The American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and the Customs Administration of Taiwan’s Ministry of Finance celebrated the official transfer of radiation detection equipment installed at the Port of Kaohsiung during a transition ceremony held on September 30, 2013.
The event, led by AIT Director Christopher J. Marut and Deputy Minister of Finance Wu Tang-chieh, recognized the successful U.S.-Taiwan cooperation in border monitoring and nuclear security and highlighted the strong partnership between the U.S. and Taiwan in affirming a shared commitment to international efforts to prevent nuclear smuggling across the globe. The September 30 ceremony held at the Kaohsiung Customs building marked the official transfer of responsibility for operation and maintenance of sophisticated detection systems from the U.S. to Taiwan, which has worked diligently since the beginning of the partnership to gain the skills and technical expertise necessary to sustain the system long-term.
Since 2007, DOE’s Second Line Defense (SLD) Program has been working to equip the Port of Kaohsiung with radiation detection equipment, providing training to Taiwan Customs officials on how to operate and maintain the system and raising awareness of the terminal operators to the potential danger of nuclear and other radioactive materials outside of regulatory control. SLD has provided three years of sustainability assistance and Taiwan is taking over as-scheduled full responsibility for one of the largest radiation detection systems installed in Asia.
The SLD Program provides radiation portal monitors (for detecting radiation), handheld devices (for identifying the radioactive isotope), optical character recognition technology (for identifying containers), communications equipment (for sending data to a Central Alarm Station), training, and technical support. The entire radiation detection system covers five of the port’s six terminals.