Iran’s Nuclear Program: Status

June 13, 2016


Paul K. Kerr


Congressional Research Service


Iran’s nuclear program began during the 1950s. Construction of a U.S.-supplied research reactor, called the Tehran Research Reactor (TRR), located in Tehran began in 1960; the reactor went critical in 1967. During the 1970s, Tehran pursued an ambitious nuclear power program; according to contemporaneous U.S. documents, Iran wanted to construct 10-20 nuclear power reactors and produce more than 20,000 megawatts of nuclear power by 1994. Iran also began constructing a light-water nuclear power reactor near the city of Bushehr and also considered obtaining uranium enrichment and reprocessing technology.