New aircraft improve NNSA’s ability to detect radiation

Military Technology
King Air 350ER NNSA

Three new King Air 350ER aircraft will be used by teams based at Nellis Air Force Base.

MYSTERY WIRE — Three new aircraft that measure radiation were unveiled last week by the National Nuclear Security Administration.

The aircraft will replace older equipment and will be used by teams based at Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas.

Among the functions of these Aerial Measuring System aircraft: establishing baselines for radiation levels to make it easier to detect spikes that might indicate abnormal radiation. That could help trigger early warning of a nuclear device or a radiation leak.

Department of Energy Undersecretary for Nuclear Security and NNSA Administrator Lisa E. Gordon-Hagerty issued this statement:

“As part of its dual public safety and national security mission, AMS aircraft frequently support security preparations for high-profile events such as presidential inaugurations, the Super Bowl, Boston Marathon, and other major public events. Although these deployments are not well-known to the public, they’re part of a critical apparatus working behind the scenes to keep the American people safe.”

The King Air 350ER aircraft are have specialized radiation detection systems to measure air and ground contamination following a nuclear or radiological accident or incident.

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