Iran planning to upgrade centrifuges at Natanz
Iran has sent a letter to the IAEA informing it that it plans to use more modern, faster centrifuges
to enrich uranium (but 'only' to 5%) at its Natanz facility outside Tehran.
The letter said that Iran would use the new
centrifuges - a model called IR2m - at a unit in the Natanz plant where Iran is
enriching uranium to a fissile concentration of up to five percent, according to
an IAEA communication to member states seen by Reuters.
of the Agency received a letter from the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran
(AEOI) dated 23 January 2013 informing the Agency that 'centrifuge machines type
IR2m will be used in Unit A-22' at the Fuel Enrichment Plant (FEP) at Natanz,"
the IAEA communication said.
Iran says it refines uranium to power a
planned network of nuclear power stations. But the West fears that the material,
if enriched much further to 90 percent, could be used for weapons. Iran says its
nuclear program has only peaceful goals.
The Islamic republic has for
years been trying to develop more centrifuges that are more efficient than the
breakdown-prone 1970s IR-1 models it now uses for production.
The sanctions are really having an effect on Iran's desire to pursue a nuclear weapon, aren't they? What could go wrong?
Labels: Iran sanctions regime, Iranian nuclear threat, Natanz, uranium enrichment