Iranian Entity: Lashkar Ab'ad
|Also Known As:|
|Soheilieh T-Junction, Karaj-Hashtgerd Road, Chahardangeh District (40 km west of Tehran)|
|First visited by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in August 2003; according to IAEA, contains a laser laboratory belonging to the Research and Development Division of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI); Iranian officials told the IAEA that the laboratory had originally focused on laser fusion research and laser spectroscopy but that the focus had changed; in August 2003, the IAEA observed production and testing of copper vapor lasers of up to 100 watts but did not find activities directly related to laser spectroscopy or enrichment; however, between October 27 and November 1, 2003, Iran acknowledged that at Lashkar Ab?ad a pilot plant for laser enrichment had been set up in 2000; Iranian officials admitted that uranium laser enrichment tests were conducted at Lashkar Ab'ad between October 2002 and January 2003 using 22kg of the 50kg of natural uranium imported in 1993; enrichment experiments were carried out using the Atomic Vapor Laser Isotope (AVLIS) technique, with equipment imported from foreign suppliers; in October 2003, Iranian officials disclosed a series of contracts for information and equipment related to AVLIS and Molecular Laser Isotope Separation (MLIS) techniques; under a 1991 contract with a foreign supplier, Iran received a laser laboratory capable of enriching uranium up to 3% U-235; the laboratory consisted of two parts: a laser spectroscopy lab (LSL) and a comprehensive separation lab (CSL); this equipment was moved from the Tehran Nuclear Research Center (TNRC) to Lashkar Ab?ad in October 2002; in 1998, Iran contracted with a different foreign supplier to obtain information related to laser enrichment and relevant equipment, including copper vapor lasers (CVLs) of up to 150kW; the contract was not fully completed because some export licences were not obtained; enrichment experiments were carried out using equipment from LSL and CSL, and a large vacuum chamber that was already located at Lashkar Ab?ad; according to Iran, the average level of enrichment achieved in these experiments was between 8-9% and as high as 15%; waste from the experiments, along with the dismantled equipment and uranium metal were moved to Karaj in May 2003.
According to the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), a laboratory which works as a substation for the main site in Natanz in the nuclear enrichment process; according to NCRI, could be used as a substitute for Natanz in case of military strikes or other interruptions in its operations; according to NCRI, has a surface area of 80 hectares; according to NCRI, several centrifuge machines have been installed in a 50-by-30 meter hall for testing; according to NCRI, operates under the cover of the Noor-Afza-Gostar Company, which is one of the largest companies run by the Atomic Energy Organization.
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