TribLIVE

| USWorld

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Iran to add hundreds of centrifuges to nuclear plan

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

By The Washington Post
Thursday, Jan. 31, 2013, 9:22 p.m.
 

Iran has told U.N. nuclear officials that it plans to add potentially hundreds of next-generation centrifuge machines to its main uranium-enrichment plant, a move that could dramatically boost its ability to produce the fuel used in nuclear power plants and — potentially — in nuclear bombs.

The notification came in a letter last week in which Iran said it would begin installing the more powerful centrifuges at its Natanz plant south of Tehran, which already has been enriching uranium for nearly a decade, according to a Western diplomat briefed on the plans.

The new machine, the IR2M, is believed to be vastly superior to the clunky, 1970s-era IR1 machine that Iran uses, giving Iran the ability to produce up to four times as much enriched uranium per machine. Iran claims the enriched uranium would be used exclusively for nuclear power plants, but U.S. officials suspect that Iran is using nuclear energy to keep open its options to pursue a weapons program.

Iran's Jan. 23 letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency did not identify how many centrifuges it planned to install, or when the changes would occur. But U.N. officials inferred from the letter that hundreds of machines, if not more, would be added to one wing of the Natanz plant, according to the official, who insisted on anonymity in discussing confidential correspondence. The U.N. watchdog agency informed member states about Iran's plans in an internal memo and said it was pressing Iranian officials for details, the diplomat said.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. Comets hold life building blocks
  2. Al-Qaida group in Syria targeted by U.S.-led coalition airstrikes
  3. Senate to grill United Nations agency chief Amano on Iran nuclear pact
  4. Firebombing kills Palestinian toddler, wounds family; Jewish settlers blamed
  5. ISIS suspected in abduction of Indian citizens in Libya
  6. Dissension cracks Taliban leadership
  7. Experimental Ebola vaccine could stop virus in West Africa
  8. Israelis remember how summer conflict affected beach ritual
  9. WikiLeaks says U.S. spied on another ally: Japan
  10. Turkey aims guns at Kurdish rebels
  11. Debris on French island possibly that of missing Malaysia Airlines flight