The President's Page: Science and public policy lessons from Vela-Uniform (Guest Editorial)



In late October of this year, the Joint Committee on Atomic Energy of the U.S. Congress convened hearings to review our national capability to monitor a comprehensive treaty banning nuclear testing, one which would include underground tests. In fee decade since the last such hearings were held, a large fraction of American research in seismology has been dedicated to the solution of the problems of detecting, locating, and identifying underground nuclear explosions. Hundreds of papers based on research carried out under Project Vela-Uniform have been presented at AGU meetings during this time. The question now is whether a successful program of research on the technical problems involved, mounted in direct response to an expressed national need, will find its full fruition in the formulation of a national policy that could lead to meaningful progress to ward nuclear disarmament.