Biology- Database a likely lifesaver . . .

Highly effective anti-virus programs for computers are providing the inspiration for a system to protect people from deadly genetically engineered biological bugs. While the National Cyber Security Division's US-CERT provides cyber security updates and tools to safeguard computers within federal agencies, industry, state and local governments and the public, no such program exists to protect the public from harmful biological threats. That could change, however, with BioSITES, the vision of Department of Energy Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers Robert Cottingham and Tom Brettin. "Through CERT, we have a giant knowledge base that provides a national infrastructure to protect our computers from viruses," Brettin said. "In the same mold, we see BioSITES as a system to defend against potentially lethal bio-engineered microorganisms.

Sensors - Setting standards . . .

By testing radiation detection equipment and helping establish national and international standards, a team of Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers protects the people who keep the nation safe. The Graduated Rad/Nuc Detector Evaluation and Reporting program fulfills a Congressional mandate to set capability standards and establish a test and evaluation program for radiation and nuclear detectors. "The basic idea is to ensure that we identify the functional limitations of radiological and nuclear detection equipment," said Pete Chiaro, who leads numerous international and American National Standards Institute standards committees. "A key goal is to make sure our soldiers and front line officers have what they need to keep them and us safe.

Ron Walli
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory