During the Soviet-era, he was employed at the nuclear installation known as NII-1011 located in the closed city of Chelyabinsk-70. There he worked on miniaturizing detonations, which led to discoveries in nanodiamonds.
In 1995, he began networking with Iran to develop their nanodiamond industry. In 2011 the Washington Post released an article alleging that he provided expertise in the development of nuclear detonators for the country at their Physics Research Centre between 1996 and 2002, and cited a report published by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Danilenko denied these claims and in November the IEAE published an annex to their original publication confirming that his assistance in nanodiamond development was purely for civilian purposes.
- "'Nanodiamonds ain't nuclear bombs'", Press TV. November 12, 2011. Accessed November 12, 2011
- "Russian scientist Vyacheslav Danilenko’s aid to Iran offers peek at nuclear program", Joby Warrick. Washington Post. November 13, 2011. Accessed November 14, 2011
- "Ultrananocrystalline diamond: synthesis, properties, and applications", Olga A. Shenderova, Dieter M. Gruen. William Andrew, 2006. ISBN 0-8155-1524-3, ISBN 978-0-8155-1524-1. p. 335
- "On "Nuclear Iran" Allegations: Nanodiamonds Ain't Nuclear Bombs", Moon of Alabama. November 7, 2011. Accessed November 14, 2011
- "Iran nuclear report: IAEA claims Tehran working on advanced warhead", Julian Borger. The Guardian. November 7, 2011. Accessed November 14, 2011