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SPECIAL REPORT: Salisbury – and the future

MEET US ON THE NEXT CBRN EVENTS NCT Europe, June 25-27, 2019 at Vienna (AUSTRIA) DSEi London Excel, September 10-13, 2019 at London (UNITED KINGDOM) The CBRNe Protection Symposium, September 24-26, 2019 at Malmö (SWEDEN) Milipol Paris, September 19-22, 2019 at Paris (FRANCE)

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Foreword Andy Oppenheimer assesses the rise in extremism.

06 08

Events & Advertisers

SPECIAL REPORT: Reinstate the red line Col Hamish de Bretton Gordon assesses Salisbury and Russian CW.




Banning the Bomb Col H R Naidu Gade asks if we will ever abolish nuclear weapons.


Feel the pulse James McQuaid rolls out a new metals & radiation detector.

Small, smart, and cheap Andy Oppenheimer warns of CBRN attacks from the air.


After Gatwick: stopping the drones Peter Lashbrook asks if ECM against UAVs is effective.



Hot medicine in the trenches Frank G. Rando describes CBRN medical care on the battlefield.


C2 for everyone Timo Paakki rolls out a major upgrade of CBRNe sensors.


Joining the dots Col James Hall argues the case for networking CBRNe detection.

Subterranean CBRNe scenario.

Biodetection: the multiple approach Rachel Wynn introduces a new approach to biodetection.


You can’t fight if you can’t hear Prof David Crouch looks at CBRN military protection.


48 56



Protect the victim and the hero Giles Kyser explains how to protect CBRN medical personnel.

So what does that mean? Greg Ouzounian tracks down clandestine CW labs.

14 32 18




CASE STUDY Sverdlovsk: 40 years on Col Zyg Dembek analyses the 1979 anthrax outbreak.

Taming the dragon Frank G. Rando argues that US budget cuts are a threat to chemical safety. After Bhopal: India rules Col Ram Athavale shows how India’s chemicals industry is leading the way.


Unifying the real with the virtual Yaron Mizrachi describes advances in CBRNE simulation.


Cleaning up Chris Hodge examines the true costs of decontamination.


Making buildings resilient Stefano Miorotti & Renato Bonora explain how to improve buildings resilience.


Warrior shows Kevin Cresswell rolls out a next-generation scaleable system.


Ponos versus pathos Dee L. Ruelas examines the psychosocial effects of CBRN attacks.

CBNW is published by React Media Publishing, 50 Summit Way, Southgate, London N14 7NP. Telephone: + 44 7411 559550 E-mail: tina@chembio.biz www.cbnw.co.uk

Publisher Tahmiena Naji | Editor-in-Chief Andy Oppenheimer AIExpE MIABTI Deputy Editors Dr. Salma Abbasi, David Oliver | US Correspondent Frank Rando Designer/Production Manager Mariel Tabora Foulds Printed by: The Manson Group, 8 Porters Wood, Valley Road Industrial Estate, St Albans AL3 6PZ. Tel: 01727 848440


ISSN 2051-6584. © React Media Publishing 2019. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be used, reproduced, stored in an information retrieval system or transmitted in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of React Media. This publication has been prepared wholly upon information supplied by the contributors and while the publishers trust that its contents will be of interest to readers, its accuracy cannot be guaranteed. The publishers are unable to accept, and hereby expressly disclaim any liability for the consequences of any inaccuracies, errors or omissions in such information whether occurring during the processing of such information for publication or otherwise. No representations, whether within the meaning of the Misrepresentation Act 1967 or otherwise, warranties or endorsements of any information contained herein are given or intended and full verification of all information appearing in the publication of the articles contained herein does not necessarily imply that any opinions therein are necessarily those of the publishers.

CBNW 2019/02 03

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irst, the good news. One year since the first nerve agent attack on British soil the decontamination sites in the fine city of Salisbury were declared safe. The Skripal home was declared free of Novichok on 1 March. Also in March, the fall of the five-year brutal Daesh ‘caliphate’ was announced after Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces raised victory flags over the Syrian town of Baghuz, the terrorists’ last official stronghold. Now, the bad news. Salisbury may have been cleaned up, but the case is far from closed. Counter Terrorism Policing Senior National Coordinator Dean Haydon said: “A year on from the attack on the Skripals and Det Sgt Bailey in Salisbury, there are parts of the picture that we are continuing to piece together.” The Salisbury Novichok – to all intents and purposes deployed by a nation-state – reminds us of how a tiny amount of a highly lethal CBRN substance not only kills, but takes months to clean up and resolve for full assurance of public safety. Britain is to boost its defences against chemical attacks with £11 million extra funding to prepare for more Salisbury-style poisonings. The money will be spent deploying drones and robots into potentially hazardous areas, cutting the risk to personnel and identifying threats faster. Second: Daesh. Its occupation of extensive areas of Iraq and Syria may have ended, but they certainly haven’t. Thousands of fighters remain elsewhere in the region. Governments and intelligence services warn that the terror group remain a threat. Out of hundreds of returnees to European countries, potential sleeper cells are

an abiding concern. Of all chemical weapons use in the Syrian Civil War, only 2% were attributed to ISIS. But as we all know, it only takes one attack to cause death, injury and mayhem. You can kill the enemy, but not his ideology. Following the terrorist massacre of 50 Muslims at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand on 15 March, Daesh called on its followers to retaliate. In a rare audio recording from the group’s spokesman, a six-month silence was broken to call on ISIS supporters to “take vengeance for their religion.” And as previously warned in this column, and exemplified in stark horror in the New Zealand attack, the prime rising security and public threat is from far-Right extremism. According to MI5 Director General Andrew Parker and Met Police Commissioner Cressida Dick, “numerous plots” have been thwarted in the UK since the London and Manchester attacks in 2017. The UK’s lead anti-extremism commissioner, Sara Khan has said UK-based far-Right activists are “organised, professional and actively attempting to recruit.” The New Zealand attack also reminds us of a common terrorist MO, the multiple use of firearms. But the far Right also have form with attempts at makeshift CBRN. Looking back: in 2003 the arrest of a neo-Nazi Texan, William Krar, led investigators to discover more than 500,000 rounds of ammunition, 65 pipe bombs and remote-control briefcase bombs. He also hoarded a kilo of sodium cyanide, along with components to convert it into a dispersal weapon capable of killing thousands. In 2008 an independently wealthy American neo-Nazi, James Cummings, acquired four one-gallon containers of uranium and thorium mix, beryllium powder, and instructions to build a radiological dispersal device. In November 2011 a plot by four antigovernment militia members in Georgia involved blowing up government buildings and a mass-casualty attack using ricin. This also highlighted the insider threat: one of the group was working for the federal Department of Agriculture, giving him access to chemicals and the means to attack food and water supplies. In February 2017, a member of the white-supremacist ‘Creativity Movement’ was arrested after hospitalising himself with side-effects produced by his experiments with ricin. This prompted a large-scale FBI investigation. Although historical examples, these cases throw up warnings of another, sometimes overlooked, terrorist ideology and possible use of CBRN in terrorist acts in our increasingly extremist times. ❚❙

In this edition, we look at burgeoning new technologies. Andy Oppenheimer assesses the threat of drones for CBRN attacks while Peter Lashbrook outlines countermeasures against them. Col Hamish de Bretton Gordon reviews the effects of Novichok in Salisbury. Detection is a prevailing theme: Greg Ouzounian tracks down clandestine CW labs, James McQuaid rolls out a new handheld metal and radiation detector, Rachel Wynn introduces orthogonal biological detection, Col James Hall looks at networking for CBRNe sensors and Timo Paakki rolls out a 21st-century sensor upgrade. Military operations are also to the fore, with Frank Rando looking at CBRNe battlefield casualty care and David Crouch boosts our situational awareness. And as ever, we at CBNW extend our thanks to all of you who help keep us safe.

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EVENTS – 2019








06 CBNW 2019/02

DSEi Excel, London




7th EOD Workshop Trencin, Slovakia



13th CBW Protection Symposium Malmo, Sweden





NCT Asia KL, Malaysia




DSEi Japan Japan www.dsei-japan.com

Milipol Paris www.en.milipol.com

International Security Expo London Olympia www.internationalsecurity.com

CBRNE Summit Asia Bangkok, Thailand events@intelligence-sec.com

CHEMICAL WEAPONS ©imordaf from Pixabay


© Kat Wilcox from Pexels

Salisbury became a ghost town as residents abandoned the city centre after the attack. ©falco from Pixabay

Reinstate the RED LINE Col Hamish de Bretton Gordon assesses the effects of the Salisbury attack, the role of the Russians, and further proliferation of chemical weapons 08 CBNW 2019/02

CHEMICAL WEAPONS The botched assassination attempt of former spy Sergei Skripol by the Russian Military Secret Service (GRU) on 4 March 2018 killed an innocent civilian, Dawn Sturgess, in June; injured four others; terrorised a city; and caused millions of pounds-worth of damage to property and the local economy


he UK Government announced on 1 March 2019 – one whole year after the first Novichok attack – that the clean-up of Salisbury was complete and the city was now entirely free of the deadly agent. Had we not been so diligent in the decontamination of every drop of Novichok, thousands could have died. The military, emergency services and security services have done an amazing job and prevented many casualties.

The Russian pattern

The use of nerve agent on British soil was a sickening and despicable act and

follows a pattern of Russian behaviour aimed at trying to destabilise the West and extend Russian influence. It is furthering the abhorrent use of chemical weapons (CW), which sadly has been ‘normalised’ in the past few years – with frequent successful use by the Assad regime in Syria, and by Daesh in Syria and Iraq. CW are morbidly brilliant for fighting in built up areas, and the psychological terror they impart is exactly what terror groups look for in a weapon. The threat is evolving and to slavishly follow ‘NBC’ protocols of Cold War days will find us wanting. If the Russians now see Novichok as a key strategic and tactical weapon and are very likely to

The NH15 Combo Escape Hood.

use it in any confrontation with the West, we all have some catching up to do. The Russian super-WMD of Novichok filled the headlines for 12 months. More alarmingly, it served as a bright neon advertising sign to jihadists who are now directing their followers to attack Western targets with them. This type of Russian behaviour is no doubt to help Putin’s domestic standing and take his people’s eyes off their communities’ problems. Putin is a great strategist and runs rings round many global leaders. But it is with evil intent in a Mafia- type persona that he seems intent on undermining global harmony, certainly the UK’s and that of our Allies. Putin is clearly demonstrating to the West he possesses a super-WMD and that it over-matches NATO defensive and offensive capabilities in this area. There is little doubt that in the unlikely event of an East-West confrontation, he would not hesitate to use all weapons like these at his disposal. So what next? We must restart the dialogue with Russia to normalise relations, however distasteful this currently appears. Putin must also come to realise his tactics have no place in today’s world. But this will take firm, direct and forthright leadership from the likes of the US, UK and France.

The military role

©Avon Protection

Novichok aside, the West vastly overmatches Russia militarily – a fact Putin knows all too well, but perhaps not the Russian people. In Syria, Putin has put on display his best military hardware, and not unlike the GRU itself most of it appears to be some way behind ours in its technology, capability and reliability. Sadly, we have learnt from President Bashir al-Assad’s’ success in Syria that CW are morbidly brilliant for winning the most difficult of battles in built-up areas. Battles and sieges fought in towns and cities could have been much curtailed had these dreadful weapons been used. Nevertheless, civilians suffer most – with no respirators to protect them against these most indiscriminate of weapons. The sight of young children in Syria choking to death on the original WMD used in World War I – chlorine – must be enough to galvanise world leaders to act against their use. It is clear that the UK Ministry of  CBNW 2019/02 09

CHEMICAL WEAPONS The FM50 general-purpose mask.

©Avon Protection

Defence (MOD) now recognises CBRN as a major threat and the standing up of 28 Regt RE (C-CBRN) as the defence lead for C-CBRN is the most tangible sign of this re-investment.

Restoring the red line

Since the Obama ‘red line’ was crossed and no action was taken after the massive nerve agent attack on Ghouta, Syria on 23 August 2013, CW have become a commonplace tactic in this theatre of war. As the perfect terror weapon as well, the genie is very much out of the bottle. Weak politicians around the globe have helped create the monster that is CW. These weapons look likely to plague the towns, cities and battlefields of the future. Therefore, we must make demonstrable efforts – at the UN especially – to re-impose the red line. Most Western and NATO countries have paid lip service to CBRN defence since the end of the last Cold War. This is evident in the UK MOD, with the challenges we faced in dealing with the nerve agent attack in Salisbury. Here virtually all military capability was deployed to support the police and emergency services – all for just a quarter-of-an-egg-cupful of nerve agent. With the 100-year taboo on the use 10 CBNW 2019/02

“To use a PPE vernacular, perhaps an escape hood for the terror threat in your pocket and a respirator for the state threat in your Bergen?” of CW and the red line well and truly broken, their use has become normalised and due to their effectiveness and low cost are likely to be the choice for all protagonists in the future.

TIC attacks

The most likely threat from terrorists are readily available toxic industrial chemicals (TICs), but the continued state-on-state threat from sophisticated CWAs like Novichoks is now a realistic possibility. Therefore, the UK must develop appropriate countermeasures and tactics as top priority. It is likely we will get little warning of a TIC attack but some warning of a CWA attack. As such, we should structure our military capability in the counter-CBRN space to reflect this. TICs are generally

low in persistence and toxicity and CWAs are high in persistence and toxicity – hence, basic PPE for the former and more sophisticated but at readiness for the later. Sergei Skripol is recovering, but he and his daughter are now virtual prisoners in their new home, and Yulia through no fault of her own. Yulia must want to return to normal life without the threat of a Russian bullet or poison round every corner, and the least we should do is to help her in this regard. I hope she can ‘hide in plain sight’ and get on with her life, probably not in Russia and, hopefully, in her father’s adopted country. Perhaps the realisation that it took a year to declare Salisbury CWA-free will galvanise politicians and diplomats to attempt to normalise our relationship with Russia, as well as allowing the Skripols a decent future – and to lead the way to eradicate CW from the planet. From a military perspective, however, we now need to review our counter-CBRN capability to ensure it matches the future threat and not the status quo ante. ❚❙ Col. Hamish de Bretton Gordon is a Chemical Weapons Expert and Advisor to NGOs in Syria & Iraq.

Photo by ©Training Support Activity Europe (Spc. Craig Carter)


O 5 TH J U N E 2 O 1 8 French 1st Regiment equipped with Paul Boyé Technologies CBRN protective equipment during the SETC (Strong Europe Tank Challenge) in Grafenwoehr, Germany.


w w w. p a u l b o y e . c o m NCT EUROPE Symposium on CBRN threats VIENNA - AUSTRIA JUNE 25-26 2019


DETECTION Extraction of precursors (pseudoephedrine) from inside a drugs lab.

Illicit meth lab.

So what does that mean? Improvised explosives lab.

Greg Ouzounian looks at ways to track and close down clandestine chemical weapons laboratories

Observable indicators and detection point-results can be used to assess a lab’s purpose.

Chlorine, mustard, sulphur-mustard and worse have been used in Iraq and Syria by state actors and non-state actors such as Daesh. While state actors like the Syrian regime have access to documented and suspected chemical munitions facilities, non-state actors rely more on improvised chemical weapon (CW) labs for the synthesis and fabrication of improvised munitions All photos ©Alluviam LLC


he first documented use of sulphur mustard by Daesh occurred on 11 August 2015, when it fired mortar rounds at a village south of Erbil under Kurdish Peshmerga control. An assessment conducted in 2016 by IHS Conflict Monitor indicated that at least 52 chemical attacks had taken place on the battlefield in Syria and Iraq. Continued use of chemical warfare agents (CWAs) on the battlefield culminated with missile responses by several western governments on facilities under the control of the Assad regime in Syria. Coalition forces also responded with air assaults against Daesh-identified chemical munitions facilities in both Iraq and Syria. Fast-forward to the July 2017 Sydney, Australia hydrogen sulphide plot. This is one instance where Daesh knowledge gained on the battlefields of Iraq and Syria may proliferate as foreign fighters attempt to return to their home countries. 12 CBNW 2019/02

This further reinforces the imperative of responders being able to successfully apply ‘left-of-the-boom’ strategies when dealing with improvised warfare agents (IWAs) and other weaponized toxic industrial chemicals (W-TIC).

Finding the labs

Effective tactics honed when addressing the threat of IEDs – specifically, applying similar left-of-the-boom strategies learned while containing these threats – substantially increases the odds that IWA plots can be successfully disrupted, dismantled, and interdicted prior to the execution of these plots. It is relatively easy to identify and monitor large industrial facilities related to the production of warfare agents and their precursors. Western governments, UN bodies and other NGOs have the specialised tools and skill sets required to monitor and assess activities of these facilities.

Tracking clandestine supply chains, smaller quantities of precursors, and identifying small IWA/W-TIC clandestine labs becomes much more difficult as Daesh knowledge disperses through affiliated terrorism activities outside the Middle East. First responders, investigators, military units and others that may be the first on-scene to run across these activities may not have the same level of subject matter expertise found in national and international organisations tasked with monitoring nation-state activities. Their recognition of suspicious activities, chemicals and equipment likely found in these clandestine facilities coupled with good intelligence are keys to the early, and successful, interdiction of plots involving IWA/W-TIC.

Order out of chaos

While there is no replacement for a properly trained operator on the ground, decision support tools, when coupled

DETECTION with the right sensing and sampling kit, can certainly act as a potent forcemultiplier by providing ‘so what does that mean’ insights to responders on-scene. They can also quickly identify appropriate protective actions and consequence management measures given the hazards found on-scene. Traditionally, point-results from detectors – especially when there are no tell-tale ‘smoking gun’ detection results – along with other observable indicators documented on-scene are forwarded back to subject matter experts at analysis centres. These may be located many kilometres or time zones away from where operational decisions need to be made. The overheads associated with this process, and the time delays involved in getting results back on-scene result in potentially lost opportunities in the timely disruption of these suspect activities. When indicators on-scene do not point to an outcome known by responders, HazMasterG3 has a clandestine laboratory identification tool where the observed indicators can be selected, and HazMasterG3 will cross-correlate these inputs to indicate the mostly likely purpose of the lab.

determine the intent of a clandestine lab, and to answer a range of other questions directly at the point of need on-scene. A decision support tool like HazMasterG3 allows responders to take the point-detection results from detectors and virtually mix them together to model the most likely end-product formulations being made in the lab. This can be done along with calculating potentially how much end-product could be made, given the quantities of chemicals found on-scene. HazMasterG3 also indicates what key materials may be missing to complete a given formulation, or what substitutes could be used in place of any of the key ingredients within a formulation.

Answering questions

After an entry team samples unidentified chemicals found on-scene, these results can be factored in with observable on-scene indicators to reinforce, or refute, assumptions made about a lab’s purpose, given the initial observable indicators found on-scene. There is a certain overlap between some equipment, consumables and chemicals found between types of

labs (illicit narcotics, explosives, IWAs, etc). The presumptive results of pointdetection samples, combined with the observable indicators of equipment, protective gear, and other consumables found on-scene, can help illuminate the type of lab along with other hazards present on-scene. This provides valuable insight for responders to know when determining potential mitigation, decontamination and other consequence management protocols. It is also useful for other follow-on intelligence and investigational purposes. Combining decision support with detection technologies directly at the point of need at an incident puts advanced tools into the hands of responders and investigators. It provides valuable insights to help keep responders safe, answer ‘so-what questions’ such as, what is being made in the lab – and to help build more complete prosecution packages to achieve convictions in court. HazMasterG3, Alluviam’s flagship decision-support product earned US Department of Homeland Security Certification and Designation as an approved counter-terrorism technology

Making actionable decisions

Integrating detection point results, along with observable indicators found by responders’ on-scene decision support systems like Alluviam’s HazMasterG3, can now be done on today’s smartphones and tablets customarily carried by responders. This makes it possible to cross-correlate these indicators and detection results in near real-time to A better understanding of an illicit lab’s intent leads to better and more timely response measures taken on-scene. ©San Diego County Sheriff

in 2006. With an extensive database of over 167,000 materials and trade names, it is the only mobile technology available that has earned this certification. It is deployed into several programmes of record and is used at training centres both in the US and with NATO. ❚❙ Greg Ouzounian is the Director of Business Development at Alluviam LLC. He spent over twelve years in the US intelligence community working on terrorism, trans-national, narcotics and other special collection problems. CBNW 2019/02 13


Small, smart, and cheap SPECIAL FOCUS

Andy Oppenheimer looks at increased chances of a CBRN attack – from the air


In October 2018, FBI Director Christopher A. Wray warned that the threat of drones and other unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) was “steadily escalating” due to their widespread availability and ease of use


he lack of verified identification requirement to procure them and growing precedent in conflict zones, UAS (also UAVs – unmanned aerial vehicles) are the ‘new black’ in the pantheon of terrorist threats. For some time, however, UAVs have raised concerns as a novel method of attack: for IEDs, CBRN agents or simply, hoaxes. As an aerial vehicle without a human pilot on board, a UAV is controlled by a remote operator on the ground, like a flying robot. Or it flies autonomously through software-controlled flight plans in their embedded systems which work alongside on-board sensors and GPS. They have become increasingly popular – with estimated sales of five million worldwide. Their multifarious uses include military surveillance and air strikes, aerial inspections, delivery, shipping, and photography. The technology is rapidly evolving, meaning sophisticated drones are reaching the open market at increasingly affordable prices. Coordinated attacks that deploy multiple drones have therefore become possible. They would become a delivery system of choice for terrorists as they can operate the vehicles from a distance while remaining anonymous and covert. UAVs can cause a similar level of disruption both on the ground and in the air. Commercial smaller drones are just as dangerous and can be homemade.

The Gatwick fiasco

The inevitable disruption to aviation was seen on 19 December 2018, when an airport security officer reported a sighting of two drones flying with flashing lights over the south perimeter road around Gatwick Airport. This led to 1,000 flights being cancelled or diverted in the next three days, affecting 140,000 passengers. Army back-up was needed. And while the origin of the sighted vehicles is still not 14 CBNW 2019/02

confirmed – with theories emerging that they were flown by a disgruntled employee – further questions arise. What if the craft had carried IEDs, and had dropped them onto a runway or the airport terminal building? Or an improvised chemical device (ICD) or other means of dispersing CBRN agents? Registration of recreational drones will soon be required in the UK and the US and permission to fly in some areas across the US and UK. UK amateur pilots may need a commercial licence in some areas.

The usual suspects

The conflict in Syria and Iraq has seen the evolving use of drones by a range of terrorist and rebel groups. While Daesh is in military decline in Iraq and Syria, it continues in other war-torn countries and has form with drone usage. As well as dropped IEDs to attack the Peshmerga, Daesh have used UAVs for propaganda filming and intelligence. In January 2018, rebel  fighters in north-western Syria

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DRONES ©Andre Wadman/Wikimedia

©Gatwick Airport

There is a 1-km exclusion zone around Gatwick Airport, where passengers endured days of delays and cancellations after drones were sighted on 19 December 2018.

Only in May 2018 did the UK government finally make it illegal to fly a drone above 121.92 m or within 1 km of an airport. The ‘1-km airport rule’ was introduced following a rapid increase in reported UAV drone incidents with aircraft, reaching 93 in 2017.

UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) guidelines  Always keep your drone within your line of sight and at a maximum height of 120 m  Always make sure your drone is within 500 m from you horizontally  Always fly your drone away from aircraft, helicopters, airports and airfields  Camera drones must be flown at last 50 m away from a person, vehicle, building, or structure not owned or controlled by the pilot  Camera drones cannot fly within 150 m of a congested area or large group of people, like a sporting event or a concert Nicolas Maduro just two months earlier, when on 4 August 2018 two drones each carrying 1 kg of plastic explosives were dropped onto a military ceremony. Maduro was unharmed when the drone payloads detonated overhead.

attacked a Russian airbase with several UAVs. Daesh have reconfigured craft directed by trained drone pilots to carry and drop small IEDs and munitions. In October 2016 a drone shot down in northern Iraq exploded on being dismantled, killing two Kurdish officers. Tactics for their use have been tested and refined and could migrate to non-conflict zones. Their modus operandi could be repeated or copied by followers in other regions. TTPs (tactics, techniques and procedures) learned abroad could be adapted to European targets. Hezbollah used hostile drones as early as 2004. Houthi rebels are using them to ram Saudi air defences in Yemen. Libyan and Syrian rebels, Hamas, Farc, and Colombian and Mexican drug cartels are also established drone users. FBI Director Wray also warned against UAV deployment against a vulnerable target, such as a mass gathering. He was alluding to an assassination attempt on Venezuelan President

Nestor Reverol - Government of Venezuela

16 CBNW 2019/02

Drones for CBRN

Venezuelan troops flee from drone explosions after an attempted assassination of President Maduro.

The landing of a small radioactive source on the Japanese prime minister’s office on 22 April 2015 exemplified this. The small drone containing traces of radiation (not deliberately added) was 50 cm in diameter and had four propellers, carrying a small camera and a plastic bottle with unidentified contents inside. Iraqi intelligence is said to have interdicted an al-Qaeda plot in 2013 that involved the use of remotely controlled aircraft to disperse CWAs, including sarin gas and mustard agent. Drones could be adapted to disperse agents in a manner similar to crop-dusting. UAVs targeting chemical and nuclear facilities overrides the terrorists’ need to acquire CBRN materials to manufacture a CBRN weapon. Payloads are a potential threat. If they are not checked at each end and landing along a longer route, transportation of

DRONES Countering the drones

“Terrorist groups could easily export their battlefield experiences to use weaponized unmanned aircraft systems outside conflict zones.” FBI DIRECTOR CHRISTOPHER A. WRAY

Electronic countermeasures (ECM) against UAVs and drone swarms are burgeoning technologies. And as with any system relying on comms software, swarms may also be vulnerable to hacking or other interference with their signals. And as with many novel technologies, the offensive potential of drones as a cheap and adaptable means of weapons delivery currently outweigh the more costly countermeasures. As T.X. Hammes said in War on the Rocks, the military are planning for “small, smart and cheap platforms.” Terrorists are very likely to do the same. ❚❙



A DJI Phantom quadcopter UAV for commercial and recreational aerial photography hovers over a Swiss mountain area.

ordinary commodities may be used for spreading lethal or other illegal material. The drone can enable precise target identification and, hence, precise strikes. Technology transfer to terrorists may include multiple drone formations, dubbed ‘swarms’ – used primarily by the US, UK and other militaries – in theory, to overwhelm air defences. In swarm formation drones have added an extra, very plausible, delivery system to drop chemicals and other materials onto crowds of civilians and high-profile venues. As each swarm drone can be programmed to communicate with the others, they can avoid potential countermeasures. They can also act as decoys, tricking air defences into attacking them instead of other platforms. As a means of area denial – the original military use of CW – a concerted attack by drones carrying chemical or biological warfare agents or TICs (toxic industrial chemicals) would force the defence to don PPE, which hinders mobility. How the drones would carry these payloads is not clear, and their efficacy to do harm would encounter several variables. Precipitation, wind, humidity, and differing vegetation reduce CWA efficacy. However, environmental sensors on the drones could enhance the reliability of the payload to be discharged.

Payloads are many and varied. Here Connect Robotics deliver food in the mountains of Portugal.


Back in 2013 the DHL parcel service subsidiary of Deutsche Post AG tested ‘microdrones md4-1000’ for delivery of medicines.


CBNW 2019/02 17

DRONES UAV over water at sunset – assuaging the myth that drones can only be used over land.

After Gatwick:

©Jakob Owens (Public Domain)


Peter Lashbrook asks whether electronic countermeasures against UAVs is effective or irrelevant

The prevalence of IEDs in Afghanistan and Iraq, combined with their simplicity, resulted in these devices being difficult to detect and extremely deadly. During these campaigns unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs – ‘drones’) were also deployed against Coalition forces in some of their crudest forms


n the UK, when we think of a ‘drone’ we think of the commercially available units from electronics outlets, or professional photography units. Many of these drones use remote control via a dedicated remote, or a smartphone application. As this often requires a radio or wireless connection of some sort, electronic countermeasures (ECM) can often be deployed and deny UAVs the ability to operate in an area. However, we have limited capability to detect drones as many fly lower than the current technology is capable of detecting. The definition of a UAV is sketchy – with some sources citing a method of power as the distinction, while others suggest anything unmanned and flying is a UAV. The definition is unimportant, whether UAV, drone or balsa wood glider. It’s their potential to disrupt or cause damage that is a the common factor.

18 CBNW 2019/02

Exploding UAVs

The IED UAVs used in Afghanistan and Iraq included the makings of an IED, fixed to or built into the frame of the UAV, detonating on impact or with a timer. They were often constructed from balsa wood or simple materials, rigged with explosives and often with no propulsion – effectively a glider. They were launched from simple catapult systems or simply ‘thrown’ into the air. These crude devices were by no means accurate, as they could not be controlled mid-flight, but their  crudeness made them a deadly,

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DRONES A commercially available UAV carries a camera close-up at sunset. ©Sorasak (Public Domain)

THE GATWICK INCIDENT In December 2018, Gatwick Airport in the UK suffered the first reported major disruption to a transport hub through the use of a drone/UAV. While facts about the type of device used at Gatwick remain conflicted, it appears clear the intended cause was mass disruption – which was achieved. Gatwick is an example of a location where current ECM solutions are difficult to deploy, as their effect is widespread. indiscriminate aerial IED platform against which traditional defences cannot be used.

Jamming the drones

ECM is the means by which to disrupt or confuse a radar, sonar or other system such as infrared or laser. Communications ECM includes radio frequency (RF) and electromagnetic (EM) interruption along with other forms of ‘jamming’. This form of ECM is designed to degrade the link between the two points rendering the connection useless – and therefore the remote device is no longer controllable or returns to source. Communication ECM has an effective radius or is aimed directly at the device, where an operator wants to isolate the RF link and prevent communication with the device.

Evading ECM

Creating uncontrolled drones of such simple design not only makes them impervious to ECM products but also low cost and easily concealed. This is due to their being almost undetectable by most scanning and ECM systems, thanks to their low EM signature. Drones which follow waypoints or pre-programmed routes are also being deployed increasingly often. These are ‘single-mission’ drones intended to complete a task and then simply run out of power or land. While some of these drones have rudimentary programming to enable GPS or navigation aids, sophisticated shielding designs to limit or prevent ECM interruption are openly available online.

©Caleb Woods (Public Domain)

20 CBNW 2019/02

Directing the funding

In the wake of Gatwick, multi-millionpound funding has been offered by the UK Government to develop suitable anti-drone technology. Much of the attention focuses on pinpointing ECM to a specific drone – where current technology blankets an area or region. Blanketing an area with ECM is preferable where drone swarms or multiple units are deployed against a target. However, as explained previously, this only works where the UAV is sophisticated enough to include electronics in the first place. The funding may be better allocated to carry out research into detection rather than ECM. Detecting these small, light, low-signature UAVs is the real cause of concern. Being able to detect, pinpoint the location, or track movement is certainly of greater benefit than throwing up ECM – which will not affect a number of the most effective UAVs. ©Samuel Zeller (Public Domain)

Some critical infrastructure uses radar and other EM detection mounted on towers.

This UAV was observed hovering in an urban area.

DRONES Lightweight collapsible drone with controller and carry case.

©Samuel Schwendener (Public Domain)

©90 angle (Public Domain)

UAV operator using mobile phone and application linked to remote control.

©Hédi Benyounes (Public Domain)

equipment and assistance from other forces, including Cambridge and Essex. In addition to this, the estimated cost to airlines during the 36-hour lock down exceeded £50 million. The international press coverage highlighted how unprepared the UK and many nations are in terms of UAVs and detection, deterrence and management of such a scenario. Gatwick was a sharp wake-up call for the authorities. However, airports are not the only, or even the most lucrative, target. Large sporting events and public gatherings offer even greater opportunity for disruption, terror or harm. An English Premier League football match can attract 40,000 fans. In the US, assessments have been carried out to understand the impact of drones at American Football games, with 256 events in the 2019 calendar each attracting up to 75,000 fans. The danger of drones or any unmanned aerial vehicle hinges on our concentrating efforts on developing ECM and throw-up an ECM curtain around critical infrastructure such as airports, but the method of delivery will simply go back to basics. Floating an explosive-laden balloon over a security post in Israel is such an example. So, how will ECM be effective against drones or other UAVs? Available products include nets, directed pulses of energy, and widespread ECM with a range of up to 9 km. However, many of these would be useless against simple, uncontrolled UAVs and swarm scenarios. These drones are not externally controlled, neither do they contain shielding to prevent ECMs having any effect. Furthermore, the effect of widespread ECM can cause other RF and EM-sensitive products and services to fail or act erratically. Drones and UAVs are an increasing security threat. This is not new – unmanned platforms have been deployed against security forces overseas for decades. The real danger is focusing too greatly on developing complicated ECM platforms while simpler UAVs remain highly effective. zy

Airborne CBRNE

Barbed wire is part of conventional perimeter security installed around a property.

Wake-up call

Peter Lashbrook is the founder of PELA Systems and designer of the Patented PELAmesh range. PELA Systems design and manufacture remote scene assessment and sensor integration platforms for field deployment and infrastructure applications worldwide.

Continuing to focus on Gatwick, what if the drones had a more sinister purpose, such as carrying explosives or CBRN agents? What if the drones were a distraction against a terror attack against the airport terminals and the thousands of people now stranded within? Syria, Israel and Pakistan have all recorded sightings or uses of uncontrolled drones or UAVs. Those deployed in Syria against the population are thought to have involved chemical agents, making these, in effect, CBRN drones. The technology in commercially available drones is improving each month. The payload capacity is increasing, which widens the scope of deployment from parcel delivery to deployment of sarin onto thousands of people. The direct cost on policing the Gatwick incidents has been reported as £419,000. This includes overtime, specialist

CBNW 2019/02 21


You can’t fight if you can’t hear

Prof. David Crouch looks at the many challenges of 21st-century military operations in complex CBRNe environments Subterranean CBRNe scenario. All photos ©3M

22 CBNW 2019/02

PROTECTION From a military perspective, a CBRN environment not only includes the actual CBRNe threats and hazards but also potential effects on ongoing defence operations. These effects can be created through the intentional or unintentional release of CBRNe materials in the operational environment (OE)


he OE is the combination of the conditions, circumstances and influences that will determine the use of military forces, and help a unit commander make decisions. What type of operational environment the force element is operating in can be a very complex equation where CBRNe agents are also a consideration. For example, are we operating in a hostile, permissive or uncertain CBRNe environment? Is the

confined spaces, where there is not enough oxygen in the air to support life. These could include covert CBRNe weapon storage facilities or underground terrorist bunkers.

Selecting RPE

When it comes to selecting Respiratory Protection Equipment (RPE) for such challenging environments, one size most certainly does not fit all. IPE/RPE solutions must therefore be flexible

bles, including CBRN clothing. Combined with the urgency and need for rapid action, should such CBRN agents be encountered on the battlefield the importance of effective communication during such an event, including identification of challenges and possible pitfalls before crises occur, goes without saying. Therefore, nations such as the US have placed increasingly significant importance on information superiority as key to prevailing in conflicts against

Typical noisy operational environments.

type of terrain a complex or challenging one, such as urban, subterranean or desert terrain? From an Individual Protective Equipment (IPE) perspective, the modern soldier faces unique risks in operating in environments with unknown CBRN contagions. Although their IPE ensemble usually reflects a very high level of protection, including state-of-the-art CBRN respiratory protection, not all military respirators are effective in, say,

enough to allow for military operations in all types of terrain and climatic conditions. Modern respirators such as the General Service Respirator–Evolution Specialist (GSReS) from 3M can cover a wide range of Concept of Operations (CONOPS) and threat scenarios, providing both positive and negative pressure capabilities within the single respirator face piece. As a system it is also designed to be worn with a range of IPE ensem-

other forces throughout the world. Even under challenging CBRNe conditions, ‘manoeuvre’ will still be an essential element of combat power. Improving ’Operational Tempo’ in such hostile and restrictive CBRNe operating environments can only be achieved through enhanced shared situational awareness.

Military aid to civil power

For example, the deliberate release of

CBNW 2019/02 23


Physical equipment burden placed on modern soldiers.

Confined space CBRNe environments.

Novichok nerve agent in Salisbury, UK, in March 2018 not only resulted in a human fatality and contamination of significant areas of land and infrastructure, but also required defence forces to operate under a ’Military aid to the civil power’ (MACP)-type footing in the UK. The required dynamic and joint approach by the defence forces and other national response agencies has to be delivered in an effective and timely manner during such events. Therefore, a domain where information exchange is 24 CBNW 2019/02

critical to mission success needs to include improved end-to-end shared situational awareness – from individual soldiers all the way up to command HQ level.

IPE and communication

However, the high levels of protection necessary to protect the modern soldier in an ever-changing CBRNe environment can potentially result in a combined IPE ensemble that is burdensome and poorly integrated with other mission-critical

equipment. Or it may inhibit individual communications with the outside world. For example, full facepiece respirators can interfere with visual cues when speaking and listening. It therefore becomes more difficult not only to recognise what is said, but also who is saying it. Distance and intelligibility are interrelated. Longer distances between communicating sections can result in less intelligibility. This latter facet is significant when one considers the size of operational safe distances utilised in military operations. This especially applies to subterranean environments, where safe cordons of up to 300-500 metres could be typical for some decontamination operations. Command and control is difficult in any operation encompassing CBRNe agents, particularly built-up areas, and periods of limited visibility increase this difficulty. Unless designed correctly, a soldier’s IPE ensemble may inhibit personal communications and this needs to be considered before carrying out any CBRN hazard management activities. You can’t fight if you can’t hear.

Enhancing comms

Special communication equipment is available from leading RPE manufacturers and some respirators


Communications system in a modern CBRN respirator (GSReS): speech diaphragm and voice projection unit.

Effective integration of modern RPE and communications systems.

Integration into a secure radio-communications network can be achieved through the addition of dynamic or electret microphone and ‘Push to Talk’ or radio array, with connection to a Peltorbased communications headset from 3M. Dedicated communications systems such as the PELTOR COMTAC Tactical Communication Headsets from 3M have the added advantage of an environmental listening feature (level dependent functionality) for auditory situational awareness and face-to-face communications. Environmental Listening is a means of allowing low-level sounds to bypass the individual hearing protection, while still protecting against the harmful peak sound pressure levels likely to be encountered by defence forces in a kinetic environment. Sound amplification allows the user to hear low-level sounds, including range commands and conversation. Such considerations demonstrate how important holistic IPE selection is when preparing for counter-CBRNe operations.

Shifting spectrum

While the above RPE solutions were originally intended to meet Cold War threats, the 21st-century soldier is now faced with an ever-shifting CBRNe threat spectrum. Modern respirators such as the GSReS have evolved accordingly and are now capable of not only delivering their primary life-saving function, but also act as a common architecture platform with which to integrate other mission-critical infrastructure, such as communications systems and other IPE. ❚❙

ABOUT 3M 21st-century common architecture RPE platform.

now have speech diaphragms incorporated into the mask or are made of materials that enhance speech transmission. For example, the speech diaphragm incorporated within the GSReS is situated directly in front of the wearer’s mouth and is designed to minimise speech attenuation.

Through its unique design, the communication system on a modern respirator such as the GSReS can be augmented via a Voice Projection Unit, which simply clips onto the respirator’s internal speech diaphragm and amplifies the speaker’s voice, enabling it to be heard at distance more clearly.

With $33 billion in sales, 3M has 93,000 employees with the UK home to one of the largest 3M subsidiaries outside the USA, employing 2,750 people across 17 locations, including nine manufacturing sites. Products manufactured in the UK include coated abrasives, personal safety equipment, adhesive tapes, industrial microbiology products and drug delivery systems.

David Crouch is Global Subject Matter Expert in Defence and Public Safety for science-based technology company 3M. As a professional chemist with more than 25 years’ experience in the fields of materials science and CBRN protection he is also a visiting professor at the UK Defence Academy (Cranfield University – Defence and Security). 26 CBNW 2019/02


Trusted partners. Innovative solutions. A safer world. Finding the right protective gear can be a challenge. That’s why we’re proud to welcome the knowledgeable people and reliable products of Scott Safety to the 3M team. Together, we’ll build on Scott Safety’s legacy of trusted protection with enhanced technology, so your team can keep getting the job done and keep coming back home safely.


3M Science. Applied to life.™

RESPONSE From French battlefield surgeon Dominique Jean Larrey’s ambulance volante to current standards and practices, the objective has always been to bring rapid and life-saving medical care to the point of injury or illness for the wounded or sick warrior and to transport the casualty

The 388th Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear Company train in a Mass Casualty Decontamination exercise at Fort McCoy and Volk Field, Wis., May 2015.

to a higher echelon of care

Frank G. Rando explains the vital role of CBRN medical capabilities in battlefield casualty care



he prime goal is an expedient return of combatants to the battlefield. In the traditional battlespace, traumatic injuries generated by conventional munitions and weaponry are addressed by self-care, buddy care, combat life-saver care and the combat medic or corpsman.

Combined injuries in theatre

Emergency medical providers, tactical and military medics and healthcare professionals may have to render care in austere, hostile and front-line operational settings due to non-conventional threats or a combined, mixed-casualty load requiring interventions for CBRN exposures and traumatic injuries. As conventional armaments and munitions inflict injuries as well as CBRN agents, medical and healthcare assets must be prepared to provide rapid clinical interventions at the point of exposure and injury – and healthcare support throughout the continuum of care. Traditionally, in combat a military CBRN or HazMat casualty would undergo immediate decontamination in the Hot Zone or its periphery. Immediate decontamination can mean the difference between minor and significant health effects from agent exposure. 28 CBNW 2019/02

Sensitive site operations

Certain assets of the international military Special Operations community have been tasked with sensitive site exploitation missions (SSE) and other activities associated with Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) and counter-proliferation. Specialised CBRN reconnaissance, decommissioning and threat neutralisation and nonproliferation teams may also be involved in military and related operations such as treaty verification activities, such as for the OPCW. Also, Special Operations and conventional military forces may deploy a CBRN weapon during a tactical or strategic strike or venture into a disaster zone involving chemical or radiological materials. These could be released following a conventional military strike or industrial accident – or from a hazardous waste facility or clandestine CBRN laboratory.

Battlefield care

These individuals are trained in Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC). This provides evidence-based, life-saving techniques, tactics and strategies for delivering high-quality, battlefield trauma care and reducing combat deaths without degrading mission completion.

TCCC was originally designed and developed in the mid-1990s for the Special Operations medical community. Its objectives remain the same: to treat injured combatants; limit the risk of further casualties; and achieve mission success. TCCC emphasises phases of care as care under fire, tactical field care and tactical evacuation care (TACEVAC). As asymmetric warfare, political violence and terrorism involve threat agents such as chemical warfare agents (CWAs), improvised chemical devices (ICDs) and toxic industrial chemicals and materials (TICs/TIMs), the principles and concepts of TCCC had to be modified to meet the challenges of treating injured and exposed casualties. Operators must be able to apply TCCC principles to medical treatment of exposed casualties utilising a hybridised approach. Medical readiness in support of CBRN responses require extensive preventive medicine, post-exposure and downrange trauma threat assessment and preparedness.

Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (TECC)

TECC is the civilian equivalent of TCCC. It is extrapolated and adapted to civilian tactical medical response such as Joint

RESPONSE ©US Army/Catherine Threat

THREE TYPES OF CASUALTIES  Standard battlefield traumatic injuries  Poisoning/toxicity  Combined traumatic injury & poisoning/toxicity The question must be asked: what is killing the patient, NOW? A casualty with an arterial bleed to the femoral artery can exsanguinate in three minutes. Some CWAs and especially, BWAs and radiological exposures have, however, a delayed onset – depending on agent characteristics, toxicity, virulence, exposure time/rate, airborne concentration, PPE and other factors. Nerve agents and cyanide can kill a casualty quickly. Antidote administration is essential!

in the trenches Marines of Regimental Combat Team 5 transport a non-ambulatory patient via litter outside Fallujah, Iraq in 2006.

TOXIDROMES The following toxidromes need to be recognised:  Irritant gas – ammonia, chlorine, phosgene: airway/breathing effects such as airway obstruction or non-cardiogenic pulmonary oedema  Simple or systemic asphyxiant – displace atmospheric oxygen (e.g. inert gases) or inhibit oxygen transport (carbon monoxide) or cellular/ mitochondrial oxygen utilization: cyanide, azides, hydrogen sulphide  Corrosive – vesicants/blister agents: sulphur mustard, Lewisite, strong acids and bases- chemical burns, liquefactive or coagulative necrosis  Cholinergic – organophosphate pesticides: Malathion and militarised nerve agents sarin, soman, tabun, VX, Novichok – severe bradycardia, bronchorrhoea, bronchoconstriction, seizures, miosis (pinpoint pupils).

Rescue Task Forces (RTFs). These integrate law enforcement for threat neutralisation and force protection with emergency medical/fire service personnel to conduct rapid assessments, life-saving interventions and tactical extractions in tactical operations. Both military and

civilian medical responders can provide the following in the CBRN Hot Zone: ● Medical reconnaissance ● Rapid assessment/triage ● Life-saving trauma interventions: haemorrhage control/tourniquet application

Wikipedia/Patrick Smith

Antidotes. Training and equipping Special Operations Forces (SOF) and other assets to execute CBRN missions with medical treatment skills and mission-specific material requires threat-specific planning for the likes of anthrax, organophosphate  ●

CBNW 2019/02 29

RESPONSE ©University of California, Irvine

The US Army believes the continuous lactate monitor, a prototype of which is shown here and features a wearable, subcutaneous microsensor designed to detect lactic acid levels, will be essential in battlefield medicine.

neurotoxicants, ionising radiation and contaminated traumatic injuries.

SOF-CBRN Direct Action Mission

As part of a non-combatant evacuation operation (NEO), SOF elements are sent to evacuate US citizens from a remote location in the vicinity of a chemical plant. Local nationals set the facility ablaze, spreading toxicants over the area, and possibly contaminating American citizens. The JSOTF (Joint Special Operations Task Force) Commander must contend with the mission complications of contamination by TIMs, SOF aircraft entering contaminated areas to pick up American citizens who have no CBRN PPE, and resultant casualties.

Casualty removal

Casualty removal from the contaminated environment to terminate further exposure or hazards such as fire or explosion hazards is critical, if feasible. Active shooters and enemy combatants create a direct care-under-fire situation and hinder medical and rescue operations. Fire superiority and threat suppression rule over medical treatment – rescue operations: good medicine may be bad tactics. Rapid assessment and life-saving interventions, such as tourniquet application for severe haemorrhage and antidote administration, should commence in the Hot Zone. Casualties would then be rapidly extracted and brought to the Warm Zone for decontamination, further medical assessment and treatment, and then moved to the Cold Zone and medical treatment facility (MTF). In a CBRN event with trauma, the goals are to limit and minimise exposure and contamination, treat the immediate life threat, and administer appropriate antidotes.

Critical decontamination

One critical intervention is to rapidly commence decontamination – especially 30 CBNW 2019/02

of the skin, where liquid, droplet or aerosolised contaminants are concerned – to limit absorption and prevent cross-contamination. Ocular decontamination – rapid and continuous flushing of the eyes – is also vital as contaminants can be absorbed via the eyes and associated mucous membranes (conjunctiva). Vapour exposures do not require skin decontamination, but vapours may be entrapped in clothing. Removal of clothing will mitigate entrapped vapours. Volatile vapours tend to off-gas in the ambient air. For example, sarin has a volatility of 21, 900 mg/cu m at 25°C (volatile). Immediate decontamination can mean the difference between minor and significant health effects from agent exposure. A rapid cut-out procedure should be used to remove contaminated clothing. The protective M40 mask or other respiratory protection should not be removed in the Hot Zone, but should be one of the last items to be removed in decontamination operations.

Wounds must be decontaminated and treated surgically using standard irrigation and debridement. In extremis, the medic can wipe a wound with Kerlix or similar material, then perform wound packing and bandaging. Treatment of trauma casualties presenting with life threats – severe haemorrhage, airway compromise, tension pneumothorax – must not be delayed. ❚❙

Point of injury/hot zone  Massive haemorrhage/mask check  Airway, administer antidotes  Respirations, rapid spot decontamination (RSDL)

Emergency Patient Decontamination Station (’Dirty’ Casualty Collection Point)  Circulation, administer countermeasures (IV drips)  Hypothermia, head wound  Extraction/evacuation


The NATO CBRN ‘CRESS’ for CBRN casualty assessment has been developed by toxicology and CBRN medical experts in UK SOF. It enables the tactical medic to quickly determine agents of concern, conduct triage, and recognise symptoms.

MEDEVAC at Tactical Combat Casualty Care training at Camp Buehring, Kuwait in February 2016.

C – Consciousness – unconscious, convulsing, altered? R – Respirations – present, laboured, or absent? E – Eyes – pupil size, reactivity to light? S – Secretions – absent, normal, increased? S – Skin – diaphoretic, cyanotic, dry, hot? US Army/Staff Sgt. Ian M. Kummer

In future conflicts, communication channels and evacuation routes will be contested and casualty care will be increasingly needed on the battlefield.

©US Army

Frank G. Rando is a national SME, trainer, and first responder with over 30 years’ experience in emergency management, tactical, disaster and special operations medicine, public safety, and counterterrorism.


For more visit www.observis.fi Observis Oy Finland Jääkärinkatu 29, 50100 Mikkeli

Observis Oy Middle East Al Muroor Road, Dhafeer Street - Abu Dhabi - UAE


Real-time data feeds in automatically from the field during missions.


for everyone All photos ŠObservis Oy

Timo Paakki presents a 21st-century upgrade of CBRNe sensors

32 CBNW 2019/02

DETECTION NETWORKS Modern command and control (C2) systems are able to provide real-time situational awareness through the integration of a plethora of data sources and systems: sensors, detectors or other devices or software. How does this have a bearing on CBRNe connectivity as we proceed headlong into the Internet of Things?


he unimaginably fast development and miniaturisation of wireless networking technologies has made the world mobile in only a couple of decades. The growing interconnectivity of devices and systems is affecting our everyday lives at breathtaking speed.

Legacy hardware falls short

Modern C2 (Command and Control) systems are able to provide real-time

situational awareness through the integration of a plethora of various data sources and systems such as sensors, detectors or other devices or software. However, since the advances in technology sometimes overtake the steady protocols of public procurement, there exists a rather large quantity of perfectly functioning devices in service lacking the networking features appreciated and demanded these days. This inadequacy naturally deteriorates

their tactical value in terms of modern situational-awareness C2systems. In addition to networking devices and sensors carried by larger assets such as vehicles and vessels, networking the actual field personnel and lighter assets would create a real-time mobile sensor network capable of providing a fullspectrum situational awareness. An instant deployment of an array of networked handheld detection devices may provide the operational command with a tactical advantage. These capabilities are becoming increasingly essential in ensuring the operability and survivability of assets in the current multidimensional threat scenarios.


Unfortunately, facilitating a fully


Left: Every field operative becomes a sensor. Below: Sensor fusion on all assets can provide full-spectrum situational awareness.

CBNW 2019/02 33


Left: Personnel and device statuses visualised. Virtually any sensor or device can be interconnected for producing the operational picture. Bottom left: Visualised situational awareness on a modern C2 software platform.

everyone carry a PRC-77 and IBM PC with external power source would have not been a good idea in so many ways. It just would not have made sense even to try to turn each and every member of the personnel into a walking detector or comparable data source of any kind.

Shortcomings of ‘manual data’

networked C2 system capable of providing a full-spectrum situational awareness may require substantial replacement investments. Typically, the latest device versions equipped with adequate wireless networking capabilities must be procured to replace the existing equipment in stock. Provided, of course, that such devices or device versions are available for purchase. This seems to be the case especially in the field of handheld CBRNe detectors and sensors. Most of the devices in service are built based on the requirements from the 1980s or 1990s. Naturally, the focus of product design was, and still is, in detection performance, reliability and operability in field conditions. After all, they are called ‘detectors’ for a reason. The idea of all-encompassing, real-time networks was not relevant back then, mainly as the technology available was too expensive and bulky. Having 34 CBNW 2019/02

Then again, when it comes to CBRNe threats in the theatre or any other operational environment, quick detection of – for example, nerve gas followed by immediate alarming of the force fielded – is imperative in order to take the correct protective measures. In situations like this, the tactical significance of actual real-time distribution of information for the operations command is undeniable. The traditional method of crying “GAS-GAS-GAS!” and reporting the threat over the radio produces a substantial delay in the delivery and distribution of the information. Of course, this is the problem with any manually delivered information contributing to situational awareness. Please note that voice-over radio is a manual process as such and intrinsically prone to error and delay. The importance of automatically collected undelayed information is obvious when there is an airborne threat such as chemical discharge or a cloud of radioactive dust. Only efficiently networked automatic systems are able to provide instantaneous situational awareness – by combining data from various sources and visualising, for example, a plume dispersion model on a map interface.


Converting the existing inventory of handheld detection devices into a mobile sensor network capable of delivering environmental status information to a command centre in real time can be an arduous task. Well, it actually is an arduous task. Choosing to replace the entire stock of devices is a lot of work, takes a lot of time and costs a lot of money. In the end you will have the latest detectors, of course, but you still have to figure out what to do with the old devices. Also, you’re stuck with the networking technology of your new devices for the next 20 years or so. And we have seen what can happen to technology within only two decades.

DETECTION NETWORKS Luckily, the vast majority of the detection equipment ever delivered carries some sort of physical interface enabling it to communicate with the rest of the world. Typically, it is a serial port of some sort – RS-232, for example. In most cases, connecting to the device interface and following its communication protocol the transfer of data between the device and the C2 system can be established – that is, the legacy device can be networked. This presents a huge opportunity for the various organisations operating

device – physical interface configurations, plugs and pins, and so on. However, solving these issues would result in a connection kit which would bring the legacy handheld devices into the 21st century. Since the kit would not be inbuilt to the devices, it would be easy and cost effective to replace with a version carrying the latest networking technology in any given moment of time. Creating a mobile detection network where every soldier/field operative is a sensor delivering real-time data has been technologically possible for quite a while.

Now it is becoming financially reasonable as well.

C2 for everyone

Due to the perpetual miniaturisation of electronic devices, ever-decreasing prices of components, and the latest networking technologies, comprehensive C2 systems are becoming available to anyone in the need for real-time situational awareness. Roughly at least 80% of the legacy detectors still in service can be networked with a suitable kit at a fraction of the cost of a new device. Add a suitable software system, for example the ObSAS situational awareness software system from Observis – and you have a fully functioning C2 system with all your compatible hardware connected, creating a true mobile sensor network. Naturally, the kit would enable connecting the devices with any compatible software system in service – as long as there is an interface provided by the software manufacturer. Deploying ad-hoc sensor networks, knowing exact locations and statuses of assets, and being able to make well-informed fast decisions based on real-time situational awareness is going to be affordable and thus available to practically anyone. Soon. zy

Left: Dispersion model of an airborne dangerous substance displayed at the command centre. Below: The good old PRC-77 together with IBM PC: not really an optimal solution to be carried around.

with legacy equipment and looking for ways to modernise their operational capability with ever-diminishing budgets.

Mobile sensor networks

What actually is required is a piece of intermediating hardware that physically connects to the device and has the networking capability to deliver the device output to a larger system. With freely available COTS (Commercial Off The Shelf) components, this can already be achieved at least in POC (Proof Of Concept) level. Of course, there would be some technical details to be addressed, such as the communication protocols of each

Timo Paakki is Chief Sales Officer at Observis Oy. He has been working in international sales and business development since 1997 and in the CBRNe field since 2007. Prior to his current position he was the Area Manager responsible of Asia Pacific region at Environics Oy until 2012. CBNW 2019/02 35


Joining the dots Col (Retd) James Hall opens up the case for networking CBRNe detection systems Back in 2017 two retired servicemen with no real CBRNe experience but long years spent commanding troops asked over a cup of coffee what we thought was a simple question. Why are most CBRNe detection instruments not designed for the network?


rue, most instruments have a cable connector. This is necessary to programme their firmware. Increasingly manufacturers, mainly of radiological instruments, are planning to network sensors of the same type. But none, so far as we knew, was ready to produce an all-source digital CBRNe picture using real-time information.

Moving data to expert people allows fast and expert technical support.

A recognised picture

All photos © Bruker Detection Image of connecting dots superimposed on main image: © freepik

36 CBNW 2019/02

The availability of a CBRNe Recognised Picture should be a natural part of any operation. Decision makers, civil or military, need the most up-to-date and accurate information possible. A command picture of this sort shows where sensors are and allows the viewer to drill down to the underlying data. What spectra is the instrument recording? Is it working properly? Has it been maintained correctly? What training has its operator received? With such


immediate information commanders make better, faster decisions – and that saves lives. At the moment such a picture scarcely exists, even among the NATO militaries. There are automated systems: one thinks of Bruhn NewTech’s widely used software, but these are complex and designed to mesh into hierarchical military structures. Top: SafeZone CBRNe command and control software by Bruhn Newtech. Right: Complex environments present challenges to communications and data flow. Below: Giving data value by enabling faster, better decisions will save lives.

security arena this would probably have been fixed years ago but, as the professionals involved will recognise, outsiders are frightened of CBRNe and often ignore the problem rather than invest in it.

Operational benefits

Moreover, the instruments themselves were never designed to be connected. Not only do the sensors of different manufacturers lack compatibility, but so do those from a single producer. In consequence, the addition of any new instrument requires extra software to be developed before it can be added to the picture. Outside the military, there is today no decision maker who can claim to have access to a single, near real-time, picture of his CBRNe operations. In any other Right: Networks will allow the immediate and secure capture of forensic evidence.

38 CBNW 2019/02

What could be done, were our sensors properly digitised, to improve our operational performance? First, we could bring data to commanders as soon as it is available. No longer would we require the operator with an alarm to make a voice call. Nor, with the addition of GPS, would we need to work so hard to identify their location. Antiquated solutions still widely used could be rapidly retired. Second, we could look into our sensors and see, behind the front-end data most provide, the detailed spectrum being recorded by the sensor. This is a fantastic capability, not least because many instruments may not recognise a threat that they can actually see. Few chemical sensors would have spotted Novichok in Salisbury because, among other reasons, the threat was not in the instrument library. The availability of raw data from the sensor would allow rapid analysis to be made by a remote

DETECTION NETWORKS specialist with access to critical information. Third, we could examine the instrument’s maintenance status. This has the potential to wipe away many false alarms that can so threaten the value of an operational instrument. Therefore, in every conceivable way a recognised CBRNe picture would enhance the ability of decision-makers to save lives. But there are still more advantages.

Networking sensor data

Once data from a sensor is networked it can be reproduced anywhere it is needed. Most operational decision makers are not CBRNe experts and the necessary advisers are rare and expensive. By taking data to the expert it is possible to provide remote, rapid and highly specialised support to generalists managing the incident. Operational, technical and scientific advisers can be quickly on hand, either from national organisations or, for nations and commercial clients without access to that level of knowledge, from commercial specialists. An additional value of the network will be in its ability to capture and record data, both for forensic use – and to support intelligence and criminal investigations.

Training and fleet management

Two other areas of benefit can be foreseen. First, the opportunities for training increase exponentially. With the ability remotely to control an instrument comes the capacity to use teaching and training scenarios for individual operators and command teams. The second area is the enhancement to managing the fleet of instruments. Maintenance procedures can be overseen on-line, routine work can be checked, repairs planned and software updates conducted. This has the potential to increase the availability of instruments (often a major problem) and reduce the overall cost of logistics. Of course, the truth is that the current fleet of sensors on the market cannot do all of this. Nearly all can be connected to a network and nearly all can contribute, to some extent, to situational understanding. Very few, however, have the software required to contribute fully to the logistic and training functions we envision. The next generation of instruments must be designed for this. Manufacturers that fail to identify the requirement will have increasing difficulty in meeting future market expectations.

The smart future

Where does this opportunity lead the CBRNe industry? We think, into very new territory. Left: Detecting but not communicating with commanders.

The threat has always been regarded with fear and loathing by outsiders. The world’s capacity to respond has been limited by this reticence and by the complexity and expense involved. Some things will remain true. The ability to sense threats will always require sophisticated technology. The sheer number of agents available means that the technical issues of recognising, identifying and managing them will remain the province of specialists. The limitations of sensing technology and the scarcity of knowledge will mean that some costs will always be high. On the other hand, some things are changing. The cost of existing technology will fall as manufacturing processes and competition have their effect. New technologies will appear, not least the ability to analyse mass data inputs from numerous, cheaper and simpler sensors. In a world increasingly dominated by the Internet of Things and in societies adopting ‘smart cities’ thinking, CBRNe will change. Networked instruments will allow whole new uses of sensors at relatively manageable prices. New solutions will allow threats to be mitigated that were once simply too complex and expensive to manage. We should expect to see growing use of sensors and networks in civil environments. While we would never argue that CBRNe sensors will become as common as smoke detectors, we must recognise that they will increasingly be used in high-risk public spaces. The political pressures to manage the threat will increase, and legislative action to enforce protective measures is already a reality around the world.

Change saves lives

In short, the traditional world of CBRNe will move on. Of course, the presence of military and government expertise will remain vital, but the assets will become more common and public expectation of protection will rise. This will be expensive, but it is necessary. The power of the network offers the chance to take the mass data provided by sensors, and the expertise of specialists, and to create actionable information for decision-makers. Security responses will be quicker and better informed; lives will be saved. ❚❙

Colonel (Retd) James Hall left the British Army in 2013. With his business partner, Lothar Pelz of Pelz Consulting, he conceived CBRNet recently launched by Bruker Detection, in partnership with Bruhn Newtech and Cubic Mission Solutions. CBNW 2019/02 39



40 years and counting Col (retd) Zyg Dembek asks if lessons have been learned from the 1979 anthrax outbreak from a Soviet facility

Aerial view of Yekaterinberg, Russia ©Wikimedia Creative Commons

During April and May 1979, a large anthrax epidemic occurred in the Soviet city of Sverdlovsk (now Yekaterinberg, Russia), located about 1,392 km east of Moscow. By early 1980, reports in the Western press began to appear about this unusual outbreak, which Soviet Union Fraternity of People’s Emblem, Kiev.

40 CBNW 2019/02

Soviet authorities claimed was the result of the victims Photo courtesy of the author

having eaten tainted meat from diseased animals



he Soviet news agency TASS stated that there had been “a natural outbreak of anthrax among domestic animals” and that “cases of skin and intestinal forms of anthrax were reported in people, because dressing of animals was sometimes conducted without observing rules established by veterinary inspections.”

health protective measures that would not have been used had the epidemic’s cause been a foodborne source. These included placing the bodies of victims into coffins with chlorinated lime and burying them in a separate portion of the city’s cemetery, using fire trucks to wash building exteriors and trees in the city, paving previously unpaved roads, and shooting stray dogs. None of these measures would normally be considered practical had deaths occurred due to eating contaminated meat. Besides, human anthrax is not contagious, nor was there evidence of any person-to-person transmission. Other actions taken by health authorities in Sverdlovsk included dispensing antibiotics to all family members of anthrax cases and providing anthrax vaccinations to more than 47,000 residents.

A bio-attack?

Eventually it was learned that there were at least 96 cases of human anthrax, with 66 deaths. Given the nature and size of the outbreak, this event aroused media attention. Controversy arose as to whether it had been an intentional or accidental event caused by a biological weapon (BW), or a naturally occurring event. Repeated requests to Soviet officials by American scientists to visit Sverdlovsk were rebuffed until 1986, after Mikhail Gorbachev came to power as the Soviet Union’s Secretary General. In that year, the eminent Harvard physician and researcher Matthew Meselson travelled to Moscow to meet and discuss the events that had occurred in Sverdlovsk in 1979 with four Russian physicians who had directly responded to that anthrax outbreak. In 1988, two of the Russian physicians visited the US to present their medical findings from Sverdlovsk outbreak victims. While a plausible case was made for an anthrax outbreak having occurred from foodborne anthrax transmission, many questions remained unanswered.

Inhalation anthrax

The Soviet response

Beginning in 1990, articles appeared in the Soviet press about the Sverdlovsk outbreak. They included interviews with Russian physicians who questioned the official version of its cause. Soviet officials said that they had been developing an improved anthrax vaccine in a nearby military microbiology facility known as Compound 19, but no anthrax pathogen had been released. Boris Yeltsin, who had been the Communist Party chief of Sverdlovsk in 1979 and was a native of the region, ordered Health Ministry officials to determine the origin of the outbreak. In 1992, Yeltsin stated that “the KGB admitted that our military developments were the cause” of the epidemic. The initial response by Soviet authorities to the Sverdlovsk outbreak in 1979 was massive. They included unusual public

Brain excised from patient who succumbed to inhalation anthrax. The darkly-coloured exterior denotes haemorrhagic meningitis.

In 1993 Russian pathologists who conducted autopsies on the victims of the Sverdlovsk outbreak published the results of their medical findings. These papers revealed that the victims died from inhalational anthrax disease, which can only be contracted by inhaling airborne pathogenic spores of Bacillus anthracis. The findings of an epidemiological study conducted jointly by American and Russian authors were published in 1994. This study revealed that the only plausible explanation for the cluster of

©CDC Image Library

©CDC Image Library

42 CBNW 2019/02

This man’s left forearm exhibited a large lesion diagnosed as cutaneous anthrax caused by Bacillus anthracis. Note the characteristic dark-brown to the black-coloured eschar that covers the lesion from which the bacterium derives its name – as it resembles anthracite coal. Photographed by Georgian Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) resident, Archil Navdarashvili, while at Rustavi Hospital, Georgia, August 2012.

BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS weaponised anthrax spores and resulting deaths. Every effort was made to control panic and to keep the anthrax weapon release a secret. Soviet officials did not want leaks to the West about their BW programme. This had been established as being in violation of the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, which they the Soviet Union had signed.

Photo courtesy of the author

Learning from the epidemic

deaths in the Sverdlovsk outbreak was the inhalation of aerosolised B. anthracis spores. Further, when cases were traced to their likely geographic location during their initial exposure to B. anthracis spores, a narrow zone of cases extended downwind of Compound 19. It was further determined that the likely date of exposure to anthrax spores was 2 April 1979.

Dr. Ken Alibek former Deputy Director of Biopreparat, is pictured with the author (right) in 2001.

Alibek’s version

In his 1999 book Biohazard, Dr. Ken Alibek, former Deputy Chief of the Soviet Union’s BW production programme Biopreparat, exposed the deception of Soviet authorities concerning the events at Sverdlovsk. He describes how, on 30 March 1979, a technician in the anthrax production drying plant in Compound 19 removed a clogged filter, but did not replace it. Anthrax production then later resumed, with weaponised B. anthracis spores dispersed in an aerosol cloud onto the city of Sverdlovsk. Several hours passed before the missing filter was noticed and replaced. Alibek further described how secrecy was maintained by Soviet authorities in their response to the release of

KGB officers acting as doctors visited the family homes of the anthrax cases in Sverdlovsk, providing falsified death certificates. The measures used to control the outbreak described earlier were conducted by Soviet authorities with the knowledge that the source of the anthrax epidemic was weaponised anthrax spores released from Compound 19 into the city. Western scientists have continued to study the events from 40 years ago in Sverdlovsk, and have also worked closely with the Russian physicians and pathologists who treated patients and autopsied anthrax victims while they were kept ignorant from the actual cause of the Sverdlovsk outbreak by Soviet authorities. From these studies, much has been learned about the effects of an aerosol release of B. anthracis spores. The pathological findings from the Sverdlovsk anthrax cases have provided definitive medical protocols to define inhalational anthrax. The B. anthracis genomic sequence has been determined from autopsy samples of Sverdlovsk victims. This genomic identity can be used for forensic analysis of weaponised anthrax and for future anthrax investigations. Disease models have been created constructed using the data from the Sverdlovsk anthrax release. These have helped public health planners to determine hospital impact, medical prophylaxis needs, and other public health demands should an anthrax mass-casualty event occur. Studies from the events at Sverdlovsk may yet reveal additional information from recently developed genomic and modelling studies. All of these efforts have helped to strengthen biodefence preparedness.

Could it happen again?

Photomicrograph of Gram-positive, endospore-forming Bacillus anthracis bacteria – the pathological microorganism responsible for anthrax.

©CDC Image Library

Could a Sverdlovsk-type event ever recur? Among countries listed by the Nuclear Threat Initiative that are thought to have had (‘have’ being the key word for many of these nations) – or who currently possess – BW programmes are: Canada, China, Cuba, France, Germany, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Libya, North Korea, Russia, South Africa, Syria, the UK and the US. But state sponsorship of a BW programme that the Biological Weapons Convention seeks to prevent may now be ‘old school.’ Given the open dissemination of scientific information, advancements in modern biological science, and recent developments in synthetic biology that enable laboratory development of BW from non-weapon precursors, the financial and technical resources of a nation are no longer required to create and produce quantities of BW. With the rise of terrorist groups in the 21st century, and their seemingly endless funding sources – according to the Global Terrorism Index, the four most deadly terrorist groups received almost US$ 3 billion in 2016 – it may be just a matter of time before a terrorist group carries out a Sverdlovsk-like attack. The lessons we continue to learn from the events at Sverdlovsk 40 years ago may enable a more robust biodefence for all nations. ❚❙ Col (Ret) Zygmunt F. Dembek, PhD, MS, MPH is an epidemiologist and biochemist. He has written extensively on biodefence and has conducted international biodefence training on five continents. CBNW 2019/02 43

PROTECTION All photos ©Airboss Defense

Giles Kyser describes how to take care of first responders and medical personnel in the era of the triple threat

The ISO-POD allows patients to be moved between venues and facilities while its negative-pressure system protects medical personnel and first responders.

Protect the victim Chemical suicides, Ebola, MERS, the fentanyl opioid epidemic, terrorism, and the availability of toxic chemicals require resources to take care of the heroes who run toward danger and treat the sickest among us. It is time we ensured the capability to protect the victim and the hero exists at every level of our response capability


irBoss Defense first addressed this challenge in 2011, in response to a chemical suicide in Northern Virginia that resulted in the exposure of first responders. A stabilised victim died and ‘off-gassed’ – releasing the toxic chemicals he ingested. The first responders were exposed, and one casualty turned into multiple casualties. The leaders of those first responders came to AirBoss Defense with a challenge. AirBoss Defense engineers and manufacturing professionals combined the best of their industry-leading capability for consequence management shelters, powered air purifying respira-

44 CBNW 2019/02

tors, and filter design. With an expeditionary mindset they created a capability that protects responders and victims. The fielding of the AirBoss ISO-POD capability was fortuitous, because less than three years later a major Ebola outbreak thrust the new capability into the limelight as organisations worldwide struggled with how to respond to the challenge.

The new triple threat

Ebola reared its head again during 2018 in the Congo, killing more than 600 of 900 of people exposed – and eliciting a dedicated response from the international medical community. The crisis continues. Unfortunately,

the outbreak occurred in one of the most dangerous and ungoverned regions of the world: the Democratic Republic of the Congo, extending the distances over which victims must be transported and treated. This is the tenth Ebola outbreak in DRC since the virus was discovered in 1976. Despite significant strides in treatment and prevention, the challenges of getting victims from the point of discovery to the appropriate level of care without exposing first responders and medical professionals in the process of doing so, remains problematic because of expense, portability and effectiveness. During the first three weeks of March 2019, 83% of the cases resulted from


“As a United States Marine, I was always told to accomplish the mission and take care of your people.”

Above: When time, safety, and efficiency are critical, the ISO-POD delivers. Right: The Bellevue Hospital Infectious Disease Team is pictured after an Ebola Exercise.

– and the hero chains of transmission – all of which could have been prevented by properly isolating the victim. Any highly infectious disease results in the same constrained response as does the phenomenon of chemical suicide.

Chemical suicides

Beginning in 2008, chemical suicides increased in the US after Internet stories of such suicides in the Far East resulted in copycat instances. Five states reported chemical suicides or attempted suicides from 2011 to 2013. Most of these incidents (95.5%, n=21) occurred in enclosed areas (vehicles, hotel rooms, bathrooms, or other rooms in a house). These chemical suicide incidents affected suicide victims who died; some who attempted suicide but survived; first responders; and employees at the coroner’s offices. Of the incidents, 41% reported decontamination of victims, either on

scene, at the medical facility, or at both locations – indicating the requirement to transport victims. The resulting threat to first responders, medical professionals and transporters translated into more cautious response, cumbersome transportation challenges, and inefficient actions at the point of exposure and place of treatment.

Opioids and fentanyl

The US Drug Enforcement Agency, FBI and Departments of Justice (DOJ) and Defense (DOD) cite opioid use, the presence of fentanyl, its manufacture, the ease of its transportation and its potential weaponisation as threats to public safety. Of the 63,632 drug overdose deaths in the US in 2016, two-thirds involved an opioid. From 2015 to 2016, the largest overdose increase occurred among deaths involving synthetic opioids other than methadone, which includes illicitly manufactured fentanyl (IMF).

With these facts as a backdrop, potentially weaponised fentanyl served as a topic of discussion among DOD, DOJ, HazMat and health officials as recently as March of this year. The CDC and other organisations issued detailed guidance regarding how to protect responders and law enforcement personnel during immediate actions on the objective or point of exposure. However, little guidance on how to isolate and protect victims or isolate evidence during exploitation and transport has found its way to responders. This is largely because the capability to isolate patients and materiel does not exist in most organisations. Or those organizations have wrongly assumed transport will be done by ‘someone else.’

A glaring shortfall

Despite many advancements, many organisations only possess half a solution. Personal protective equipment  CBNW 2019/02 45


PROTECTION (PPE) provides individual protection (half a solution). But canvassing myriad organisations highlights a glaring shortfall in their ability to transport highly infectious and contaminated victims or materiel from the point of response to the next level of care or examination – equipped and prepared to accomplish the life-saving or law enforcement mission. Multiple means of transportation exist. But few, if any, possess the ability to protect responders and vehicles, while simultaneously allowing personnel to conduct the triage and life-sustaining and life-saving actions required to save the individual or exploit the evidence collected. Often, the right level of care or evidence isolation facility may be hours away – impeded by terrain, hostile territory and enemy actors, traffic congestion, or merely the tyranny of distance.

The transportation solution

The AirBoss Defense CBSP ISO-POD provides a chamber that uses negative pressure to answer this shortfall. The CBSP ISO-POD provides filtered air to the victim, in excess of the CDC’s requirement, and allows for the pass-through of medical instruments, triage equipment, IV lines and EKG lines. The negative pressure ensures contaminants remain on the inside of the

“I have to protect my people… but I have to treat the patient… and I need to do it with a capability that is compact, turn-key, and affordable.” pod. The glove ports allow life-saving or evidence collection activities to take place while the patient or materiel is being transported. The ISO-POD design includes a sleeve into which a standard backboard can be inserted – allowing the ISO-POD to be carried like a stretcher with its integrated heavy-duty handles, including straps which allow attachment to a backboard or gurney. It can operate up to eight hours on a single charge, or indefinitely with a ‘hot swap’ filter capability and plug-in power. It can transport up to 136 kg (300 lb). The AirBoss Defense CBSP ISO-POD now serves as the primary means of highly infectious disease transportation in hundreds of hospitals, Ebola intake and treatment centres, US embassies, and fire departments and first-responder organisations worldwide. In addition, AirBoss recently developed a ‘glove-box’ variant of the ISOPOD designed to assist law enforcement personnel, mail inspectors, and intelligence exploitation organisations to

isolate evidence and materiel, protect their personnel, and exploit and examine materiel efficiently and safely.

Proven and portable

The ISO-POD provides a proven, inexpensive, and portable capability. It fits in the trunk of a vehicle, in the back of an ambulance or HMMWV/JLTV (joint light tactical vehicle), under the seats in a helicopter, or in any small space of a means of transport. It can make any vehicle capable of transporting a victim or materiel without exposing the vehicle or its occupants to the contaminant or disease. The AirBoss Defense ISO-POD shortens response and transport time. It gets the patient or materiel where they need to be more speedily and safely, and has a proven capability affordable to every first-response organisation. In short, this device assists the best of our responders and medical professionals in saving lives and accomplishing their mission. AirBoss Defense can help meet the challenge of accomplishing the mission while taking care of our heroes. ❚❙

Left: Sturdy construction, heavy-duty lifting handles, and a backboard sleeve allow the ISO-POD to be used like a stretcher. Below: THE AirBoss Defense ISO-POD is custom-designed to support movement in any form of transportation.

Giles Kyser is a Senior Vice President at AirBoss Defense, having spent the past 38 years in security and defence. A retired Marine Colonel, he commanded in combat at every level from a platoon to a Battalion TaskForce and also served at the US European Command and Pentagon. At AirBoss Defense he supports operations and planning, business development, contracting, and inside sales functions. 46 CBNW 2019/02


NCTAsia A Vision of IB Consultancy

22-24 October | Le Meridien | Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia | NCT-Asia.com

The long awaited NCT Asia is coming back to Kuala Lumpur for its 3rd edition in Malaysia, and 12th edition in the region, from 22-24 October, 2019! In collaboration with the National Defense University of Malaysia, we will host the largest CBRNe, C-IED and EOD conference of the region with a parallel conference & workshop stream, welcoming high-level decision-makers, civil and military operators, as well as industry experts relevant to combatting Non-Conventional Threats. In line with its last editions, NCT Asia 2019 will be welcoming delegations from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Japan, Myanmar, and South Korea, amongst many others! Malaysia is one of the most developed countries in Southeast Asia when it comes to CBRNe. In the wake of the assassination of Kim Jong-nam at Kuala Lumpur International Airport using the highly-lethal VX nerve agent, Malaysian authorities have been on high alert regarding future CBRNe threats. Furthermore, the theft of a radioactive device containing Iridium-192 from the back of a pick-up truck has only highlighted the importance of raising CBRNe awareness in the region. Partnering with the key actor in Malaysia for military training and research and development, the National Defense University of Malaysia, NCT Asia will provide the perfect space for addressing these pressing CBRNe threats and providing solutions. Whilst Malaysia has well trained personnel and experts in both the military and civil spheres, it remains imperative that we discuss and share knowledge on the constantly evolving CBRNe threat and how we may prevent as well as respond to them through international cooperation. Join us for the must-attend CBRNe, C-IED and EOD event in Asia of 2019, and get insight into the latest, relevant state-of-the-art technologies!

+31 71 744 0174 www.ib-consultancy.com @ibconsultancy facebook.com/ibconsultancy vimeo.com/ibconsultancy

DETECTION Biological threats pose a real and ever-increasing risk to public safety and national infrastructure. Hence, equipment to rapidly detect and quantify biological threats is integral to the health of the population and the protection of first responders

Photomicrograph of Bacillus anthracis. ©CDC


acteria such as Bacillus anthracis (anthrax), Brucella spp. and burkholderia, along with toxins such as ricin and botulinum toxin are known biological warfare agents (BWAs) that have the potential to cause extensive harm to populations. The use and production of both anthrax bacteria and the ricin toxin have been heavily reported in the news in the past 20 years. These are known to pose a high risk to national security due to the potential to cause high mortality rates and have the potential for a major public health impact while also being easily disseminated and transmitted from person to person.

Prevalent threats

Emerging in World War I, anthrax is classed as a Category A biological agent. Ricin is classified as a Category B biological agent – one that is less easily disseminated than a Category A, with associated lower morbidity and mortality rates. However, it remains a deadly toxin and only a few milligrams of pure ricin powder can be fatal to humans when inhaled. Notably, microscopic ricin particles of 1 micron (µM) are known to fatally reside in the lungs upon inhalation. In the 2001 anthrax attacks, known also as Amerithrax, five people died and 17 others were infected when letters containing Bacillus anthracis spores were sent to US media outlets and to two

Rachel Wynn introduces an orthogonal approach to biological threat detection in the field



multiple approach 48 CBNW 2019/02

The Bertin Coriolis Recon is a portable air sampler for biological warfare agent detection. ©Bertin

DETECTION Democratic senators. The five people that lost their lives all inhaled the deadly spores, two of which worked for a mail facility in Washington DC.

The FLIR IBAC 2 is a real-time air monitor for airborne biothreats. ©CDC

Early warning

Early warning systems to monitor air in public spaces that are capable of detecting low concentrations of microscopic particulates can limit the population’s exposure to potentially fatal threats. FLIR’s IBAC 2 is a pertinent example of a system capable of monitoring air, detecting and collect airborne BWAs in real time 24/7, 365 days a year. As the system can operate independently both indoors and outdoors (IP66 rated) and can be integrated into air

Below: The Tetracore T-COR 8 real-time PCR Thermocycler is suitable for use in the lab or out in the field Bottom right: The Tetracore T-COR 8 real-time PCR Thermocycler. ©Southern Scientific

©Southern Scientific

purification systems, it is well suited for monitoring air in heavily used and crowded public places. Additionally, it can be used as a field-perimeter early warning system in theatre, aiding the protection of military forces. Microscopic, weaponised anthrax spores and ricin particles are detectable

by the IBAC 2 and will trigger an alarm and collection on exposure. Once collected, the IBAC 2 gives a sample of the biological agent on a polyester felt filter, ready for extraction and further biological analysis. The ability to prepare a liquid sample from air containing the airborne BWA  CBNW 2019/02 49

DETECTION Right: The Tetracore C2T Sample Preparation Swab is used with the BioThreat Alert Lateral Flow Immunoassay (LFA) test strips. Below: The Tetracore BioThreat Alert Reader TX is in use with the BioThreat Alert LFA test strips.

©Southern Scientific

under investigation is key for further analysis and effective identification, as they are essential for most techniques in molecular biology. Bertin’s Coriolis Recon is a portable, ruggedised air sampler capable of producing the liquid sample in question. The instrument is IP54 rated, dedicated to CBRN recon teams and first responders, and is capable of collecting particles between 0.5-10 µM. Therefore, deadly anthrax spores or ricin particles in the air can be effectively and safely collected, ready for immediate further testing. Suitable for use in harsh environmental conditions, the Coriolis Recon is easy to deploy and set up and has the ability to perform long-term surveillance, sampling air for up to six hours.

Sampling suspect powder

As well as sampling air, the ability to sample and analyse suspect powders is crucial in maintaining public safety. In particular, the analysis of powders for biological agents is integral for first responders in the field and at facilities that process letters and parcels, as highlighted by the 2001 anthrax attacks and subsequent material mailed to the White House and other high-profile locations. Typically, powders can be collected using swabs, with reconstitution of the swabbed sample with water or an aqueous buffer to give a liquid sample ready for analysis. An all-in-one sampling system is ideal for use by first responders wearing PPE/RPE, an example of which is the C2T Sample preparation swab by Tetracore. 50 CBNW 2019/02

The simple-to-use pen-style system houses a removable swab, a buffer solution in an ampoule within the pen, and a re-sealable pipette end – allowing the user to easily dispense the liquid sample while also being able to dispose of the potentially contaminated sample in a controlled manner.

Field and lab analysis

To quickly analyse liquid samples containing biological agents in the field, lateral flow assays (LFAs) are an antibodybased assay which provide an optimal and convenient choice for detection. They are accurate, sensitive, highly portable, simple to use, cost-effective, and can give results in up to 15 minutes. Tetracore’s BioThreat Alert Strips use LFA technology to screen for the presence of specified biological threats. They are available as singleplex strips to test for one particular biological agent or multiplex strips, covering a range of bacteria and toxins in one easy-to-use strip. To remove uncertainty in the results of the LFA test strips and ensure that the test results are recorded and traceable, a tablet-based OCR (optical character recognition) reader that uses green light to effectively read the red lines of the LFAs can be used. Imaging the strips, the BioThreat Alert TX reader allows the user to maintain chain of custody as well as create exportable pdf reports, essential in investigations.

PCR testing

Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing is a commonly used technique in molecular biology to identify and

quantify bacteria and viruses via amplification of DNA, using thermal cycling to perform the amplification. PCR can be performed in real time (RT-PCR), allowing users to view data while it is being acquired. This is an extremely sensitive technique for biological materials containing a significant quantity of DNA, such as bacteria – making it highly applicable to the detection and identification of BWAs. With the development of portable, battery-powered RT-PCR Thermocyclers, such as the Tetracore T-COR 8, RT-PCR has become a technique suitable for testing materials out in the field as well as in the lab. The T-COR 8 is networkable, with eight independently programmable amplification wells which allow the user to run multiple protocols at once. It performs auto analysis and views data in real-time from individual wells. In less than an hour, the T-COR 8 allows first responders in the field to confirm the presence or absence of a biothreat. As well as the PCR Thermocycler itself, Tetracore manufactures dedicated assay cartridges to detect the biothreats, containing an internal control and reagents to detect the selected biological threat. To allow first responders to feel confident that the biological agent under investigation has been accurately identified, using multiple approaches to testing is imperative, ultimately to ensure the health of first responders and the general public. zy Rachel Wynn is a Field Product Specialist at Southern Scientific Ltd and has recently completed a PhD in Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Southampton.


Banning the Bomb Col H R Naidu Gade asks if we will ever see a nuclearweapons-free world The devastation caused by the atomic bombs dropped on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II in August 1945 led many governments and advocacy groups to call immediately to ban the Bomb. But the power unleashed through splitting atoms is so great that several countries still see the atomic bomb as the ultimate strategic weapon



n addition to the five declared nuclear weapon states China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, the world has seen the emergence of four more nuclear armed nations: India, Israel, Pakistan and North Korea, with Iran a possible tenth impending member of the club. In the Middle East a dozen states are already exploring civilian nuclear technologies in response to the Iranian programme and the first step toward a weapons capability. 52 CBNW 2019/02


Landmark treaties

The number of nuclear weapons states (NWS) would have increased were it not for concerted international actions: the negotiation of the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT), 1968 and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), 1996. Added to these landmark treaties were International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards on civilian nuclear materials and the creation of the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group to control trade in

nuclear materials and dual-use items. A Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty also prohibits the further production fissile material for nuclear weapons. The US proffers security guarantees to certain key nations like Japan and South Korea that chose to remain non-nuclear, despite having nuclear-armed adversaries. Today, there are around 15,000 nuclear warheads deployed on land, air and sea vectors by the weaponspossessing countries. Over four decades

DETECTION FLASHPOINT: PULWAMA Nuclear weapon test Bravo (yield 15 Mt) on Bikini Atoll – an experimental thermonuclear device surface event. ©US DOE

On 14 February 2019, a convoy of vehicles carrying security personnel on the Jammu Srinagar National Highway was attacked by a vehicle-borne suicide bomber at Lethpora in the Pulwama district, Jammu and Kashmir, India. The attack resulted in the deaths of 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel and the attacker. Following the Pulwama attack, India carried out daring airstrikes in the early hours of 26 February against terrorist camps at Balakot deep inside Pakistani territory. By doing this India has called Pakistan’s nuclear bluff. This is a significant departure from the old routine and has set a new benchmark for all future Indian responses. That the Pakistanis felt the Indians were quite capable of upping the ante further and going up the escalation ladder, is very significant – because it means they can no longer be sure of India’s restraint.

©Wikipedia/Nizil Shah

Above: Candlelit march in Mehsana, Gujarat, India in the wake of the February Pulwama attack. Left: One of many Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) demonstrations in 1983, at the height of the Cold War.

generate momentum for the abolition of nuclear weapons.

A Treaty of prohibition – at last

there has been a growing concern for not only further proliferation but also the security of these weapons. The initiative to seek a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons is an outcome of the discourse centred on promoting greater awareness and understanding of the humanitarian consequences that would result from any use of nuclear weapons. Many countries and coalitions of non-governmental organisations worked to build a powerful global groundswell of public support and

The UN General Assembly by resolution 71/258 decided to convene in 2017 a UN conference to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination. On 7 July 2017, The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) was adopted at the UN in New York by 122 member states that have categorically rejected nuclear weapons. In the vote on the treaty text, 122 were in favour, one voted against, and one abstained. Sixty-nine nations did not vote, among them all of the nuclear weapon states and all the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) members except the Netherlands. The Treaty opened for signature on 20 September 2017 and will enter into force 90 days after the fiftieth instrument of ratification has been deposited. As of date, 70 nations have signed the treaty and 22 have ratified and become the

binding members to the treaty. The treaty includes a comprehensive set of prohibitions on participating in any nuclear weapon activities. These include undertakings not to develop, test, produce, acquire, possess, stockpile, use or threaten to use nuclear weapons. The Treaty also prohibits the deployment of nuclear weapons on national territory and the provision of assistance to any State in the conduct of prohibited activities. The nuclear weapon ban treaty complements the prohibitions on biological and chemical weapons, land mines and cluster munitions, and reinforces various other legal instruments on nuclear weapons, including the NPT.

The resistance

Nuclear weapons states and many advanced countries did not participate in the negotiations of the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which were attended by 135 countries. No NWS has expressed support for a ban treaty; indeed, a number of them, including the US and Russia, have expressed explicit opposition. North Korea was, ironically, the only nuclear state to vote for initiating ban negotiations. Many of the non-nuclear-armed members of the NATO, along with Australia and Japan, are also resistant to a ban treaty, as they believe that US nuclear  CBNW 2019/02 53

DETECTION ©Wikipedia/Antônio Milena (ABr)

©Wikimedia Commons/Vitaly V. Kuzmin

Above: The Russian RS-24 Yars (SS-27 Mod 2) ICBM. Left: An Indian Agni-II intermediate range ballistic missile on a road-mobile launcher on show during a Republic Day Parade in 2004. Below: World’s nuclear stockpile.


Above: Model of the Tsar Bomba in the Sarov Atomic Bomb Museum. Tsar Bomba had an explosive yield of 50 megatons, the biggest nuclear device ever tested.

©PloughShares Fund

weapons enhance their security. Several NATO members claim that the treaty will be “ineffective in eliminating nuclear weapons” and instead called for advanced implementation of Article VI of the NPT.

Nuclear power – the risk

Eliminating nuclear weapons does not mean abolishing nuclear power. Indeed, concerns about global warming and growing energy needs will likely result in an increase in civilian nuclear power plants and fuel enrichment and reprocessing facilities. Without tighter controls on these facilities the risk would remain – even after nuclear disarmament – that a government could seize nuclear materials and quickly rebuild a small nuclear arsenal. Nuclear disarmament is an expensive process, but if it has been agreed to be a goal that will vastly improve international security, then the costs are not so high that they should be anything more than a secondary concern.

In reverse gear

The US is reportedly embarking on a 30-year plan to rebuild its entire nuclear arsenal that will cost upwards of $1.7 trillion. The Trump Administration’s 2018 Nuclear Posture Review is a step in the reverse direction. It also expands the circumstances under which the US is permitted to use 54 CBNW 2019/02

nuclear weapons. It calls for building ‘more usable’ new types of nuclear weapons, including a submarinelaunched ballistic missile warhead option and a submarine-launched cruise missile. What is almost worse is what the US nuclear policy leaves out. America currently shows little interest in pursuing additional arms control agreements. The other great nuclear power, Russia, is also moving in the wrong direction. Last March, Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled several dangerous new types of nuclear weapons, including a nuclear torpedo and a nuclear-powered cruise missile. Russia is believed to be in noncompliance with the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty by developing and deploying a treatyprohibited missile, forcing the US to withdraw from the INF treaty – and, soon after, the Russians retaliating through the

same action. Certainly, nuclear disarmament is under great threat.

Pakistan’s nuclear bluff exposed

Pakistan is a NWS also rapidly increasing its nuclear arsenal through deployment of tactical nuclear weapons, and could very soon be having the world’s fourth highest number of nuclear warheads. For nearly thirty years now, Pakistan has been playing the madman with nukes. The strategic deterrence posture of Pakistan has been based on first use of nuclear weapons against any conventional attack on Pakistan, especially from India. Innumerable times over these three decades Pakistani generals and politicians have, at the drop of a hat, threatened the use of nuclear weapons against India. In turn, India has been over-cautious in responding appropriately to repeated acts of terrorism in India by jihadists operating from Pakistani territory. ❚❙

Col (retd) H R Naidu Gade is a CBRNe Professional and the Chief Consultant for CBRNe Secure India – a forum and knowledge centre to raise awareness among the general public and security agencies on the threats arising from the use of CBRNe materials and their disastrous consequences.

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Feel the pulse James McQuaid rolls out a new handheld metal and radiation detector

Scanning at an airport facility.

Instrumentation with simplicity of operation is one of the chief objectives for effective first-line response in multiple security operations


All photos@berkeleynucleonics.com

his achievement has been realised with the multifunctional MetRad 1. This is made even more significant with the ability to simultaneously detect metal and gamma radiation – without the need of switching modes. Alarm indications of radioactive material and metal are automatically presented visually in different colours, achieving an effective and simplistic technique for detection of metal, radiation or both. The MetRad1 is capable of detecting many metals, including iron, nickel, copper, brass, bronze, lead, aluminium, tin, gold and silver.

Security operations

A single scan of baggage or personnel allows both metals (for example, handguns or knives) and radioactive materials to be effectively screened, thus saving time and improving overall security operations. The MetRad 1 is convenient 56 CBNW 2019/02

for long-term use because of its small size (42 cm), light weight (<2 kg), ease of use and ruggedised design. The audio alarm may be switched to vibrate when in an area where the audible alarm can be disturbing to others or where operations are of a covert nature. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t underestimate the importance of gun surveillance and detection. In US airports alone, the number of guns carried through security is estimated to exceed 4,000 this year â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with about 93% loaded. Security operations for the MetRad 1 include: Customs, transportation security, police services, security in airports, building security, military, hospitals and public events. All these applications include the detection of weapons and radioactive materials.

Gamma-ray detection

The MetRad 1 gamma sensor is a large cesium iodide (CsI) scintillator coupled to a silicon photo-multiplier (SiPM), which results in excellent sensitivity to shielded sources. The CsI scintillator is doped to

DETECTION Signal of a SiPM detector at 50 Ohms termination.

Side view of alarm lights (alarm lights displayed).

causes an electric current to flow through the receiver coil, activating the alarm. The closer you move the transmitter coil to the piece of metal, the stronger the EM field the transmitter coil creates and therefore, the stronger the EM field the metal creates in the receiver coil. This produces increased current to flow in the alarm circuitry, intensifying the alarm.

MetRad 1 scanning for radiation and metal in a warehouse.

Scintillator specifications

achieve a high emission of light at the most efficient wavelength when coupled to a SiPM. This is accomplished by doping with thallium and therefore commonly designated as CsI(Tl). CsI(Tl) is one of the brightest scintillators known, producing a high photon output (54 photons/keV). When the CsI(Tl) scintillator is coupled to a SiPM the light, representing the gamma-ray energy, is amplified with gains as high as 106. The resulting light (called scintillation) produces an electrical pulse at the output of the SiPM which will activate the selected alarm mode (coloured lights, audible sound or vibration). These mechanically compact components of the radiation detector take up a small amount of space in the streamlined package of the MetRad 1. Furthermore the CsI(Tl)-SiPM can be powered at a low voltage (typically 5-10 volts).

Metal detection

The metal locator circuitry is compact while using the latest techniques for sensitive metal detection. It contains a coil of wire known as the transmitter coil. When electricity flows through the coil, an electro-magnetic field (EM field) is

created all around it. As you move the detector the EM field moves as well. However, if you move the detector over a metal object, the moving EM field affects the atoms inside the metal by changing the way the electrons move. If there is a changing magnetic field in the metal, there must be an electric current moving as well. When electricity is moving in a piece of metal, it in turn must induce an EM field. Therefore, when you move a metal detector over a piece of metal, the EM field coming from the detector causes another EM field to appear around the metal. It's this second magnetic field, around the metal, that the detector picks up. The metal detector has a second coil of wire (known as the receiver coil) that's connected to a circuit containing an alarm (sound, vibration or light). As you move the detector over the piece of metal the magnetic field, produced by the metal, passes through the coil. This

The CsI(Tl) scintillator is well suited for portable instrumentation. It has very good mechanical properties, making it ideal where severe shock conditions are encountered. The CsI(Tl) coupled to a SiPM results in a very compact module and is sensitive to very low-energy radiation (such as americium-241 at 60 keV), as well as high-energy radiation (such as cobalt-60 at 1250 keV). The SiPM is also insensitive to magnetic fields â&#x20AC;&#x201C; making it an excellent choice when packaged with a metal detector. While the instrument has the sensitivity typically used for homeland security, it can be operated around X-ray scanners without the concern of false alarms. An auto-adjust button is provided for the proper background level when used in an X-ray environment. Rechargeable or off-the-shelf batteries are another feature for convenient long-term operation with up to 500 hours of active use. Operations in adverse conditions such as rain (Ingress Protection is IP65) and broad temperature range (-20oC to +50oC) is all part of the ruggedised and dependable operation. The detection sensitivity of metal and radioactive material can be maximised by passing the MetRad 1 close to the object being scanned. However, handguns can still be detected at a distance of 20 cm with a scanning speed of 10-50 cm per second. zy

James McQuaid specialises in nuclear spectroscopy instrumentation. He is a former manager of Nuclear Chemistry Engineering at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and presently a consultant for Berkeley Nucleonics Corp. He holds two US patents in the area of homeland security and nuclear medicine. CBNW 2019/02 57

HAZMAT SAFETY Dragon & flames: ©pixabay; underlying image: ©Wikimedia

CBNW US Correspondent Frank G .Rando outlines the threat of major chemical incidents in the United States and argues that severe budget cuts are impeding the ability of agencies mandated to protect health, safety and the environment SPECIAL FOCUS

Taming the dragon Fixed chemical manufacturing, storage and disposal sites – including uncontrolled and abandoned hazardous waste sites – pose serious environmental, safety, public health and security challenges. Transportation incidents involving hazardous materials are also of grave concern

“Hazardous chemical facilities are stationary weapons of mass destruction spread all around the country.” SEN. BARACK OBAMA, 2006


azardous chemical spills and releases have caused injuries, illness and environmental harm. These have often occurred while hazardous industrial chemicals and materials were in transit. Currently confronting emergency management agencies is reduced funding for regulatory and criminal enforcement, environment and health programmes, and for emergency planning and preparedness.  These cuts seriously affect mitigation, operational

The St. Bernard Parish oil refinery in Louisiana was severely damaged during Hurricane Katrina in August 2005. ©Jacinta Quesada/FEMA

58 CBNW 2019/02

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HAZMAT SAFETY response, incident analysis and accident reconstruction, health and exposure assessments, and risk analysis and recovery related to hazardous materials (HazMat).

Incident investigation

The US Chemical Safety and Hazards Investigation Board (CSB) was created 20 years ago by the US Congress as an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents. The CSB’s mission is to “drive chemical safety change through independent investigation to protect people and the environment.” The CSB’s vision is a nation safe from chemical disasters. It does not engage in regulatory enforcement. Instead, it employs subject matter experts to make recommendations to the chemical industrial sector’s regulatory agencies: the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Chemical Manufacturing Association. In essence, the CSB conducts rootcause investigations of chemical accidents at fixed chemical facilities by interviewing witnesses and examining company records, inventories, operating procedures and emergency plans. They also obtain chemical samples and equipment from accident sites and send recovered physical evidence to independent laboratories for analysis and testing. The CSB is authorised to conduct investigations of more general hazards, whether or not an accident has already occurred. In 2002, the Board’s first hazard investigation into reactive chemicals reviewed more than 150 serious accidents involving uncontrolled, run-away industrial chemical reactions leading to new, critical recommendations to OSHA and EPA for regulatory changes.

POTENTIAL WEAPONIZED HAZMAT  Inorganic chemicals: chlorine, ammonia; hydrogen fluoride (HF) is-a highly corrosive acid; sulphuric acid, nitric acid and sodium hydroxide (lye) are powerful corrosives  Toxic industrial gases: carbon monoxide, hydrogen cyanide, phosgene and arsine; nitrogen and argon are simple asphyxiants; hydrogen, liquefied petroleum gas and propane are highly flammable  Petrochemical and fossil fuel products, intermediates and by-products: diesel fuel, jet fuel and gasoline are flammable; they can be utilised as improvised incendiary weapons. Petroleum and petroleum-based products, including distillates, are the most commonly released hazardous materials in transit.

Effects of the cuts

Train cars block a roadway in Farragut, Tennessee after a derailment and acid spill in September 2002. The hazmat release of fuming sulphuric acid caused the evacuation of 2,600 nearby residents for nearly three days; est. damage $1 million.


The CSB, EPA, OSHA, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Authority (PHMA) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) are subjected to drastic budgetary cuts. The CSB is even described as “an agency slated for extinction.” While enhancing Homeland Security policies and capabilities, chemical infrastructure safety and security sorely lacks the requisite attention. Due to changes in national policy making, regulatory changes favour the oil, gas and chemical industries. At the same time, the current administration has vastly impeded resources for effective HazMat comprehensive prevention, planning, mitigation, response, and resilience. The very agencies mandated to protect the American public and its environment from chemical threats are on a budgetary chopping block. At times they are even thwarted from performing their official duties – or told to modify or downplay their findings. While accidental releases of hazardous chemicals are far more common than sabotage or terrorism, the plethora of stored and transported toxic and flammable chemicals make them potential WME (weapons of mass effect).

Multiple hazards

Hazardous materials generate multiple hazards upon release – reactive, flammable and toxic. Materials may interact with other substances and materials and release toxic gases, explode, or burst into flames. They react with environmental and meteorological conditions causing environmental contamination and degradation and secondary hazards such as rainwater incursion into reaction vessels. This leads to exothermic reactions or contaminated run-off entering a municipal water supply system . There are multiple determinants in incident management: wind direction and speed, topography, soil types, vegetation, hydrogeological characteristics, ambient temperature, precipitation, atmospheric stability, environmental persistence, bioaccumulative potential of released substances, and – the time of day.

National policy

Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD-7) establishes a national policy for Federal departments to identify and prioritise the critical infrastructure and key resources (CIKR) of the US and to protect them from terrorist attacks. Based on HSPD-7, the following impacts are relevant when discussing the chemical sector:  l Impact on life, health and safety 60 CBNW 2019/02









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HAZMAT SAFETY ©US Chemical Safety Board

and shared with relevant stakeholders . Emergency medical response – triage, treatment and transport of exposed and chemically contaminated victims – also depends heavily on medical facility surge capacity and capabilities. Human exposure and toxicology assessments are mandatory along with patient decontamination and fatality management operations. Added to this is medico-legal investigation and medical examiner assets, decontamination and forensic examination.

Communicating with the public l@ Impact on government function l@ Impact on the economy and private sector. Based upon red-teaming exercises, scenarios with the greatest potential for catastrophic impacts were found to be: l@ High-volume release (either fixed site or transport) l@ Critical shortages of essential raw chemicals, precursors or intermediates l@ Misuse, sabotage, tampering and theft.

An explosion and fire took place at the Husky Energy Refinery, Superior, WI, on 26 April 2018.

All-hands preparedness

Incident response

Immediate life-safety actions include sheltering in place versus evacuation, moving uphill, upwind, or upstream, maintaining adequate distances from the incident site, donning appropriate personal protective equipment, emergency extrication and rapid rescue, gross decontamination, and emergency medical care. The Incident Command System (ICS) must be established with those arriving first on scene assuming immediate command and performing initial assessment and ongoing scene size-up. This function can be relinquished upon the arrival of senior and more experienced personnel. Fire suppression efforts may be limited to allowing a chemical fire to self-extinguish. It may also include providing a cooling water stream – so long as released substances are not water-reactive – to overheated and strained storage tanks, reaction vessels and other containers. This will mitigate the possibility of a Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion (BLEVE). Fire suppression may also involve the use of foam extinguishing systems. In a terrorism scenario a major chemical incident becomes an active crime scene. In the acute response phase, care and specialist resources will also have to deal with active shooter and secondary device threats. Initial and further environmental sampling and monitoring of the response site and off-site and risk and hazard assessments are reported to the Incident Commander 62 CBNW 2019/02

The designated Public Information Officer staff provides updated briefings to the media in a sequestered area. Accurate information and rumour control is vital to avoid the deleterious effects of exaggerating the situation. This is a tall order in the age of instant and ubiquitous social media. Mass care needs of displaced and evacuated citizens must be coordinated with NGOs such as the American Red Cross and Salvation Army Disaster Services. Psychological support services need to be in place and readily accessible to responders and the affected community.

The train collision in January 2005 near the Avondale Mills plant in Graniteville, South Carolina killed nine and over 250 were treated for chlorine exposure.

Major chemical incidents are complex and dynamic emergencies. They require extensive community-wide pre-planning and preparedness efforts to assure safe and comprehensive responses and resolution. The elements of criminality and terrorism add a demanding dimension to a complex problem. These must be addressed in the prevention, planning and preparedness phases of the emergency management cycle. The health, safety, security, environmental and, economic impacts of a major chemical incident can be catastrophic. Therefore, an ‘all-hands’ integrated emergency management approach is essential. We cannot afford budgetary cuts and political indifference to chemical accident and hazards investigations. These cutbacks impede the safety and security of our chemical sector critical infrastructure. Moreover, morally and ethically we cannot compromise the health, safety and wellbeing of communities living in the shadow of an impending chemical disaster. zy

©Wikimedia/Eddie George, Aiken DPS



Col (Dr) Ram Athavale explains how management of the Indian chemicals industry can act as a beacon for developing countries INDIA’S CHEMICAL INDUSTRY  The Indian chemicals industry is the sixth-largest industry in the world and the second largest in Asia in terms of volume  It is currently valued at around US$35 billion. India has a diversified manufacturing base with a capacity to produce quality chemicals for world consumers  The chemical sector accounts for about 17.6% of the manufacturing sector output, 13 to 14% in total exports and 8-9% of total imports of the country


ndia’s chemical industries are mostly housed in the western and southern Indian states while major users are located in the northern states, especially with respect to consumption of agrochemicals. Since western Indian states are the major chemical producing zones, these are also the major hazardous waste-generating states.

Hazardous waste initiatives

Initiatives have been taken with respect to hazardous waste management by providing common facilities like secured landfill sites, installation of state-of-theart incinerators, and common effluent treatment plants for wastewater treatment. Individual facilities are also provided by large and medium industries.

 Government of India (GoI) plans to invest US$33 billion in three approved Petroleum, Chemicals and Petrochemicals Investment Regions (PCPIRs). It has also established port-based chemical parks in special economic zones (SEZs)  Most exports are dyes, dyestuffs, pharmaceuticals and alkali chemicals  India has a strong base for innovation in its network of 200 national laboratories and 1,300 R&D units, which can be leveraged for the shift towards an innovation-based industry  The chemical industry in India is witnessing increased focus towards R&D, which in turn provides opportunities for growth of R&D hubs and industry specific institutes. 64 CBNW 2019/02

©Madhu Kapparath/Mint

The chemical industry is one of the oldest in India. It not only plays a crucial role in meeting the daily needs of the population, it also contributes significantly towards the industrial and economic growth of the nation. It is also one of India’s most diversified industrial sectors, covering more than 70,000 commercial products

The major concerns and thrust areas of environmental pollution, at present, are hazardous waste handling, its storage and disposal and minimisation of volatile organic compounds, besides ensuring proper operation and maintenance of pollution control devices. The Ministry of Chemicals and Fertiliser also encourages training courses. In addition, various nongovernmental bodies such as the Indian Chemical Council (ICC), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) also conduct training courses on chemical management, safety, health and environment. The training programmes are designed for the personnel responsible for implementation of MSIHC (Manufacture,

CHEMICALS CONTROL Tank 610 on the deserted site of the Bhopal disaster.

©Wikipedia/Julian Nitzsche

The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 serves as an umbrella Act and can link other Acts without interfering with the autonomy of any other Acts or Rules. Various ministries at central and state level with their regulatory agencies are responsible for implementing the respective laws. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) is the nodal ministry for enforcement of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986. It is therefore the coordinating ministry for management of chemicals and functions in close coordination with the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers.

Storage and import of Hazardous Chemical) Rules on the units, workers and public.

Key areas of concern


● Insufficient database. There is a need for a well organised database for chemical management. The thrust areas should be ground water quality, chemical residue in food, public and occupational health, storage and disposal of obsolete chemicals, chemical poisoning and chemical accident during transportation. These databases need to be analysed with respect to risk assessment and risk

As for legislation dealing with chemicals, India is very well placed. Almost all steps of chemical management from cradle-tograve legislation have been laid down. The most important aspect is that this wide spectrum of legislation is mutually exclusive and overlapping is not significant. These Acts, Rules and Regulations can be classified into following groups:

The following are the key areas of concern in chemicals management in India.

reduction programmes on priority basis. ● Inspection, vigilance and public awareness. The inherent limitation is lack of trained manpower and standardisation of procedures for inspection and vigilance. This can be overcome by establishing standardised procedures and strict oversight mechanisms. Private consultancy firms can be contracted for auditing and inspection of chemical facilities. Moreover, India has a large number of research institutes, universities, industry associations, NGOs, labour unions and professional organisations. This vast resource can be utilised for activities like data collection, training & awareness and monitoring. Such reputed organisations and industry associations can play a valuable role in policy framing, risk analysis and implementation of risk reduction programmes. ● Inventory of chemicals. While multiple agencies are no doubt involved in the overall effort, synchronisation is needed. The national data is available with concerned ministries, departments and agencies, but there 

Left: The Union Carbide plant in Bhopal – site of the world’s worst industrial disaster on 2 December 1984. Below: Dirty and illegal ship breaking in Gujarat.


CBNW 2019/02 65

CHEMICALS CONTROL has been no major effort to harmonise the data collected by different agencies for data analysis. The National Informatics Centre (NIC) can play an important role in computerising the existing database of various government departments. There are numerous institutes and laboratories spread out over the country with varying capabilities. Most laboratories, even though recognised by the Government of India, should be accredited by the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) – and other international accreditation agencies for maintaining standards.

International support

India is also a party to all international conventions and protocols relating to chemical management, such as the Basel Convention, Rotterdam Convention, Stockholm Convention, Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS), and The Chemical Weapons Convention. The participation and involvement in international agreements concerning management of chemicals is well developed in India. Most of the major international organisations such as the WHO, ILO (International Labour Organisation), World Bank, UN Industrial Development Organisation, Food and Agriculture Organisation and others are working actively in India. There are well-defined procedures and structures to help in ensuring coordination between ministries and agencies and those responsible for health and safety activities. Compliance to TSCA (Toxic Substances Control Act, USA), Detailing the life cycle analysis of chemicals.

The chemical industry in India is the world’s sixth largest.

©Mahesh Singhi, New Delhi for Business Today

REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation & Restriction of Chemicals, EU), RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) and CLP (Classification, Labelling & Packaging) in India is currently essentially for the exports market, especially to Europe and the US. Major international programmes active in India are International Programme of Chemical Safety (IPCS), Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM), International Register for Potentially Toxic Chemicals (IRPTC) and the UNEP clean production programme. With respect to awareness and understanding of workers and the public, the Central Pollution Control Board and the National Safety Council organise various courses on chemical ©Ivan Holoubek

safety, health and pollution control.

National Action Plan

The Government of India’s MoEF&CC constituted in April 2017 a National Coordination Committee (NCC) for preparation of a National Action Plan for Chemicals (NAPC) under the World Bank-aided Capacity Building for Industrial Pollution Management (CBIPM) project. This is to be a comprehensive plan to remove all shortcomings and enhance compliance to meet global chemical management standards. The finalised NAPC was expected to be ready in 2019. Overall, it is seen that India has all the necessary legislation and infrastructure for implementing effective chemical management in the country. What is needed is the availability of data for evolving action plans and prioritisation, inventory of chemicals, and a strong oversight mechanism for audit, inspection and vigilance. While there are some domestic shortcomings the NAPC should see India as a more responsible global chemical player. ❚❙ Col (Dr) Ram Athavale, PhD has been a Key Adviser to the Government of India on CBRN security. For the past three years he was a Key CBRN Expert for the EU CBRN Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence and advised governments of Eastern and Central Africa on CBRN risk mitigation matters. Presently he is a CBRN Risk Mitigation, Incident Management and Security Consultant based at Pune, India.

66 CBNW 2019/02



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TRAINING ©The Netherlands Defense CBRN Centre

Entrance to the Metro train station at the Simulation Centre. ©The Netherlands Defense CBRN Centre

Unifying the REAL ©The Netherlandſ Defenſe CBRN Centre

Ultra-realistic training for CBRNE can be enabled by a physical 3D engine based on today’s most innovative technologies


he threat of terror attacks, including CBRNE-related events in urban areas, is escalating in many countries. Expressing mounting concern, governments are actively seeking comprehensive, versatile and highly effective responses. Ideally, the solution will include thorough training for first responders and law enforcement teams. It will ensure full mission readiness by providing the most realistic training environment possible, while eliminating any potential danger to trainees from hazardous materials (HazMat). For situations in which a CBRNE threat arises during a terror attack, a method is required for synergistically training CBRNE personnel together with military forces. This involves real-time communication between civilian and military platforms, enabling instantaneous coordination.

Advanced 3D

Bagira’s state-of-the-art CBRNE training system – the BreakPoint-TIM (Trainer for Incident Management) – is unique in providing a remarkably realistic, high-definition, 3-D training environment for up to 200 trainees simultaneously – without exposing the participants to hazardous substances. Bagira’s BreakPoint-TIM is built on the company’s next-generation, field-proven, highly realistic imagery software – the B-One Engine – which is the basis for all 68 CBNW 2019/02

Above: Buildings inside the Simulation Centre. Top Left: The metro station in the Simulation Centre.

Bagira’s simulators. The B-One Engine can simultaneously handle up to 100,000 entities, whose individual behaviour is dictated by actual physical models. B-One supports many types of scenarios for various missions, in which trainees experience lifelike simulations of actual events, including the continu-

TRAINING ©The Netherlands Defense CBRN Centre

Yaron Mizrachi describes technological advances in CBRNE simulation

with the VIRTUAL ©Bagira Systems

ously evolving realities that occur during a real attack. It can create a virtual ‘live’ city with traffic, pedestrians, and so forth as the CBRNE-threatened arena. It provides realistic all-weather, day and night images, with the night vision images based on the specific materials’ compositions.

Above: The dispersion of hazardous materials as depicted by the simulation program. Top Right: The B-Scene Touch-screen Digital Sandbox.

Enhancing realism

Each participant is given an Android device similar to a smartphone with an application, based on the latest technologies, that emulates a real sensor responding to real CBRNE threats. Via the device, trainees receive roles associated with their actual jobs and responsibilities. For example, a member of a medical team could be tasked  with virtually examining and treating the injured, while a CBNW 2019/02 69

TRAINING member of a decontamination team would be asked to handle decon-related activities. The simulation includes the dispersal of dangerous substances via a digital cloud in which virtual substances behave identically to the actual behaviour of these substances. They are affected by continuously changing conditions in the training scenario – including wind, rain, snow, the type of materials released and the height at which they disperse. Virtual gas acts like real gas, and affects the trainee according to his protection level and his position relative to the spreading gas. If the material typically spreads downward, the trainee will need to bend down to detect it and to measure it at the correct height.

Protecting the participants

Beyond preventing trainee exposure to dangerous substances, the devices used by the trainees employ a location sensor which enables the control station to very precisely determine the location of every trainee – within approximately 2 cm! The system is based on both cellular and WiFi communications. In open areas, trainees are located via GPS, and indoors, via a dedicated, high-accuracy indoor positioning system. The Android-based application also keeps track of the virtual medical condition of each participant and updates the instructor. If, according to the current situation’s risk level, the trainee should be wearing a mask or gloves, he is directed to put them on and mark the application accordingly. The instructor can verify the trainee’s use of the mask or gloves, and determine the seriousness of the health hazard and whether or not he has been affected by the spreading substances. In addition, BreakPoint-TIM also emulates social media platforms, allowing participants to receive messages via Facebook and other social media. Bagira’s simple and intuitive CBRNE simulator software can be easily mastered in only a few minutes.

Planning the scenarios

Bagira’s CBRNE training system comes with a digital sandbox – an 218-cm virtual table with touch screen, called B-Scene – which is an advanced 3D virtual planning and debriefing tool enabling the detailed preparation of events prior to the training scenario. All elements can be altered – including terrain, weather, buildings, and equipment – and unlimited events can be run and tested on the table.

Unifying training worlds

Bagira Systems synergistically connects all training worlds – LVC – Live, Virtual, and Constructive training – blending real and virtual worlds into one unified solution, controlled by a single instructor. This ability, together with the B-One Engine, allows real-time, intelligent decision-making in a highly realistic environment – as well as unlimited training possibilities for endless training missions. The result: maximised trainee preparedness for real-life situations. Bagira’s simulation systems represent a quantum leap in simulation realism. They enable the comprehensive integration of military and civilian platforms and provide customised interactive training environments to suit each client for all types of missions. With a special standardised skeleton and interchangeable animation, based on the B-One Engine, ultra-realistic simulation systems portray dynamically evolving environments. These include the physical destruction of buildings, bomb sizes, and location of hits, as well as arenas the size of an entire country in real time, movement of vehicles in urban areas according to 70 CBNW 2019/02

©The Netherlands Defense CBRN Centre.

The Ambulance Station at the Simulation Centre.

local traffic laws, and accurate IR images based on the composition of materials. The unified technological platform and the ability to fully integrate multiple diverse training systems enables the B-One Engine to seamlessly connect the company’s versatile 3D CBRNE training capabilities with its other training systems. This enables the training of all forces involved in dealing with terror threats during their training sessions, with full commonality between the systems’ control stations, as well as control by a single instructor. Examples of Bagira’s military systems that can be combined with each other, and with the CBRNE system, are JOBSS – JOint Fires BattleSpace Simulator – a virtual arena that simulates fire elements including artillery, rockets, UAVs, air platforms, and communication systems. It can also be combined with the MAGNET force-on-force tactical training system, which simulates real weapon firing without using real ammunition and without safety limitations. The B-One Engine challenges trainees with diverse, simultaneously presented event types for complete mission readiness. zy

NETHERLANDS CBRNE CENTRE Bagira was selected by the Ministry of Defence of NATO member The Netherlands to supply the CBRNE training simulator and to operate it in the Dutch National CBRNE Training Centre for 15 years. This is an additional order from the Dutch Government following their previous purchase of Bagira’s JOBSS training system. Yaron Mizrachi is General Manager of Bagira Systems Ltd, a leader in the field of training and simulation. He joined the Armaz Group – of which Bagira is a part – in 1994 and has been the Group’s President and CEO since 2002.


Cleaning up Chris Hodge asks how much does decontamination really cost?

All images ŠFirst Line Technology


hen considering cost as an independent variable, the requirement should never be to meet a certain threshold for cost per gallon. It should be to achieve a desired end state. Evaluation of cost should consider the quantity required to achieve the stated end state. The real question is: how much does it cost to cover and effectively decontaminate a particular amount of contaminated surface area? Focusing on the desired 72 CBNW 2019/02

The traditional way to compare the value of decontamination solutions was to compare the cost per gallon for their acquisition. But all decontamination solutions are not created equal, and cost per gallon can be misleading. Some have more reactive potential in similar volumes and are therefore more effective, and thus, more cost effective. This can have a significant impact on the total life cycle cost end state and the associated cost to cover gives us a much better understanding of the actual cost of decontamination, rather than just the cost of a volume of material.

Working it out

For example, one decontaminant costs only US$25 per gallon and effectively covers 75 sq ft (25 sq m). Another solution costs $100 per gallon but effectively covers 2,500 sq ft (833 sq m). If costs per gallon is all that is comparted, the $25 per gallon decontaminant is

clearly the best. However, if 2,500 sq ft of surface must be decontaminated, 33 gallons of the $25 per gallon solution would be required. This would cost significantly more ($833) than the one gallon of $100 per gallon decontaminant. In the case of Dahlgren Decon, one gallon, against any chemical or biological agent other than VX, is capable of effectively decontaminating up to 3,000 sq ft (1,000 sq m). If the bulk contaminant is reduced with a FiberTect

DECONTAMINATION wipe prior to the application of Dahlgren Decon, coverage and effective decontamination of more than 10,000 sq ft (3,330 sq m) with a single gallon is possible. This should challenge the notion that price per gallon can be compared to determine best value.

Time and personnel

Another factor to consider in evaluating the true costs of different decontamination solutions and their use, is time. The time it takes to deploy the

Above and Below: Dahlgren Decon is applied to personal protective equipment. Left: Using FiberTect Mitt on PPE. Right: Wiping PPE with FiberTect wipe to remove bulk contaminant.

decontamination process, plus the required dwell time (or the time to neutralise contamination), plus any time required for rinsing and so on, this is really the true time it takes to complete a decontamination mission. Time and personnel are expensive. More importantly, if the goal of decontamination is to restore the ability of materiel and personnel resources to return to their normal duties, time costs capability. The simpler and faster the decontamination process is to deploy, the less decontamination will cost in terms of money and capability. In the past it would take a large team â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with significant amount of hardware and decon from a centralised bulk storage location (think logistics of inventory) â&#x20AC;&#x201C; a long time to set up a decon line and execute the decon mission. Large sprayers capable of heating the decontaminant, generating foams, and applying at high pressures were required. Collecting large amounts of effluent ď&#x201A;&#x2020; CBNW 2019/02 73

DECONTAMINATION Left: Decontaminating a robot with Dahlgren Decon.

Below: To reduce the total life-cycle cost of decontamination, select a decontamination solution that requires low volumes of liquid and is less corrosive than alternative solutions.

due to the required methods of application was a necessary consequence. The decon team might even have to dig pits to contain significant volumes of run-off. Afterwards, blivits of hazardous material would have to be dealt with or soil remediation activities would be required.

Comparing past scenarios

What if there were very effective processes that could be deployed in minutes, that neutralised the threat in minutes, and generated no significant run-off? What if there was no need for centralised storage or large and complex equipment to maintain and set up? Effectiveness would be multiplied, and logistical needs would be greatly reduced. Instead of a team and a complicated set-up to execute the decon mission, the decon mission could be executed rapidly at the individual or vehicle level and

Left: This graphic illustrates the relative cost to effectively cover and neutralise contaminated areas of different sizes between two decontamination solutions with different reactive potential.

carried out quickly. This is significant because when considering the true cost of decon, the time it takes to restore the contaminated area or equipment to normal activities or original state must be considered.

Corrosion impact

When the following are considered â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 74 CBNW 2019/02


centralised logistics, throughput (the time it takes to return to normal activity), the cost of the decon solution, the amount of coverage each unit of decon provides, the disposition of effluent, and the corrosion or destruction of equipment or infrastructure – a clearer understanding of the full life-cycle cost of decontamination comes into focus. When looking across the landscape of decontaminants it is evident that some decontaminants, such as water and bleach, require rather high volumes of liquid while others require smaller volumes. Some decontaminants, such as hydrogen peroxide-based solutions, require higher pHs to be effective and thus can be highly corrosive. Others, such as peracetic acid-based solutions, do not require higher pHs and can be formulated in such a way as to be far less corrosive. Ideally, there would be a solution that is less corrosive and requires smaller volumes. One that can be quickly mixed and requires a short wait and dwell time would also be desirable. By combining a dry decon process, such as using FiberTect wipes to remove the bulk contamination and Dahlgren Decon to neutralise the remaining contamination, a highly efficient process providing a desirable combination of these factors can be achieved. Annual corrosion costs in the United States are estimated to be over $1 trillion. There is no need to utilise corrosive decon technologies to add to this problem. When considering the types of high-value, long-service life assets in play in most decon scenarios, this becomes even more significant. High-value, long lead-time items should not be treated as consumables. Degrading equipment should never be part of the decon process. If the decon process neutralises the threat but is slow, longer contact times are required. Longer contact times lead to greater levels of corrosion, and lifecycle costs are on the rise. Consider the environmental impact of a decon process. Historically, decon has been largely about dilution. The old model of decon was to apply a 50 to 1 ratio of decontaminant (such as water or bleach) to a contaminant. This creates a significant amount of run-off to manage.

Stadium scenario

Consider a release of contamination at a sports stadium accommodating 50,000 people. In this scenario, sprayers would be set up and would dispense large amounts of water. The people will be rinsed, but now there will be a massive amount of contaminated water running into the sewers and into the environment. This creates a new problem that must also be addressed. When the amount of decontaminant left behind as a residual is reduced, the environmental impact and cost to clean-up are also reduced. This is also achieved when the bulk of contamination is captured in a dry wipe that can be disposed of easily, and when surfaces can be misted with decon to eliminate the remaining contaminant. Instead of spraying large volumes of decon and generating run-off, the game has been fundamentally changed in a way that greatly reduces the environmental impact – as well as the cost to restore a site after a contamination event. ❚❙ Chris Hodge has over 20 years’ experience in process improvement, R&D and programme management, including the US Navy’s CBR Defense programme where he developed and patented the Dahlgren Decon formulation.

Organized by Swedish Defence Research Agency, FOI, Sweden

We welcome old and new participants to yet another informative and stimulating symposium in Sweden, this time in Malmö, a beautiful city in the southern part of Sweden. The symposium program will consist of keynote lectures by distinguished speakers addressing scientific and operational progress within the whole field of CBRNe protection. In addition, parallel thematic sessions in scientific and operational areas will be held throughout the symposium. Examples of keynote lectures: • Future biological weapons threats and implication of new technologies such as synthetic biology • Management of the nerve agent incident in Salisbury 2018 • Nuclear emergencies: A challenge for science and society Exhibtion of CBRNe Protection Equipment An exhibtion of CBRNe protection equipment will be arranged in connection with the symposium. The exhibtion will offer symposium participants the opportunity to make themselves acquainted with commercially available state-of-the-art equipment related to CBRNe protection. All participants are invited to visit one of the Swedish Coast Guard combination ships prior the symposium dinner.

the 13 th cbrne protection symposium science for safety & security www.cbw.se CBNW 2019/02 75


Making buildings

resilient Stefano Miorotti and Renato Bonora describe how to improve resilience of buildings against CBRN threats Reducing CBRN vulnerability of critical infrastructures and increasing their capacity for resilience are among the main objectives of the EU and of developed counties. Various methods and procedures are in progress for the experimental evaluation of vapour contamination and revaporisation of chemical agents on indoor building surfaces

Two products are vaporised by separated nozzles which can rotate on a 180° span.

76 CBNW 2019/02



uildings and facilities are especially vulnerable to attack by chemical warfare agents (CWAs). A chemical release could originate from inside the building or be targeted directly into the building via its heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) system.

Contamination of buildings

The contamination of building interiors can be indirect following an exterior airborne release, or when outside contaminants are carried into a building on the shoes or clothing of responders. Due to direct or indirect contamination, airborne CWAs can penetrate porous materials in buildings as primary contamination, producing a residual agent off-gassing hazard. Differences in physical and chemical properties of different CWAs and the porous/absorbent properties of the materials may result in differences in persistence of the chemicals on the

was successively monitored and recorded measured against the concentration of CWA in air emissions. CWAs in vapour phase form were absorbed in substrate. For the uniform and reproducible contamination of substrates, the conditions at the time of exposition and the concentration of vapours of CW agents had to be precisely maintained.

Contamination cell

The contamination cell is a stainless steel cube with an inner side 5 cm in length and a total inner volume of 125 cu cm. Windows on all four sides were closed with the substrate samples attached in a sealed frame. A propeller stirrer keeps the inner concentration of the agent in vapour phase constant. The temperature of the system is kept constant in the environmental chamber. Once the CWA was introduced into the cell, this was closed and placed inside the environmental chamber. The LDV-X for protection of critical infrastructures and decontamination of large volumes.


An experimental investigation was conducted to understand the behaviour of six indoor building surface materials when exposed to saturate vapours of three selected CWAs: sarin (GB), purity 98.7%; soman (GD), purity 90.6%; and sulphur mustard (HD), purity 98.5%.

The materials were: 1.` 2.` 3.` 4.` 5.` 6.`

Plastic floor (PLF) Gypsum board painted (GYB) Raw sandstone (SDS) Painted concrete (PCN) Chemical agent resistant coating (CAR) Butyl rubber (BUR)

materials. The subsequent release of the chemical agent as secondary contamination could cause long-term damage by penetrating the body through the respiratory tract or by skin contact. Data from the investigation was used to set up the Cristanini LDVX (Large Decontamination Volume) system to decontaminate and recover the site where CBRN contamination had occurred. For each material and agent, the contamination level, desorption rates and desorbed agent were assessed when in contact with the skin. The samples were contaminated in the contamination cell with the appropriate amount of selected CWA in vaporised form and at the documented aerial density of contamination. From the evaporation cell the desorption flow of CWAs from the different substrates

power supply to the ventilator was switched on. After the contamination process was completed, the contamination cell was opened and the substrate samples transferred for liquid extraction or placed in the evaporation cells.

Revaporisation cell

Vapours of CWAs were absorbed into the structure of the substrate, which had been contaminated. Agent behaviour provided insight into the chemical agent evaporation and adsorption properties of this substrate. Because desorption rate of agents from substrate is temperature and relative humiditydependent, all agent tests were conducted in the special environmental chamber where the purge air flow temperature and relative humidity is maintained at the required level. During the decontamination experiments, a portion of the substrate was used as a sample for the investigation of CWAs under different conditions.

Determining the contamination `

Contamination and residual contamination was verified by hazard evaluation with regard to interaction with the contaminated material. Such hazards arose when residual or desorbing chemical agent evaporated from the surface or was left within the inner structure of material.

Inhalation and contact hazard

The inhalation hazard was evaluated by determining the


CBNW 2019/02 77

DECONTAMINATION The LDV-X system is electric; electricity can be provided by our Sanijet C.921 or other sources.


€` Vaporised GB agent showed the highest affinity towards SDS €` BUR significantly retained vaporised GB agent in the material structure

GD Agent

€` GD agent showed the highest affinity towards the SDS €` BUR and PLF significantly retained vaporised GD in the material structure

HD Agent

amount of agent desorbed and evaporated from the sample material structure. The samples were placed in the custom-built evaporation cells system and connected to the precision thermostatic device, pre-set according to the required working conditions. Quantities of the respective residual agents released into the airflow within the 24-hour sampling period were correlated to the total amount of agent evaporated in infinite time. ` The contact hazard was measured by holding silicone rubber (SRU) in contact with a test substrate, under constant force for a fixed period. Silicone rubber has been found to mimic human skin for this purpose. The weight placed on top of the rubber test article (65 g.cm-2) for 15 minutes simulated the touch of an unprotected human hand. At the end of the SRU exposure time the tested sample was removed and the SRU sample put into the special extraction vessel, filled with 2-propanol. `The quantities of the respective residual agents released into the contact sampler within a 15-minute desorption period was correlated with the adsorption areas of the applied contact samplers. ` For the three CWAs tested the amounts of agent adsorbed and its persistence on the building materials increased over time, in correlation with the porosity of the exposed surface. As expected, the various building materials behave differently when exposed to the vaporised CWAs. These differences may be rationalized in terms of physiochemical properties such as vapour pressure, diffusion, and solubility in the matrices.

Experimental results

Contamination results showed significant differences between the tested substrate panels’ contamination density when exposed to different agent vapours. As expected, the contamination density on Chemical Agents Resistance Coating (CAR) panels was very low compared to contamination density on Sandstone (SDS) substrate. Butyl Rubber (BUR) substrate showed comparable results to Gypsum Board (GYB). Low contamination density was found on Painted Concrete and Plastic Floor (PLF). The experimental results suggest that in building construction phases, when a high level of resilience capability is required, suitable materials must be selected for their resistance to CWA contamination. Considering the spontaneous desorption ratio 78 CBNW 2019/02

€` HD agent showed a high affinity towards all the substrates (except CAR) €` PLF, BUR and GYB significantly retained vaporised HD in the material structure In general the contamination density found on materials, after exposition to the CWAs vapours, is considerably higher than the contact threshold level.

LDV-X i s used by various armies of the world for its manageability and ease of use.

behaviour, passive protective measures in the form of selected materials will determine the survivability of critical infrastructure – and hence, reduce the decontamination burden. zy Renato Bonora is Professor of Remediation of Contaminated Sites in the Department of Industrial Engineering at the University of Padua, Italy with specialist research areas in CBRN decontamination and demilitarisation and disposal of conventional and special ammunition. Stefano Miorotti is a CBRN Subject Matter Expert with specialist research areas in CBRN threats and decontamination. LDVX is a patented system of Cristanini Company Italy.


Inflatable and Operational Mobile Field Systems for decontamination of people with automatic mixer for decontaminant BX 29.

BX 24

Portable Systems for immediate and operational CBRN decontamination and detoxification.


TSDM Tactical Steam Decon Module






IST Inflatable Shower Tent



IMFL Indipendent Mobile Field Laboratories

Vehicles for identification of chemical and biological agents by various means of analysis.

CBRN decontamination system for sensitive surfaces such as control panels, detectors, platforms of vehicles /boats /aircrafts and electronic equipments such as optical devices, radios, cockpits, etc. SX 34 SYSTEM

VIRE Emergency Rapid Intervention Vehicle



Via Porton, 5 - 37010 RIVOLI VERONESE - VERONA - ITALY Tel. +39 045 6269400 Fax +39 045 6269411 E-mail: cristanini@cristanini.it http: www.cristanini.com



Warrior shows Kevin Cresswell describes Gates Defense Systemsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; next-generation scaleable system to be launched at this summerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ADS INC Warrior Shows, demonstrating interoperability in an asymmetric CBRNe attack environment

T TAC2-5 is a Tactical Awareness Command & Control/ CBRNE solution with multiple capability as a training and simulation system and interoperable tactical tool. It can be used as an effective sales device for multiple sensor and equipment vendors 80 CBNW 2019/02

Above: Screen grab from the Simulation CBRNe EX.

The TAC2-5 (Tactical Awareness Command & Control - CBRNE).

AC2-5 will be incorporated into a simulated terrorist attack on the principal homeport of the Pacific Fleet, consisting of 60 Navy ships, two Coast Guard cutters and a home base to 150 commands. The scenario provides a credible and feasible overview of a possible future threat to the naval base in Coronado and the city of San Diego. By offering a plausible operational situation, this scenario will stimulate participant action and coordination during the ADS Inc event. While purely fictional, the scenario projects what could occur in a multiple asymmetric attack. It is intended to serve as an intellectual excursion around which visitors to the booth can be stimulated to perform actions that can then be reviewed and discussed.


“The objective of the scenario is to provide a common theme to illustrate the TAC2-5. it will function with a 360-degree projection 3D sand table and provide a truly interactive experience in all-hazards simulations for those organizations and individuals participating in the Warrior events.” GATES DEFENSE SYSTEMS CEO MICHAEL GATES

The attack scenario

The postulated exercise environment is based on a sleeper cell of previously imprisoned jihadists released from jail in Syria. They have made their way across Europe, to Mexico and earlier this year crossed the southern border of the US. Here they linked up with US residents who have never been known to police and were operating as a sleeper cell, waiting to be mobilised. The San Diego cell comprises four individuals – all US nationals. All were trained in the use of demolition explosives and incendiary devices at a survival school in the US in 2013. They have received online instruction online of how to poison water and food supplies. It is reported that they are likely to have explosives and at least two types of chemical agent for use against concentrations of people such as cities, large convention centres and military bases. The cell includes two individuals with access to a local University laboratory and the naval base.

Synthetic bioweapon

“We are going to incorporate as many CBRNe features as possible in this simulation, it will be as realistic as we can



The element of surprise, unseen agents, lethal devices, and the constantly changing nature of CBRNe threats makes development of new technologies imperative. ADS’ Special Mission Solutions team has extensive military and CBRNe experience on developing trends, emerging techniques, and equipment innovations. Above: Laptop seized from Tunisian physics and chemistry graduate fighting alongside Daesh in Syria.

In August 2014 a laptop owned by a Tunisian physics and chemistry graduate fighting alongside Daesh in Syria was found. It contained a 19-page document describing the development of the bubonic plague from infected animals – as well as to how to weaponise it. “Use small grenades with the virus, and throw them in closed areas like metros, soccer stadiums, or entertainment centres. Best to do it next to the air-conditioning. It also can be used during suicide operations.”

Purposeful partnerships enhance the ADS advantage— allowing us to quickly field equipment.


TRAINING CAPABILITIES  Scalable system enables you to expand as needed and when budgets permit  Real-time training movement and instrument usage reporting with recording for After-Action Review  Real-time weather  Models of plumes  Real-time sensors  Simulated or real data  Traffic/Evacuation simulation  Ability to prepare exercises on any device that supports a browser  Real-time sharing of information between all teams

“It is permissible to use weapons of mass destruction. Even if it kills all of them and wipes them and their descendants off the face of the Earth.” SAUDI JIHADI CLERIC IMPRISONED IN SAUDI ARABIA

possibly make it,” notes Michael Gates. “The growing threat is the use of synthetic biology, to create antibiotic or antiviral resistant pathogens for use as biological weapons without the need to have access to the virus itself, that will feature.” In assessing the risk that would-be bioterrorists could misuse synthetic genomics to recreate dangerous viruses, a central question is whether they could master the necessary technical skills. They may already have these, as exemplified by a recent case of a rogue subject matter expert. Forces must be trained and fully capable of operating in those CBRN environments to accomplish all assigned missions. Interoperability and synchronisation of data are critical in these joint operations. The TAC2-5 can ‘reach back’ to a command cell with a 360-projection 3D sand table. By combining existing GIS data with next-generation agent-based modelling and ambient computing, customised models of locations and populations can provide a truly interactive experience in all-hazards simulations. Standardised CBRNe response and equipment has been discussed for 20 years. However, with the exception of a small number of countries, most multinational partners frankly have limited capability to operate successfully in a CBRN environment – and use a multitude of different sensors and collection

Above: 3D Projected Sand Box.

 Simple, flexible, scenario creation based upon single or multiple CWA, HazMat & radiological releases  User-defined or sensor based conditions  Real-time variation of plume due to wind direction changes  GIS mapping support  Perfect for exercises and HazMat training  Table top classroom mode for mission rehearsal. methods. If the military resources and training are finite, first responders have even less capability and more restraints. The TAC2-5 allows for interoperability and virtualisation in an easy-to-understand-and-use format. Meanwhile as the exercise shows, our adversaries are patiently waiting in the shadows. ❚❙

Kevin Cresswell is a Security and Defense Consultant with Gates Defense Systems in Los Angeles. 82 CBNW 2019/02

TAC - 5 2




Command & Control


Milipol Paris 2019

Leading Event For Homeland Security and Safety

21st édition

The Global Security Ecosystem

The World’s Leading Network of Homeland Security Events

QATAR 2020


www.milipolqatar.com www.milipolasiapacific.com


NOV. 2019

PARIS NORD VILLEPINTE FRANCE www.milipol.com #MilipolParis

AFTERMATH Hippocrates, the founding father of medical thought and practice, stated that disease was a state of pathos – suffering – and that the body and mind struggle to restore homeostasis (normalcy or balance) – known as ponos. This struggle can be seen in people affected by extreme events


enturies after Hippocrates, scientists, physicians and behavioural health professionals continue to demystify the brain and use evidence-based practice to diagnose a wide spectrum of psychological and psychiatric disorders, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The stress response

Hippocratic teachings and writings on this may have also served as the very

first description of ‘stress’. Stress is the subjective experience that occurs when we perceive that the demands of a situation exceed the ability of our coping mechanisms to meet those demands. The dimensions of the stress response encompasses the full spectrum of the human experience: physical, emotional, cognitive, behavioural, social and spiritual. The perceived, more than the absolute qualities of a stressor, determine its potential impact. The stress response is

PONOS versus PATHOS US Marines assigned to CBRN Force, Indian Head, Md., assist a civilian role-player after a simulated CBRNE incident in November 2009. Exercise Vibrant Response trained forces to assist in saving lives, prevent further injury and provide temporary critical support for community recovery.


84 CBNW 2019/02

AFTERMATH preparedness and response activities. This also applies to refugees, internally displaced persons or asylum seekers, as well as critical incident stress management (CISM) and crisis intervention services for our military forces and the various levels of responders to crises, emergencies and disaster events.

Psychological footprint In this painting by Girodet, Hippocrates refuses the gifts from the Achaemenid Emperor Artaxerxes, who was asking for his services. As the father of medicine Hippocrates may have been the first to identify stress response. ©Wikimedia Commons

Dee L. Ruelas examines the psychosocial effects and implications of CBRN terrorism greatly influenced by thoughts and perceptions of a given situation. When stress is intense, prolonged or chronic, as in a CBRN event, it can also be destructive. This can lead to serious psychological, emotional or physical harm, including the remodelling of the neurochemistry and physiology of the brain. The overwhelming and failure of coping mechanisms are manifested in behaviours and reflected in somatic reactions which result in psychosocial consequences.

Fight or flight

Acute coping involves both threat appraisal and execution of a response to a threat. Acute coping also ties into the physiological response, that is fight or flight – to stressors which can often shut down cognitive functioning. The fight-orflight response is primed for physical self-defence or escape behaviours. It deactivates our higher-order thinking

processes essential for problem solving and solutions to stressful challenges. Higher cognitive functions are often distorted in individuals exposed to traumatic events in interpersonal encounters with violent behaviours, combat, terrorist attacks and disasters. We need to understand that individual resilience is relative, and that not all exposed to horrific and high consequence events will develop a psychiatric/ psychological disorder. Indeed, it has been shown that most people exposed to a disaster situation, even those who are classified as “severely stressed,” do not develop mental health sequelae.

Stress management

Nevertheless, it is of paramount importance to incorporate psychosocialbehavioural health aspects of adversity, major incidents, disasters, catastrophes, extreme events, terrorism and CBRNE events into overall emergency

PSYCHOLOGICAL PATHOLOGIES  Psychosomatic symptoms  Acute and chronic stress reactions  Traumatic stress  Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)  Mass psychogenic illness

©Wikimedia/Manuela Joannou

In CBRNe events, and in other natural and man-made events, the ‘psychological footprint’ is often greater than the physical effects, even if individuals are not directly impacted by the adverse event. This was seen in many natural and man-made disasters, such the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Chernobyl and Three Mile Island reactor accidents, Japan’s combined earthquake, tsunami and Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor disaster, the Love Canal hazardous waste-environmental disaster, BP Gulf oil release, fire and explosion, the London and Boston Marathon bombing attacks, multiple active shooter events, and several other examples.

CBRN and the ‘worried well’

Among the well-studied events particularly related to the intentional use of CBRN agents are the 1995 Tokyo sarin nerve agent attacks. A large percentage of the 5,500 individuals that presented to area hospitals were neither exposed or contaminated to cause signs or symptoms, yet, they were fearful and concerned. Similarly, in the aftermath of the London-based political assassination of ex-FSB agent and Russian dissident Alexander Litvinenko using the rare radioisotope polonium-210, hundreds of citizens contacted the National Health Service hotline with concerns regarding radiation poisoning. The dissemination of regular, accurate, non-alarmist public risk communications is therefore essential to dispel inaccuracies, rumours and allay fears and concerns. This is a tall order in our age of social media and instant footage. In mass-casualty events, we experience the ‘walking wounded’ and the ‘worried well.’ Both of these casualty groups should be assessed and screened for event-related traumatic stress and behavioural issues. Crisis intervention teams are an integral component of mass-casualty event response, and are made available to victims, families and responders. Furthermore, mind-body interrelationships come into play when psychological mechanisms influence physiological  CBNW 2019/02 85

AFTERMATH ©Wikipedia Commons

Left: Kasumigaseki Station on the Marunouchi Line was one of many subway stations affected by the Tokyo sarin attacks.

Below: Radiation hotspot in Kashiwa following the Fukushima nuclear disaster, showing that the after-effects of a massive CBRN event will persist long after its immediate impact.

processes and can lead to acute and chronic disease manifestations. Physiological responses, such as nausea and vomiting, can also mimic the effects of CBRN exposures and confound clinical diagnoses.

CBRNe – huge impact

In events involving armed conflicts, political violence, tactical ultraviolence and terrorism, the perceptions of fear, imminent harm and death are profound as these are intentional acts designed to kill and maim. Mass violence, especially when severely exacerbated by the use of CBRNe agents will create an ultra-fearful aura of the unknown and insidious, as opposed to ‘mere’ bullets and bombs. A CBRNe event to the public, as well as to most responders, is a highly rare, intangible and multidimensional occurrence which carries with it profound uncertainties and implications that affect the health, safety, security, stability and resilience of affected populations and communities. In essence, it is a “shot heard around the world” that may also impose grave geopolitical and economic impacts, including the potential for armed retaliation and further escalation of hostilities. The cascading, domino effects of a CBRNe event may include severe global economic downturns, infrastructure


collapse, civil disturbances, increased criminal activity including hate crimes, environmental contamination, highly restrictive security measures, supply chain disruptions, strict resource allocation, population displacement, suspension of common liberties, governmental mistrust and other societal effects which could generate even more psychological casualties. These after-effects will also be dependent upon the severity and magnitude of an event. In extremis, nuclear detonation: at the other end of the scale, the release of a small amount of CBRN material which affects a few dozen people and properties. The Litvinenko murder was a classic example of the latter, which only involved a tiny amount of lethal

radioisotope targeting one individual. But the implications of decontamination for more than 20 premises and medical sampling from dozens of people potentially affected by its release were significant. So much so that at the public enquiry held in 2015, the barrister representing Litvinenko’s widow, Ben Emmerson QC, described the incident as a “state-sponsored act of nuclear terrorism” on the streets of London. The possibility or actual occurrences of complex, coordinated multifocal attacks add to the mass psychological trauma. Personal losses in persons and property will contribute greatly to the psychosocial impact. In CBRN events, the ultimate casualty may actually be the human psyche and its perception of safety and security. ❚❙

Dee Ruelas is a retired Public Safety Communications Dispatcher. She is a currently a certified emergency medical technician and Instructor with ICSAVE.org and is a former radiological technologist. 86 CBNW 2019/02

J A P A N 18-20 November 2019

Makuhari Messe

The CBRN threat is real. Are you prepared?



Monitor & detect

Warn & report Sample

Safe transport

Laboratory analysis

One of the most crucial and efficient countermeasures you can invest in is early warnings to units and personnel. This is a key factor in limiting the effects of CBRN threats and it makes all the difference. Saab offers a complete Automatic Warning and Reporting system (AWR), designed for quick and easy deployment and, maybe the most important feature of them all, specifically designed for use by non-specialists in the field. www.saab.com/cbrn


Biological threat detection:



ertin Instruments has just released Biotoxis, its new all-in-one qPCR (quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction) kit, which enables multiple simultaneous pathogen detection for B. anthracis (anthrax), Y. pestis (plague)

and F. tularensis (tularaemia). Nowadays, the threat of biological aggression through the deliberate or unintentional release of a biological agent is increasing. It is therefore necessary to use specific tools for infectious agent sampling and search.

Controlling the air quality is indeed decisive for the implementation of operational responses and medical countermeasures, as the main risk of contamination comes from the inhalation of aerosols. To face this critical issue, Bertin has developed a range of air samplers that collect biological particles in the air. This sample is compatible with any type of analysis technique, in order to meet the challenges of both military and civil HAZMAT teams. To ensure a faster response to biological attacks, Bertin also offers Biotoxis, a qPCR all-in-one detection kit that detects three main bio-agents simultaneously: Bacillus anthracis, Yersina pestis and Francisella tularensis. Highly sensitive, this kit is the only one on the market able to detect in one reaction all three agents, giving a quick response in a context of a global bioterrorism. As such, Bertin’s Biotoxis kit provides a simple, rapid and reliable method for detection in air, water, and any biological samples. It is dedicated to CBRN teams, first responders, and R&D labs that work on these three agents for a quick intervention when a biological attack is suspected. ❚❙ biological agents such as anthrax, smallpox, and botulism, and existing and emerging infectious diseases like Ebola, Zika, typhoid, cholera, and influenza. Drug-device combination products also address the threat of exposure to chemical warfare agents and opioid overdoses.

Focus on CBRNE

Emergent extends mission to protect and enhance life – internationally


ince its founding in 1998, Emergent BioSolutions has focused on its mission – to protect and enhance life. The company has evolved over 20 years, addressing not only chemical and biological threats but also existing and emerging infectious diseases, and other threats to public health – such as the ongoing opioid epidemic. Currently, Emergent has eleven

products, over 15 product development programmes, four platform technologies, eight manufacturing facilities, and more than 1,600 employees across 19 locations worldwide. Emergent’s work focuses on providing specialty products for civilian and military populations that address accidental, deliberate, and naturally occurring public health threats. Emergent develops and manufactures vaccines and therapeutics that address

Emergent is expanding internationally to help support the international community’s preparedness goals. This expansion has coincided with a heightened awareness in Europe of the importance of preparedness against CBRNE threats. The European Commission, for example, has a Joint Procurement Agreement, which aims to secure equitable access to medical countermeasures and an improved security of supply, coupled with more balanced pricing for participating EU countries. As the threat of chemical or biological weapons has increased with the advancements in technology, Emergent has prioritised offering protection to firstresponder teams and intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations that operate in potentially high-risk areas. Emergent is proud of the work it does to achieve its mission. ❚❙ CBNW 2019/02 89


Environics’ Naval CBRN Monitoring Systems for biological and radiological threats. Optionally, the monitoring of pressure and air quality of CBRN-protected rooms is also available. The configuration of the Naval CBRN Monitoring System follows the general recommendations for special equipment and systems of naval vessels. This kind of recommendations are given, for example, by Det Norske Veritas for classification. Environics’ Naval CBRN Monitoring Systems’ components are compatible with Classification Society requirements.


BRN agents can occur and be encountered both in peace and wartime missions and a CBRN attack/release can render the whole fleet useless. The likelihood of a CBRN attack increases dramatically as the Navy operates in the green- and brown-water environment (littorals and inland waterways). Thus, the Navy needs to concern itself more

with CBRN threats launched from land or from small craft operating along the coast or near harbours. The Naval CBRN Monitoring System gives operative and situational awareness and guidance for the personnel in order to take the appropriate countermeasures in naval vessels at the time of a threat event. It monitors both outdoor and indoor air of the vessel for chemical (CWAs/TICs) and

Key Benefits of the Naval CBRN Monitoring System

€€ Meets Classification Society requirements €€ Robust product design for use in demanding environmental conditions €€ Fast and reliable response €€ System conceived with proven CBRN expertise €€ Low life-cycle cost €€ Turnkey solution integration €€ Full life-time support. zy

The CBRN threat is real – Are you prepared? it’s a significant challenge to balance these threats with appropriate countermeasures in order to be fully prepared if/when the unthinkable happens.

Early warnings – the key factor

Why CBRN protection?

The world is facing increased threats from general political and religious instability, in regions or between states. Sadly enough, terrorism, pandemic diseases 90 CBNW 2019/02

and an increased presence of biological and chemical substances are becoming a natural part of our everyday lives. Every government has a responsibility to keep their people and society safe, and

One of the most crucial and efficient countermeasures you can invest in is early warnings to units and personnel. This is a key factor in limiting the effects of CBRN threats and it makes all the difference. This is the reason why Saab has decided to offer a complete concept for protection against CBRN agents. The solution is a complete Automatic Warning and Reporting (AWR) system designed for quick and easy deployment and, maybe the most important feature of all, it is specifically designed for use by non-specialists in the field. AWR is a flexible, modular and future-proof solution with sensors and equipment designed for both mobile and fixed installations. zy




The FLIR Griffin G510 GC-MS enables responders to confidently identify unknown chemical threats. It is the ultimate chemical detection toolbox, with guided controls and simple threat alarms. Completely self-contained and mission-ready, the G510 is built for everyone and everywhere.

Learn more at flir.com/G510

Chemical gas cloud detector NEW

2019 | 02

Radiological & nuclear detection instruments

CBNW – Chemical, Biological & Nuclear Warfare


2019 | 02


on the battlefield Portable air samplers & kits for biological detection

SPECIAL REPORT: Salisbury – and the future

MEET US ON THE NEXT CBRN EVENTS NCT Europe, June 25-27, 2019 at Vienna (AUSTRIA) DSEi London Excel, September 10-13, 2019 at London (UNITED KINGDOM) The CBRNe Protection Symposium, September 24-26, 2019 at Malmö (SWEDEN) Milipol Paris, September 19-22, 2019 at Paris (FRANCE)

FEATURED PRODUCT: First Line FiberTect


DRONES: Threats from the air CHEMICAL TERRORISM: Tracking down secret labs TRAINING: The real and the virtual

(page 72)

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CBNW Issue 2 2019  

CBNW Issue 2 2019  

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