Magazine article Arms Control Today

North Korea's Nuclear Futures: Technology and Strategy

Magazine article Arms Control Today

North Korea's Nuclear Futures: Technology and Strategy

Article excerpt

Joel S. Wit and Sun Young Ahn, US-Korea Institute at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, March 2015

This report, from the US-Korea Institute at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, explores potential future paths of North Korea's nuclear weapons program. Predicting a significant expansion for the program over the next five years, the authors identify minimal, moderate, and rapid growth scenarios based on a variety of different assumptions. From an existing arsenal of an estimated six to eight plutonium warheads capable of deployment on short- and medium-range ballistic missiles, the authors project growth by 2020 to an arsenal of between 10 weapons with 10-kiloton yields to 100 weapons with average yields of more than 20 kilotons on short-, medium-, and longer-range missiles. …

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