|Iran needs 50,000 centrifuges to fuel Bushehr power plant: nuclear chief||
TEHRAN – Iran’s nuclear chief has said that Iran should have 50,000 first-generation centrifuge machines at the Natanz nuclear enrichment facility in order to be able to meet the Bushehr nuclear power plant’s need for nuclear fuel.
“In order to meet the Bushehr power plant’s annual need for fuel, we should have 50,000 centrifuges to produce 30 tons of enriched uranium,” the Fars News Agency on Sunday quoted Ali Akbar Salehi, the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) director, as saying.
Only 9,000 out of 20,000 first-generation centrifuges which have been installed at the Natanz nuclear enrichment facility are operating now, so with the current capacity it takes about eight years to produce nuclear fuel to meet the Bushehr power’s need for one year.
In addition, he said that Iran needs to develop advanced centrifuge machines to be able to produce nuclear fuel for its planned nuclear power plants.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Salehi said that under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Iran is entitled to enrich uranium to a purity level of up to 90 percent, adding that the Islamic Republic will not relinquish its right to uranium enrichment.
Commenting on the talks between Iran and the 5+1 group (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) over Tehran’s nuclear program, he said that the major powers are seeking to restrict the country’s right to pursue its nuclear research program.
Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has recently said that Iran will not halt its nuclear research and development program.
“Consent was given to the nuclear talks in order to break up the hostile atmosphere created by the hegemonistic front against Iran, but all people should be aware that despite the fact that the talks will continue, the Islamic Republic of Iran will not halt its activities with regard to nuclear research and development,” Ayatollah Khamenei said during a meeting with a number of Iranian nuclear officials and experts in Tehran on April 9.
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