Nuclear Chemistry

The Nuclear Chemistry  Division addresses the complex questions relating to nuclear issues/related topics on behalf of the Confederation and the cantons to protect the population. It observes international developments in its military and civilian use and elaborates additional expertise. The division conceives and evaluates scenarios, including terrorist ones. All findings are incorporated into respective threat analyses.

The division has an extensive collection of technical instruments, organised into two ISO/EN 17025 accredited test authorities that serve to assess a specific danger or to extensively survey in the normal situation (monitoring) or even exceptional situation (incident). The Nuclear Chemistry  Division is nationally well networked and its expertise is also applied in international organisations.


In an exceptional situation entailing increased radioactivity in the environment the mobile resources of the N Emergency Response Team can be called in by the FEDERAL emergency organisation. In the event of a major nuclear or radiological incident, the Nuclear Chemistry Division would not have enough staff to operate both special laboratory and the N Emergency Response Team. For over 20 years, a lab team of military conscripts has been assigned to Spiez Laboratory for an exceptional NBC incident. Through close collaboration with the Armed Forces Joint Staff and our partner the NBC-EOD, its specialist team, the NBC Defence Lab 1 (military laboratory) can be called up. This unit has been trained to operate the measuring instruments at Spiez Laboratory, attends refresher courses each year and is rapidly deployable.

Dr. Mario Burger Head:
Dr. Mario Burger

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