Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Materials

Advanced Nuclear Fuels and Fuel Cycles

Current status and future trends in Highly Enriched Uranium


Objective: To improve the awareness of Member States on current status and reactor utilization of HEU.

Contact Point: Uddharan BASAK.

Recent arms control agreements have resulted in reduction nuclear weapons which inturn has produced excess stockpiles of HEU. Considering proliferation potential of HEU, management, control and disposition of this fissile material has become a primary focus of nuclear non-proliferation efforts worldwide. To lessen the proliferation threat of excess HEU stockpiles, the USA had agreed to purchase several tonnes of excess Russian HEU down-blended to Low Enriched Uranium (LEU). Proliferation concerns about HEU have also resulted in a global effort to convert research reactors from HEU to LEU fuel to minimize civilian use of HEU. A technical document is prepared addressing the HEU management issues viz., declared excesses, non-proliferation programme, option for use of the HEU stockpiles including disposition programmes. Also addressed are the influence of LEU derived from surplus HEU on global market of uranium, technical issues associated with utilization and disposition of HEU.

Refer for details: IAEA-TECDOC-1452: Management of High Enriched Uranium for Peaceful Purposes: Status and Trends .

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