NNSA's Nuclear / Radiological Advisory Team (NRAT) provides an emergency response capability for on-scene scientific and technical advice for both domestic and international nuclear or radiological incidents. It is led by a Senior Energy Official who runs the NNSA field operation and who coordinates NNSA follow-on assets as needed. The NRAT is composed of scientists and technicians who can provide advice or conduct limited operations.
The NRAT’s mission is to provide nuclear and radiological expert advice to the coordinating agency in charge of the radiological or nuclear incident. The NRAT is the NNSA part of the interagency advisory team that deploys with the Domestic Emergency Support Team in support of the Federal Bureau of Investigation  , or the Foreign Emergency Support Team when deployed under the auspices of the State Department  . The NRAT is also the primary NNSA team for conducting sophisticated radiological search and identification operations aboard ships at sea.
Steps in the NRAT Response
The NRAT deploys in response to requests made through government channels to the Office of Emergency Response. Upon approval by the NNSA, the NRAT becomes a critical advisory or operational component of the U.S. government response.
The NRAT can provide advisory and operational capabilities to an incident anywhere in the world. The team can conduct radiological search and provide on-site expert analysis of detector readings. The NRAT can conduct at-sea radiological search operations, which require specialized training, equipment and techniques. The NRAT also deploys with robust a communications suite with which it can reach back to NNSA's Triage  and Home Teams from anywhere in the world.
In summary, the NRAT provides:
- Scientific and technical advice for radiological or nuclear incidents;
- Radiological search and identification using standard and highly specialized equipment;
- At-sea radiological search operations;
- Communications links; and
- Capability for both domestic and foreign deployment.