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Operations Support Directorate

The Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) Office was established in December 2017 by consolidating primarily the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office, a majority of the Office of Health Affairs, as well as other DHS elements.

For current information related to CWMD, please visit the following:

To conduct the mission carried out by the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO), it is imperative to provide unparalleled support to domestic operational partners in building radiological and nuclear detection programs and capabilities across federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial entities.  This critical mission need is carried out through the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office’s Operations Support Directorate. 


The Operations Support Directorate supports the development of domestic radiological and nuclear detection programs to strengthen federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial stakeholders’ detection capabilities.


Through comprehensive outreach, engagement, training, exercises, assistance, and sustainment services, the Operations Support Directorate helps stakeholders mitigate risks in their respective communities.  Working together, these efforts help to develop and integrate local, regional, and national radiological and nuclear detection programs across the Nation.


Assistance provides direct support to stakeholders and facilitates a series of planning activities throughout the radiological and nuclear detection program development process to help establish a sustainable statewide or regional program framework.  Assistance helps launch new programs and review and enhance existing programs.  This process can be tailored to agency needs, from statewide efforts to regional and local jurisdictions.


Training provides standardized, technical and operational training support to agencies interested in building their own organizational radiological and nuclear detection capability. This is accomplished by leveraging existing capabilities of law enforcement and Department of Energy subject matter experts, as well as through long-standing relationships with federal training centers, agencies, and organizations.  Working with federal training partners and external stakeholders, the Operations Support Directorate is developing nationally-recognized guidelines, standards, training, and qualifications to more effectively increase radiological and nuclear detection, operation, and planning capabilities.


Exercise assistance provides full support tabletop or operations-based exercises to evaluate federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial agencies’ radiological and nuclear detection capabilities, from emerging individual jurisdictions to large robust multi-jurisdictional programs across regions. Exercises can assist in validating that detection equipment is properly employed; alarm adjudication and response processes are executed in accordance with applicable concept of operations and standard operating procedures; and response notifications are properly communicated to appropriate government agencies. The exercise team assists in the development and implementation of improvement plans and protocols, as well as the design, development, and conduct of exercises for stakeholder entities in compliance with Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program methodology. Exercise support is available to help state and local jurisdictions develop, test, and improve their own radiological and nuclear detection capabilities, and assist in preparing them for potential integration with federal programs and assets.

Securing the Cities

The Securing the Cities program seeks to design and implement or enhance existing architectures for coordinated and integrated detection and interdiction of nuclear and other radioactive materials that are out of regulatory control and which may be used as a weapon within high-risk metropolitan areas. The program issues financial assistance and support to state and local stakeholders’ efforts to build a regional nuclear detection architecture that may be integrated with federal efforts.

Joint Analysis Center

The Joint Analysis Center provides awareness of the nuclear threat; offers technical support to federal, state, tribal, territorial, and local authorities; and facilitates radiological and nuclear alarm adjudication from detection events. In addition, the Joint Analysis Center consolidates and shares radiological and nuclear detection information and databases with federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial agencies. Through a secure web interface, the team collaborates with mission stakeholders and allows users to view detection information, detectors, situational awareness reports, and other overlays (e.g. critical infrastructure) in a geospatial viewer.

Mobile Detection Deployment Units

Mobile Detection Deployment Units are used as national radiological and nuclear detection “surge” assets, designed to supplement first responders’ existing radiological and nuclear detection and reporting capabilities, especially in support of national-level and other special security events.  Each Mobile Detection Deployment Unit contains radiation detection equipment for approximately 20-40 emergency responders, housed in a mobile trailer package.  Mobile Detection Deployment Units are strategically located across the United States and are maintained and operated through an agreement with the Department of Energy Radiological Assistance Program.  Each deployment is accompanied by technical support staff to train personnel on the use of equipment and to help integrate these capabilities into existing operations.

Last Updated: 10/21/2021
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