Lithuania also to monitor nuclear tests carried out in the world2017-05-23
The Lithuanian Geological Survey (LGT) under the Ministry of Environment has just established a special seismic monitoring division to register nuclear tests carried out in the world. According to LGT Director Jono Satkūnas, this division will be an addition to the international seismic monitoring system of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation (CTBTO) of which Lithuania is a member.
Our country signed this Treaty in 1996. At present, there are 166 signatory states already. The CTBT will enter into full force after all the world states have signed and ratified it. The aim is to achieve this by 2020.
The CTBT bans tests of nuclear weapons and any other nuclear explosions in any part of the Earth. From 1945 to 1996, more than 2 000 nuclear tests were carried out worldwide (US, Soviet Union, Prance, United Kingdom and China). Since the signing of the CTBT in 1996, nuclear arms have been tested by India, Pakistan and North Korea. Last year North Korea carried out two nuclear tests. Thanks to the CTBT monitoring station network, all information related to them was provided in due time, enabling the governments of other countries for a rapid and resolute response to North Korea’s actions.
The CTBT international monitoring system includes global seismic monitoring, hydro-acoustic, radionuclide and infra-sound networks. The monitoring data are stored, analysed and distributed by the International Data Centre based in the CTBT technical sector in Vienna.
One of the CTBT requirements for a signatory state is to establish a National Data Centre. In Lithuania, this is the concern of the State Nuclear Power Safety Inspectorate. The seismic monitoring division set up by the LGT with be one of the units of the National Data Centre. It will become part of the seismic station network of the CTBT international monitoring system which has 50 main seismic monitoring stations of a very wide range and 120 support stations around the world. This division has the necessary seismic monitoring computer equipment transferred by the CTBTO free of charge. This equipment will enable the quick and precise recording of both natural seismic events and those caused by humans.