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Forensic Science Program

The Forensic Science Program promotes equity in the criminal justice system by strengthening the scientific basis of forensic methods and practices so that evidence is appropriately collected, accurately analyzed, and effectively communicated.



Accelerating the development of science-based measurement methods, standards, tools, and assessments to underpin reliable, accurate, interoperable, and validated forensic analysis.


Strengthening the scientific foundations of forensic methods and practices by documenting the empirical evidence that supports and underpins their reliability; evaluating their capabilities and limitations; and identifying knowledge gaps and areas for future research.


Strengthening the nation's use of forensic science by facilitating the development of technically sound standards and guidelines and encouraging their adoption and use throughout the forensic science community.

News and Updates


collage of images from the WTC disaster and the NYC skyline with a representation of a DNA molecule and the letters DNA,
Credit: N. Hanacek/NIST

Reflections on Assisting With the 9/11 World Trade Center DNA Identifications
September 1, 2021
Due to the fragmentation of bodies that occurs with high-velocity plane crashes and building collapses, DNA became a primary means of identifying many of the remains recovered from 9/11.



John Butler in his lab in front of a computer monitor with graphics on it
Credit: NIST

DNA Mixture Interpretations: A Q&A With NIST’s John Butler
JULY 28, 2021
Whether from skin cells, saliva, semen or blood, DNA from a crime scene is often collected and tested in a lab to see if a suspect’s DNA is likely a contributor to that sample or not.



masked man with baseball cap seated at a lab bench pipetting samples
Credit: E. Sisco/NIST

Improving Forensic Chemistry: A Q&A With NIST's Ed Sisco
APRIL 28, 2021
… Tell us about your career path thus far. How did you get involved in forensic science? When trying to decide what to study in college, the only two majors that stuck out to me were forensic science and landscaping architecture. I decided to pursue …


Forensic Science Research PROGRAM MANAGER

Forensic Science Foundation Studies PROGRAM MANAGER

Forensic Science Standards PROGRAM MANAGER