II -- to provide a nuclear deterrent that only insane fools or idiots would ignore."

Weiss, who was also a vehement opponent of the Indo-US nuclear deal, along with the likes of Samore and Einhorn -- now the senior nonproliferation adviser to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton [ Images ], said: "On that basis alone, India ought to sign the CTBT," but reiterated that "India has the same problem that the US does when it comes to testing."

"There will always be credentialed scientists insisting that more testing is needed to ensure reliability and safety, regardless of the real security situation or how low the likelihood of a nuclear war. And the weapon scientists in India, as is still the case in the US -- but decreasingly -- have too much sway in determining national security policy, while the political class is too afraid of challenging their judgment at a time when there is much security concerns among the populace."

Weiss said, "That's why those of us, who opposed the Indo-US nuclear agreement felt that the refusal of the Indian negotiators to give any quarter on the issue of testing meant that India would probably test again at some point, though the purpose would likely be mostly political rather than technologically substantive."

"I still believe in Indo-US technological cooperation, but I also think nuclear trade should wait until such time as India feels comfortable signing the CTBT and stops producing nuclear material for weapons." Weiss said, "The claim by some Indian scientists that India's computer simulation codes are sufficient for future improvements in weapon design only adds to the argument for the CTBT."

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby PratikDas » 09 Sep 2009 12:54

^^^^^^^^^

Why don't these stupid reporters question what the US did about China giving Pakistan nuclear weapons? How did Pakistan become a non-NATO US ally? How did the US allow Pakistan to tie their commitment to CTBT with India's decision? Shouldn't Pakistan be forced to sign first because it has no credible and independent achievement in the field? Since the US has done none of the above correctly, why the hell should we care what they think is the right thing to do?

How on earth does the US and India have the same problems with testing? The US has an arsenal of warheads and missiles in the thousands. So what if some are old and don't work. We don't have that luxury. We have limited fissile material, incredibly few verified designs, probably an insignificant number of AGNI-III missiles for delivery, and no submarine delivery option. None of those limitations apply to the US with their submarine launched ICBMs.

Global nuclear disarmament or nothing at all.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Austin » 09 Sep 2009 13:08

Interesting AQ Khan , continues to brag openly how he managed to build his WMD by importing stuff from every where under US noose and we continue to debate on whether we need test or not :lol:

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby dipak » 09 Sep 2009 13:17

Austin wrote:Interesting AQ Khan , continues to brag openly how he managed to build his WMD by importing stuff from every where under US noose and we continue to debate on whether we need test or not :lol:



Yes, but do you want India to be clubbed with NoKo, Cuba and Pakistan? That seems the concern here.
Sign the CTBT!

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby rakall » 09 Sep 2009 13:21

Austin wrote:Interesting AQ Khan , continues to brag openly how he managed to build his WMD by importing stuff from every where under US noose :lol:


Where does that put the proliferation standards/record of the US.. as they try to teach the world the idea(l)s of non-proliferation !!!!

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby PratikDas » 09 Sep 2009 13:23

dipak wrote:
Austin wrote:Interesting AQ Khan , continues to brag openly how he managed to build his WMD by importing stuff from every where under US noose and we continue to debate on whether we need test or not :lol:



Yes, but do you want India to be clubbed with NoKo, Cuba and Pakistan? That seems the concern here.
Sign the CTBT!

Please take into account Israel's anomalous status as a nuclear weapons state, how the US let Israel enjoy that anomalous status for decades, and how the US managed to keep all the other nuclear weapons states from making a fuss about it, and then explain to us what is so wrong with India claiming a unique position for itself.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Tanaji » 09 Sep 2009 13:36

Things we dont know:

  • The Yield
  • The design
  • The depth of the shaft
  • The output of radio chemical analysis
  • There is divergence on seismological measurements as well
  • Was it a thermo nuke or FBF
  • Was it a device or a weapon


Given that we know absolutely *zero* for sure, and there is even more of a "zero" probability of finding out the first 4 items, what is the point in claiming a fizzle or sizzle?

This debate is purely down to the individual:

What or Whom do you want to believe?

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby amit » 09 Sep 2009 14:03

There is another aspect IMO.

Suppose there's another round of testing. And this time the same team of RC, AK and Sikka explode an TN device or weapon and claim 200kt.

Now the NPA Aytollah's come and say bullshit our measurements show that its 20kt.

Then what? Whom do we believe, the same scientists whom we did not believe after POK II or the NPAs?

I have a feeling there's plenty of folks here would be more comfortable with the NPA viewpoint.

Do note that nobody posting on BRF would be actually conducting the experiments or doing the measurements. Neither will, unfortunately, PKI, BK, BC, KS and all the doubters.

So? Back to Square One and another 60 pages of roh-dho and demand for another round of tests?

Ultimately it's a trust issue as Tanaji correctly points out.

If you don't trust your own nuclear scientists and claim in front of an audience of folks who don't have the technical expertise to understand that these very same scientists make amateurish mistakes in their calculations in published papers which are critiqued by their peers around the world, then what's the use of asking them to go for a another round of explosions? Why is Sikka's presentation at IDSA deemed so important? The guy can't even get his maths right.

Maybe a team comprising all the dissenters and "experts" should be put together to conduct PoKIII. If no one else, at least a section of BRF will believe them.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby AmitR » 09 Sep 2009 14:09

amit wrote:Maybe a team comprising all the dissenters and "experts" should be put together to conduct PoKIII. If no one else, at least a section of BRF will believe them.


By any yardstick one test for a complicated technology like TN device is not sufficient. The writing is clear on the wall, we need more tests to prove the deterrence once and for all. In addition, extra tests will give us more data for simulation. Other countries have many more tests than us for this reason only.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby Tanaji » 09 Sep 2009 14:25

Why should only Shiv give crude analogies, let me give one as well ;)

Lets suppose you are the world's greatest cook. You have been asked to judge whether a culinary dish made by another chef is delicious or not. However,

You dont have access to the dish, you cant taste the dish yourself nor can you smell or touch or see it
You dont know the ingredients
You dont know the preparation method

In fact no one in the world apart from the cook knows the above three. What you do have access to is the sh*it / fae*ces that a person generated after eating it. But you can only smell those, not analyze them yourselves.

Will you be able to tell if it was delicious with any amount of certainty?

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby amit » 09 Sep 2009 14:28

AmitR wrote:By any yardstick one test for a complicated technology like TN device is not sufficient. The writing is clear on the wall, we need more tests to prove the deterrence once and for all. In addition, extra tests will give us more data for simulation. Other countries have many more tests than us for this reason only.


AmitR,

I also feel we need to test more, no doubt about that. And not just because of the technical data but also for geopolitical reasons. We need to show Chincom that we are dead serious.

However, the issue I raise is different and that's a trust issue. If the same set of scientists who have been derided conduct another set of tests, would we believe the results they claim or the data that they say they have collected?

The issue (at least here IMO) has long transcended from the simple scientific rationale of test for more data and refined bombs to test again but keep in mind we don't trust you.

JMT
Last edited by amit on 09 Sep 2009 14:32, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby amit » 09 Sep 2009 14:31

Tanaji, :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:

You outdo the great master Shiv ji himself! :wink:

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby geeth » 09 Sep 2009 14:48

>>>In order to obtain the total number of fissions, it is necessary to devise a method of integration. The radius of the crush zone was obtained from the drilling data and was found to be about 60 m. This gave an estimate of the cavity radius (Rc) as 40 ± 4 m. The early samples from the recent drilling operations at a position 32 m away from the earlier position showed nearly same level of radioactivity indicating that the Rc is positively more than 32m. The total number of fissions (TF) was obtained by integrating the fitted curve (Figure 4) over the entire active zone . This integration was carried out using the following equation,

>>>Cavity radius estimate is the most critical geometric feature required for yield estimate. The authors mention that just two holes were used to estimate the radius, that too with the assertion that "indicating that the Rc is positively more than 32m." .This must be a joke in science. For statistical validity a population of 2 samples (that presumes one of them is dead center if the cavity) set makes the whole statistical analysis a farce.

Arun_S,

How did you arrive at the conclusion that just two holes were drilled? From the bolded portions indicated in your BARC quote what I understand is that :

From an earlier position (as centre), they drilled holes on the circumference of a circle 32 m in radius, and obtained many samples. All these samples were found to be homogenous in radio activity, confirming that this earlier position (centre) was not way too off-centre from the actual geometric centre of the cavity. This is again confirmed from an earlier para in the same document

Quote

Radiochemical methods of determining the yield of the device involve measurement of radioactivity in the samples retrieved from this region. Several measurement strategies involving estimation of fission and fusion reactants, different fission and activation products and their daughter products are used to estimate the yield. It is also essential that a large number of samples be analysed to obtain the pattern of the distribution of these activities and, wherever necessary, evolve a method of integration to obtain the overall activity produced since any small sample taken in this puddle can hardly be expected to be a true representative of concentrations which can be related to the yield. What is reported here is one such methodology.

Unquote

So, they are not as big a bunch of fools to take just two samples, as you make them out to be..

>>>Others are on the poor quality of the paper is that the author is using cylindrical coordinates system in the equation #4 (that's akin to catching the ear by wrapping arm around the head) instead of spherical coordinates system to allow to add error margins over the double integration

Pls explain in what way the spherical co-ordinate would reduce the margin of error according to your assessment. Mind you, the molten metal is not forming a sphere when it cools down.

Please also tell what is your personal experience in radio chemical analysis or methodology for you to be so highly critical of the BARC team. If it is so elementary that one needs no past experience in analysing such data, pls explain that also.
Last edited by geeth on 09 Sep 2009 15:08, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby csharma » 09 Sep 2009 14:52

Since India has already proclaimed that it does not need any more tests and has a moratarium on further tests, further nuclear tests would be complicated.

Now the question is : does one really believe that India has all the data. One interesting piece of information that has emerged is that Santhanam said that the sub kiloton tests were all about creating the thermonuclear weapon. Following is the quote:

The three smaller fission tests were totally devoted to producing thermo nuclear warheads and these were scientific in nature and likelihood of getting another chance to repeat the tests, were remote.


Nobody on the forum has described what Santhanam meant by that and how do the chotus help in creating a reliable thermonuclear weapon. Experts should explain to us novices what Santhanam meant.

Now if someone believes that the tests were fully successful and India can create 200kt thermonuclear warhead with very high degree of confidence, why should India test now purely from weapon point of view.
However, India may not sign CTBT because it is discriminatory and keep the option to test at a later date purely from a political point of view.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby geeth » 09 Sep 2009 14:57

>>>Now if someone believes that the tests were fully successful and India can create 200kt thermonuclear warhead with very high degree of confidence, why should India test now purely from weapon point of view.

If the option is between :

1. Conduct the test and sign shitty bitty
2. Do not conduct test and do not sign Shitty Bitty,

I would personally prefer option (2), because, at a later date we may be able to do something better that that of doing it now.

Best thing is ofcourse, conduct test and do not sign Shitty Bitty.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby geeth » 09 Sep 2009 15:14

>>>Overall appears to be fairly brutal assessment actually (by Arun_S)

Sanku, question to you also :

Why would the BARC 'idiots' use cylindrical co-ordinates, instead of spherical co-ordinates? Any idea?

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby John Snow » 09 Sep 2009 15:18

Satisfaction Guaranteed, or Will gladly take back the bum.
Questions concerns 1-800- BARC-BFW.

If this is not reassuring what else can?

In spherical you can't do goal Mal

In cylindical you can store goal mal neatly
Last edited by John Snow on 09 Sep 2009 15:20, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Pokhran II not fully successful: Scientist - Part-2

Postby geeth » 09 Sep 2009 15:20

>>>One must commend R.Chidambaram, Anil Kakodkar and Sikka ji for such fantastic improvement in accuracy of yield estimation using radio-chem. Instead of better accuracy from +/- 7% they increase it 3 times to +/-20%. :twisted:

Are these errors + / -7% and * / -20% over the SAME data or over DIFFERENT data? Did you fail to notice one is Seismic and the other is Radio-Chemical data?


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