Information barrier experimental: Toward a trusted and open-source computing platform for nuclear warhead verification

Moritz Kütt, Malte Göttsche, Alexander Glaser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Trusted measurement systems are critical for the verification of future arms-control treaties that involve confirming the authenticity of nuclear warheads on the basis of their radiation signatures. Several research efforts have produced prototype systems, but their designs are typically not published in detail, making it difficult to enable trust in these devices. The Information Barrier Experimental (IBX) is a new prototype built around the Red Pitaya computing platform using passive gamma spectroscopy. It is the first such platform designed to help a broad research community study vulnerabilities and define the required specifications for a common, trusted inspection system. It is low-cost, simple to assemble, and enables comprehensive hardware and software authentication studies. The device follows a digital data acquisition approach, which significantly reduces the number of components between scintillator and spectrum output. Measurements demonstrate that this approach is technically feasible and produces excellent measurement results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)185-190
Number of pages6
JournalMeasurement: Journal of the International Measurement Confederation
StatePublished - Jan 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Digital pulse processing
  • Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) device
  • Gamma spectroscopy
  • Information barrier
  • Nuclear arms control


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