After having achieved a complete cycle for producing and processing nuclear fuel for power plants, Iran says it is set to move toward obtaining nuclear fusion technology.
Speaking to Fars news agency on Tuesday, secretary of the Scientific Cooperation Council of Iran’s Atomic Energy Agency, Behzad Soltani said “nuclear fusion is the future plan for the global nuclear energy which can provide energy for human beings for at least 7,000 years.”
Fusion — which extracts energy from nuclear reactions with a process akin to how light and heat are produced by the sun — has been studied for decades, but is yet to go commercial.
While nuclear fusion creates no greenhouse gas and produces far less hazardous waste than fission, the reactors used in the process become radioactive and its waste would still require special disposal.
Referring to global efforts to obtain the know-how, Soltani said several years have passed since the start of the project on the global stage.
“Currently, industrial countries of the world are seeking to finalize this project and commercialize the nuclear fusion technology.”
“We believe that certain countries should not have a monopoly on nuclear fusion; therefore in the Atomic Energy Agency along with other nuclear technology plans, we are moving toward nuclear fusion and we make every effort to speed up this process,” the Iranian nuclear official added.
In April, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad declared that the country had achieved a complete cycle for producing and processing nuclear fuel for its under-construction power plants.
Tehran says its nuclear program is aimed at the civilian applications of the technology and has called for the removal of weapons of mass destruction from around the globe. Western countries, however, accuse it of seeking nuclear weaponry.