Dr. Velayati Outlines Steps to Boost Nuclear Program

Saturday, June 2, 2018 - 16:33

The foreign policy adviser to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Ali Akbar Velayati, has outlined a number of steps Iran can take to strengthen its nuclear program.

As Dr. Velayati noted, Iran will further develop its missile and defense capabilities and will lift limitations on its nuclear program.

Dr. Velayati's first recommendation was to make operational UF6 (uranium hexafluoride), which is a compound used in uranium enrichment. Asghar Zarean, the deputy head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, had previously discussed testing the use of UF6 into more modern IR8 centrifuge machines under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). UF6 is a feedstock for centrifuges. After uranium is mined and processed into yellowcake, it is turned into gas and injected into centrifuges in the form of UF6.

“We can initiate the project to produce UF6 (uranium hexafluoride) which turns into gas at 70 degrees of Celsius and is capable of propelling centrifuges for enriching uranium,” said the Iranian official.

Dr. Velayati also discussed the possibility producing nuclear propulsion systems, in order to build nuclear-powered ships and submarines. Dr. Velayati said a nuclear-powered submarine has the advantage of staying under water for two years.

The use of carbon fiber composites for more advanced IR6 and IR8 centrifuges was another recommendation by Dr. Velayati. He said using the more advanced centrifuges would bring Iran closer to the 190,000 SWU (separative work units) enrichment capacity.

“Bolstering nuclear energy in areas with no limitation should get atop our agenda,” asserted Mr. Velayati. “Continuing negotiations will be based on the conditions set by the Leader and the European should give the assurance that they will buy our oil and will remove our banking problems and US should leave the region to its inhabitants,” reiterated the official.

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