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Chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear hazards

CBRN is an acronym for chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear. It is used to refer to situations in which a threat is manifested by the presence or use of any of such agents. Sometimes the acronym is extended to CBRNE, where the E refers to the threat of malicious use of explosives.

In the field of CBRN and explosives detection, the JRC provides scientific/technical support to Commission services on measurement and standardisation, based on specific expertise in measurement and testing - in chemistry, physics, analytical sciences, measurement technologies and standardisation.

In view of the JRC expanding work the field of aviation security, explosives detection and CBRN threats, the JRC is currently developing its experimental capacity in this field. It is intended to establish a testing facility that will equip the European Commission with in-house, independent capability to test new technologies and equipment, particularly for the detection of explosives.

The JRC's work in detection of explosives is part of a broader support package called the European Reference Network for Critical Infrastructure Protection (ERNCIP).

The EU Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence

The EU Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence (CBRN CoE) is an initiative of the EU launched in May 2010 for the period 2009-2013. Financed by the EU under the Instrument for Stability, the CBRN CoE aims to implement a coordinated strategy at the international level to address the mitigation of and preparedness against risks, either of an intentional, accidental or natural origin, related to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) materials or agents. The CBRN CoE is jointly managed by the JRC and the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI).

Hazard Mitigation

Within the international security context, the prevention and mitigation of Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) hazards has become an important area of activity. The EU is making significant contributions to the international effort to mitigate the threat and risks associated with these materials. The JRC is implementing several RN actions of the EU CBRN Action Plan in the areas of detection technologies, forensics, response and training.