Virtual Library

Our virtual library is an online repository of all of the reports, papers, and briefings that IST has produced, as well as works that have influenced our thinking.

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Reports

Unlocking U.S. Technological Competitiveness: Public-Private Misalignments in Biotechnology, Energy, and Quantum Sectors

Ben Purser, Pavneet Singh

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Reports

Effects of Electromagnetic Pulses on Communication Infrastructure: An IST Primer

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Reports

How Does Access Impact Risk? Assessing AI Foundation Model Risk Along a Gradient of Access

Zoë Brammer, along with contributors from the AI Foundation Model Access Working Group

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Fact Sheet

DOD and SBA Launch the Small Business Investment Company Critical Technology (SBICCT) Initiative

Strategic Balancing Initiative

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Fact Sheet

White House Releases Outbound Investment Executive Order

Strategic Balancing Initiative

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Reports

Strengthening Resilience in 21st Century Crisis Communications

Alexa Wehsener, Sylvia Mishra

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Fact Sheet

DoD Releases the National Defense Science and Technology Strategy

Strategic Balancing Initiative

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We also welcome additional suggestions from readers, and will consider adding further resources as so much of our work has come through crowd-sourced collaboration already. If, for any chance you are an author whose work is listed here and you do not wish it to be listed in our repository, please, let us know.

SUBMIT CONTENT

Effects of Electromagnetic Pulses on Communication Infrastructure: An IST Primer

SUMMARY

It is important to acknowledge that the blast effects of a nuclear detonation are horrific and, in such a scenario, it is right that emergency response (including communications) go first to support those people who are affected. IST’s Innovation and Catastrophic Risk team is focused on one aspect of crisis prevention and, in the worst case, response: the international prevention and de-escalation of catastrophic nuclear risk through additive communications solutions.

CATALINK is IST’s Innovation and Catastrophic Risk initiative that proposes just such an additive communications solution. This concept presents a framework through which nuclear-armed states can discuss how to mature the current options for intra-state nuclear crisis communications. In order to help advance such discussion, it is important to examine in detail the extensive technical needs of such a communications solution.

As a first step, this primer details the effects of a nuclear detonation on communication devices, infrastructure, and networks to highlight the capabilities needed in an additive technical solution for international crisis communications. As a result, this primer focuses on the electromagnetic interference, specifically electromagnetic pulses (EMPs) and associated radiation, generated by a nuclear detonation. 

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