TEHRAN, Oct. 23 (Xinhua) -- Head of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran Ali-Akbar Salehi said Iran will operate a production line of enriched UO2 (uranium dioxide) in three months, Tehran Times daily reported on Wednesday.
The enriched UO2 would be used to provide nuclear fuel for the Bushehr nuclear power plant, said Salehi.
UO2 is a black, radioactive and crystalline powder that naturally occurs in the mineral uraninite. It is used in fuel rods for nuclear reactors.
On Sept. 23, Iran took over control of Bushehr nuclear power plant from Russia. Salehi said that during the first two-year period, Russian engineers would provide support to Iranian technicians, who after two years would completely control the plant.
Construction of the Bushehr plant began in 1975 by several German companies. However, work was halted when the United States imposed an embargo on hi-tech supplies to Iran after the 1979 revolution. Russia signed a contract with Iran to complete the construction of the plant in 1998.
In accordance with the contract, Russia started to deliver nuclear fuel to the Bushehr plant in December 2007 and pledged to provide fuel to the 1,000-megawatt plant for 10 years. Under the agreement the spent fuel from the plant would be sent back to Russia.