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News number: 9203180584

15:49 | 2013-06-09

Nuclear

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Iran Installs Main Container of Arak Heavy Water Reactor

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran Installed the main and upper container of Arak heavy water reactor in the Central province of Markazi in the presence of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Sunday.



Tehran took an important step towards the completion of the reactor by installing its upper container.

Arak heavy water reactor uses natural uranium to produce radio medicines and it is planned to replace the Tehran research reactor gradually.

The reactor is resistant to strong blasts as well as 8-magnitude earthquakes.

Earlier today, Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Fereidoun Abbasi announced that the country plans to inject virtual fuel into Arak heavy water reactor in Central Iran by the end of the current Iranian year (March 20).

"Arak heavy water reactor will receive virtual fuel by the end of the year 1392 (March 21, 2013-March 20, 2014)," Abbasi said on the sidelines of a visit by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to the heavy water reactor in Markazi province on Sunday.

"We hope that we can go through the relevant phases and carry out the necessary tests to make sure of the proper operation of this reactor and start its full launch next year," he added.

"Construction of this reactor means that we could build a power reactor using light water reactors, which can yield product," Abbasi added.

Early 2011, Iran unveiled home-made deuterated compounds in a ceremony at Arak heavy water reactor attended by senior Iranian nuclear officials and diplomats and envoys from different world countries and groupings.

The compounds can be used in the production of many medicines in a number of ways, including enhancing the effects of some drugs. It also can be used in making optic fiber and some polymers.

The ordinary isotope of hydrogen has been replaced with deuterium in deuterated compounds.

The deuterated compounds can be used as solvents in tracing new synthetic chemicals using the NMR technique, as well as helping scientists monitor and evaluate complicated chemical reactions.

The compounds produced in Arak heavy water plant enjoy high quality, making Iran self-sufficient in the production of deuterium-needed products.