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Extreme Threats to the UK

17 September 2020, 9:00

The National Security Strategy and Strategic Defence and Security Review 2015 stated that “it would be irresponsible to assume that the UK will not in the foreseeable future be confronted with the kinds of extreme threat to our security or way of life which nuclear weapons seek to deter”. The replacement programme for the current deterrent was described and this should/will provide for a deterrent for at least 40 years into the future. Up to and beyond this period the nature of the extreme threat to the UK is likely to continue to evolve.

With that in mind, the Royal Aeronautical Society and Royal United Services Institute will host a series of joint conferences, the first one in September 2020 considering extreme threats to the UK, beyond the near-term future, up to 40 years into the future. The second conference in the series due to take place in 2021 will examine technology choices associated with deterring or countering the extreme threats, identified in the first.

Therefore, this conference seeks to establish the nature of extreme threat that could confront the UK. Discussion will centre around the deterrence or countering of the implementation of the threat, either by nuclear or other technological methods. Topics to be discussed include:

- National Policy
- Quantum Computing
- Cyber
- Space
- Mind Control
- Radiological Devices
- Chemical
- Biological
- Nuclear
- Electromagnetic Pulse
- Large Terrorist Attacks
- Directed Energy

Tom Plant, Director, Proliferation and Nuclear Policy, Royal United Services Institute
Dr Tracy Vine, Group Leader, Weapons Science, QinetiQ
Alexandra Stickings, Research Fellow, Space Policy and Security, Royal United Services Institute
Dr Gemma Attrill, Senior Principal Scientist, Ministry of Defence, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory
Dr Cerys Rees, Fellow, CB Analysis & Attribution, Dstl
Ilyas Khan, Chief Executive Officer, Cambridge Quantum Computing
Professor Bryn James, Senior Fellow, Dstl 


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