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Nuclear News - 11/29/2005
RANSAC Nuclear News, November 29, 2005
Compiled By: Julia Myers


A.  Submarine Dismantlement
    1. Navy commander begins inspection of Pacific Fleet in Kamchatka, ITAR-TASS (11/26/2005)
    2. Delta-IV "Ryazan" to get service lifetime extension , Bellona Foundation (11/25/2005)
    3. First contract on rehabilitation project in Gremikha base signed , Bellona Foundation (11/23/2005)
    4. Russia Still To Unload Fuel From 50 Submarines , Radio Free Europe (11/23/2005)
B.  US-Russia
    1. Russia welcomes breakthrough in cooperation with NASA , RIA Novosti (11/28/2005)
    2. Russians fear nuclear expert will spill secrets, Jason Cato, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (11/27/2005)
C.  Russia-Iran
    1. Officials May Discuss Russian Offer To Make Nuclear Fuel for Iran , Brooks Tigner, Defense News (11/29/2005)
    2. Tehran ready to reply to Russia , Vladimir Benazarov, RIA Novosti (11/28/2005)
    3. Iran's nuclear file may be sent to UN Security Council - Lavrov , RIA Novosti (11/24/2005)
    4. Russian nuclear plan for Iran unites UN watchdog, Mark Heinrich and Louis Charbonneau, Reuters (11/24/2005)
    5. Iran denies receiving Russian uranium enrichment proposals , RIA Novosti (11/23/2005)
    6. Bushehr NPP not ready to get nuclear fuel - official , RIA Novosti (11/22/2005)
D.  Russia-North Korea
    1. Russia may supply electricity to China, N., S. Korea , RIA Novosti (11/29/2005)
E.  Nuclear Forces
    1. Russian missile hits Far East test range targets , RIA Novosti (11/29/2005)
    2. U.S. Analyzes New Russian Warhead, Global Security Newswire (11/22/2005)
F.  Nuclear Industry
    1. Radiation normal at Novovoronezh NPP, ITAR-TASS (11/29/2005)
    2. China's NPP to get unique Russian containment system , Alexei Yefimov, RIA Novosti (11/28/2005)
    3. Former Far East presidential envoy to get new appointment , RIA Novosti (11/28/2005)
    4. Russia must double uranium output by 2020 - TVEL , RIA Novosti (11/24/2005)
    5. Russia's nuclear industry will need $32 bln in next 15 years , RIA Novosti (11/24/2005)
    6. Spent nuclear fuel from Bulgaria arrived at Zheleznogorsk , Bellona Foundation (11/24/2005)
    7. Former Prime Minister to split Rosatom into "peaceful" and "military" , Vedomosti/RIA Novosti (11/23/2005)
    8. Underground nuclear power plant back on-line in Siberia , Bellona Foundation (11/23/2005)
    9. Putin predicts reorganization of atomic industry , RosBusinessConsulting (11/22/2005)
G.  Official Statements
    1. More States Sign Safeguards Agreements and Additional Protocols: Director General Says Progress Welcomed and Should Be Sustained, IAEA (11/28/2005)



A.  Submarine Dismantlement

1.
Navy commander begins inspection of Pacific Fleet in Kamchatka
ITAR-TASS
11/26/2005
(for personal use only)


PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY -- Navy commander Admiral Vladimir Masorin has begun a working trip to Kamchatka. He arrived on the peninsula on Friday to inspect the combat readiness of the Pacific Fleet in north-eastern Russia, a source in the staff of the fleet told Itar-Tass on Saturday.

Vladimir Masorin also intends to visit a base of nuclear-powered submarines near Vilyuchinsk at Krasheninnikov Bay on the eastern coast of Kamchatka.

Masorin will hold the first planned inspection of the Pacific Fleet in the capacity of the navy commander.


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2.
Delta-IV "Ryazan" to get service lifetime extension
Bellona Foundation
11/25/2005
(for personal use only)


The nuclear submarine, Ryazan, has moored at the quayside of the Zvezdochka federal state unitary enterprise to enable work to be carried out to extend its service life.

As Interfax was told at the enterprise, work has started here to carry out the certification of the nuclear submarine, and the specifications of the repair work that Zvezdochka specialists are to carry out are being drawn up. The agency's source recalled that the submarine came to prominence because of its participation in missile launches in the framework of international programmes.

The Ryazan strategic missile-carrying submarine cruiser belongs to Project 667 BDRM (Delfin, or Delta IV in NATO classification). The nuclear submarine has length of 167 m. and width of 12.2 m. Its maximum submersion depth is 400 metres, it has a draught of 8 m., speed of 14/24 knots and a crew of 130. The main power plant of the nuclear submarine includes two VM-4SG water-cooled reactors (90 MW each) and two OK-700A steam turbines. The nominal capacity of the main power plant is 60,000 hp. The nuclear submarine is armed with a D-9RM missile complex consisting of 16 three-stage liquid-fuel R-29RM missiles with a maximum range of 9,300 km. It is also fitted with the new TVR-671RTM missile-torpedo complex.

At the present time, Project 667 BDRM submarines are the main naval component of Russia's strategic nuclear triad. They are all part of the Northern Fleet's 3rd Strategic Submarine Flotilla and are based in Yagelnaya Bay.


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3.
First contract on rehabilitation project in Gremikha base signed
Bellona Foundation
11/23/2005
(for personal use only)


The first contract in the frames of the grant agreement with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) on the environmental rehabilitation of the former Northern Fleet base Gremikha on the Kola Peninsula has been signed in Moscow in October.

Deputy director of SevRAO radioactive waste department Vladimir Khandobin said the first contract concerns the storage conditions for the reactor core recently unloaded from the Alfa-class submarine. Liquid metal was used to cool the reactors on such submarines; therefore the unloading operation requires special conditions. The last similar unloading operation was carried out in Russia back in 1991, Interfax reported.

SevRAO is expecting the documents from the EBRD on the fourth reactor concerning the physical protection of the onshore base. The second and the third contracts concerning shipment of the spent nuclear fuel and radwaste from the base are more complicated as the foreign participating companies are obliged to pay Russian taxes according to the current Russian legislation. Khandobin, however, said they hope to find a solution.

Gremikha (Iokanga) naval base is the second onshore storage site at the Kola Peninsula for spent nuclear fuel and radwaste from submarines. The base is the easternmost Northern Fleet base at the Kola Peninsula, located some 350 kilometers east of the mouth of the Murmansk fjord. The European Bank of Reconstruction and Development set Gremikha as priority project in the program of environmental rehabilitation reported Interfax.


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4.
Russia Still To Unload Fuel From 50 Submarines
Radio Free Europe
11/23/2005
(for personal use only)


A senior official at the Russian Atomic Energy Agency, Rosatom, says Russia still has to unload nuclear fuel from 50 decommissioned submarines.

Sergei Antipov, Rosatom deputy director, said Russia has so far decommissioned 195 nuclear submarines of its Northern and Pacific Fleets and that nuclear fuel has been unloaded from 145 of them.

Antipov, speaking on a visit to Tokyo, said Russia and Japan agreed that Japan will help Russia dismantle five nuclear submarines decommissioned from the Pacific Fleet at the cost of $5 million to $15 million per submarine. He said Japan was ready to allocate $100 million for dismantling submarines and another $100 million for dismantling the Russian weapon-grade plutonium.

Antipov said Russia has invited Japan to join the construction of a long-term storage facility for nuclear reactors from dismantled Russian submarines in the sea port of Vladivostok.

(ITAR-TASS/BBC)



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B.  US-Russia

1.
Russia welcomes breakthrough in cooperation with NASA
RIA Novosti
11/28/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW--The Russian Space Agency is expecting a breakthrough in Russian-U.S. space cooperation following the bill on amendments to the Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000, agency head Anatoly Perminov said Monday.

The bill, signed by U.S. President George W. Bush November 22, ends restrictions on NASA's use of Russian Soyuz spacecraft for flights to the International Space Station and allows the United States to pay Russian organizations for services provided for the ISS.

"The resolution of the problem by the American side marks a breakthrough in Russian-U.S. cooperation in the space sphere," the agency quoted Perminov as saying. "It opens good prospects for the further expansion of cooperation and the strengthening of relations between the Russian Space Agency and NASA."

The Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000 linked NASA-Russia cooperation on the ISS to Russia's observance of the ban to deliver certain weapons and technologies to Iran.


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2.
Russians fear nuclear expert will spill secrets
Jason Cato
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
11/27/2005
(for personal use only)


Hardly talked about here, the possible extradition of a former Russian nuclear energy minister to face federal charges in Pittsburgh makes the national news every few days there, observers say.

That's because many Russians are convinced the United States is after Yevgeny Adamov for the secrets he harbors, not the laws he allegedly broke.

"The Russians clearly have a very deep anger about this and feel like we're abusing our relationship," said Marshall Goldman, associate director of Harvard University's Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies. "They believe once we get our hands on him, he'll reveal all their state secrets. ... They see this as a return to the Cold War."

Adamov, 66, was visiting his daughter in Bern, Switzerland, in May when he was arrested at the request of the U.S. government, which claims he stole $9 million of U.S. Department of Energy money intended to improve safety at Russian nuclear plants.

Some of that money, prosecutors say, ended up in bank accounts in Pittsburgh, where Adamov owned two businesses with Monroeville resident Mark Kaushansky, 53.

The men are charged with money laundering, tax evasion and conspiracy to defraud the United States. Adamov faces up to 60 years in prison and a $1.75 million fine if convicted. Kaushansky faces up to 180 years in prison and a $5 million fine.

Attorneys for both men say their clients are innocent.

Like all defendants in the federal court system, Adamov has three options: maintain his innocence and take his chances at trial, plead guilty but refuse to cooperate with the U.S. government, or plead guilty and cooperate. The third option would be rewarded with the least amount of time in jail.

"He may choose to cooperate because he'd save his own skin," said Douglas McNabb, senior principal partner with McNabb Associates, a global criminal defense group with offices in Washington, D.C., Houston, London and Milan. "If I was Russia, I'd be incredibly worried that Mr. Adamov could disclose national security secrets the United States did not know about and confirm ones the U.S. suspected."

Adamov, a nuclear physicist, headed the Research and Development Institute of Power Engineering, one of Russia's largest nuclear engineering and technology centers, from 1986 to 1998. He was appointed Russia's nuclear energy minister in 1998 by then-President Boris Yeltsin and was dismissed in 2001 by President Vladimir Putin over allegations of corruption.

Adamov returned to work as a leading scientist at the institute.

Russian prosecutors filed fraud and abuse of office charges against him in May, shortly after he was arrested in Switzerland.

Given his extensive knowledge of the Russian nuclear energy program, Adamov possesses enough nuclear security secrets to cause a diplomatic meltdown, said Nikolai Sokov, a senior research associate with the Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, Calif., and a former employee of the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Should Adamov reveal everything he knows, Sokov said it would be the most serious breach of nuclear security in Russian or U.S. history.

"This could completely shut down cooperation between Russia and the United States on the safety and security of fissile materials," Sokov said.

Many speculate that the U.S. is interested in Adamov's knowledge of the nuclear programs in Iran, China and North Korea. Sokov doesn't think there's much that Adamov could reveal that the U.S. doesn't already know. The real damage could come if Adamov discloses secrets about Russia's nuclear weapons program, including design information and operation details.

U.S. Attorney Mary Beth Buchanan in Pittsburgh has heard the rumblings coming out of Russia.

"I am familiar with the concerns that some individuals in Russia have raised, but there is no merit to those concerns," said Buchanan, adding that Adamov is being prosecuted "solely for violating federal laws in the Western District of Pennsylvania."

Buchanan and a U.S. delegation working on the case traveled to Moscow in October to meet with Russian prosecutors. Buchanan would not say what was discussed during the trip.

Yevgeniy Khorishko, spokesman for the Russian embassy in Washington, said the government is aware some Russians fear the U.S. action against Adamov is motivated more by a desire for intelligence than justice. He called that fear "pure speculation." The only official statement from the government is that Adamov should be extradited to Russia, not the United States, Khorishko said.

"We should have priority," he said.

A Swiss lower court disagreed in October when it ruled in favor of the U.S. extradition request. Both countries now are awaiting a decision on an appeal filed with the Swiss Federal Supreme Court. A ruling could come in January, said spokesperson Michel Vogelsang.

Adamov is being held in a Swiss jail. His attorney, Lanny Breuer, of Washington, D.C., did not return calls seeking comment for this story.

Kaushansky is free on $100,000 bond. He entered a plea of not guilty in U.S. District Court on May 17. No trial date has been set.

Kaushansky moved to the U.S. from the Soviet Union in 1979. From 1985 to 1997, he worked as a nuclear power plant engineer for Westinghouse Electric Corp. in Pittsburgh, according to the indictment. Kaushansky and Adamov met in the early '90s while Kaushansky was acting as an interpreter for Westinghouse, the indictment states.

The indictment states that Adamov and Kaushansky formed two companies -- Energo Pool Inc. and Omeka Ltd., a consulting firm, both of which had offices Downtown. The firms have since closed.

McNabb, who is not involved in the case, said he doesn't believe the U.S. has ulterior motives for wanting Adamov. But the fact Adamov could be prosecuted and divulge intelligence secrets is a win-win for the United States, he said.

That victory could cost more than it's worth, said Sokov.

"It's like a hot potato in your hands. You want it, but it's too hot to handle," he said. "This case is only valid if the U.S. limits interrogations to the specifics of the case.

"Personally, I think the U.S. has a problem there -- because the potato is so hot. So much so, they may prefer not to handle it at all."


Jason Cato can be reached at jcato@tribweb.com or 412-320-7840.



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C.  Russia-Iran

1.
Officials May Discuss Russian Offer To Make Nuclear Fuel for Iran
Brooks Tigner
Defense News
11/29/2005
(for personal use only)


BRUSSELS--European Union, Russian and Iranian officials may meet within days to review a Russian proposal for securely supplying Iran with the nuclear fuel it wants for commercial purposes.

While the union has recently backed away from insisting on U.N. sanctions against Tehran for violating International Atomic Energy Agency rules, EU officials say their decision is not open-ended and will depend on a signal of goodwill that Iran renounces any nuclear weapons-related activity or intentions.

The international community is reviewing Russia�s proposal, circulated in mid-November by President Vladimir Putin, that would let Iran continue converting uranium ore into gas while transferring the critical stage of uranium enrichment to Russian soil under a joint venture. Enriched uranium fuel is the basis for nuclear weapons.

Iran has not rejected the proposal but has not endorsed it, either. Nonetheless, Iran, Russia and the European Union may meet as early as Dec. 6 in either Moscow or Vienna to discuss the proposal, according to EU officials here.

Putin�s initiative "merits our serious attention," said Peter Jenkins, the United Kingdom�s representative to the IAEA, after a Nov. 25 meeting of the agency�s board of governors during which its EU members agreed not to take the matter up with the U.N. Security Council. But Jenkins also insisted that this opportunity would "not remain open under all circumstances."

Echoing Jenkins� position, one EU official said Nov. 28 that Iran "should give detailed consideration to Putin�s suggestion because they don�t really have a lot of options that are politically acceptable [to the international community] on the table."

Noting that EU relations with Iran have been on a wobbly course for most of 2005 because of the nuclear issue, the official said, "We need to be flexible, but there�s a limit to how long we can wait. If we have to turn to the Security Council, we will."


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2.
Tehran ready to reply to Russia
Vladimir Benazarov
RIA Novosti
11/28/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW--Last weak, speaking at a session of the governing body of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), official representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran Mohammad Mehdi Akhunzadeh said Tehran was "seriously considering Moscow's proposal to have Iranian uranium enriched in Russia."

According to some sources, Akhunzadeh actually expressed Tehran's readiness to reply to the Russian propositions within the shortest time possible, at least "before the next meeting of the governing body scheduled for March 2006."

There are, however, some undertones little known to the general public. To begin with, experts in Iran say Russia's proposal cannot be seen as an attempt to keep Iran from developing its own nuclear weapons, as is claimed by some western analysts. From the Iranian point of view, enrichment in Russia of the uranium converted at the Isfahan nuclear center should be regarded at this stage as an endeavor to soften foreign policy pressure brought to bear on the Islamic republic in recent times by the U.S., Israel and European Union countries.

The central issue that has been facing the governing body for close to three years has been the "Iranian file" - whether it should be referred to the UN Security Council threatening international sanctions against Iran, or left with the IAEA to find a compromise solution in the course of Iran-EU negotiations. Practically all resolutions passed by the Agency note Tehran's desire to cooperate and be transparent and open in resolving the problem of the file.

Besides, IAEA general director Mohammed el-Baradei, in all his reports preceding scheduled and unscheduled meetings of the board, has repeatedly stressed the peaceful tenor of Iran's nuclear programs.

The words of the Agency's head are based on the information obtained in practically continual inspections of Iranian nuclear facilities by qualified specialists and experts. Statistics say that IAEA inspections in Iran have logged more than 2,000 man-hours over less than three years: an undoubted record.

But they have failed to produce any confirmation that Iran maintains a military component of its nuclear research. However, Washington and Tel Aviv are continuing to assert that Tehran intends to develop the nuclear bomb and have been tossing ever new pieces of unconfirmed evidence to the public.

On the other hand, it is evident that the attempts by the "European Trio" (Britain, France, Germany) to solve the issue of Iranian nuclear programs have brought no results over the past two and a half years despite Iran's persistent desire to carry on dialog with the European Union.

Circles close to the IAEA are convinced that Tehran would do well by accepting Moscow's offer. Firstly, this will give it time to persuade the world community that its atomic intentions are truly peaceful, and secondly, to create a more positive image of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was elected last August.

Enrichment of Iranian uranium on Russian territory may, Tehran believes, mark a half-way station on Iran's path to its long-term program aimed at using atomic energy for power generation.


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3.
Iran's nuclear file may be sent to UN Security Council - Lavrov
RIA Novosti
11/24/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW - Russia said it was possible Iran's nuclear dossier would be referred to the UN Security Council, although it considers the move baseless and will continue to support negotiations within the framework of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the Russian foreign minister said Thursday.

"We are not excluding the possibility of handing over the Iranian nuclear dossier to the UN Security Council. However, we currently see no reasons for this," Sergei Lavrov said in an interview with government daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta.

"Everything will depend on what particularly is proven," Lavrov said. "Guessing without a clear understanding of what the discussion will be about is not for me, and I advise others to do the same."


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4.
Russian nuclear plan for Iran unites UN watchdog
Mark Heinrich and Louis Charbonneau
Reuters
11/24/2005
(for personal use only)


VIENNA - The U.N. nuclear watchdog's governors broadly agree it is better to explore a Russian compromise over Iran's nuclear activities than to report Tehran to the Security Council, Western board members said on Thursday.

A draft statement incorporating this position was submitted by the European Union's three biggest powers -- France, Britain and Germany -- to the chairman of the International Atomic Energy Agency's board as it began a two-day meeting.

"There is a broad consensus not to allow Iran in the present circumstances conducting enrichment-related activities on its soil," said the draft of a statement, obtained by Reuters, to be read by the IAEA board chairman at the end of the meeting.

The EU draft text makes no mention of previous threats to refer Tehran to the Security Council for possible sanctions, which the United States and EU had been pushing for months.

Diplomats said a decision by the EU and the United States not to push for referral at the meeting had averted a potential clash with Russia and China, which oppose any such move.

Rarely united previously, they and the Western powers, along with developing countries such as India and South Africa, now seem to agree Russia's proposal offers the best route forward.

Moscow has suggested letting Tehran conduct less-sensitive uranium processing in Iran and shifting the converted material to Russia, where a Russian-Iranian joint venture would handle the critical enrichment process. Enrichment can yield fuel for nuclear power stations or bomb-grade uranium fuel.

IRAN INSISTS ON ENRICHMENT

However, Iran has made clear it intends to pursue uranium enrichment on its own soil, and Tehran's chief nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, said this would be the main topic of any future discussions with the Europeans and Russians.

"The next talks will be about the enrichment programme and there must be a framework and a deadline for talks, because without such things, negotiations will be fruitless," he told Iran's semi-official Mehr news agency.

The EU text says the IAEA's 35-nation board had "unanimous hope...that the negotiation process could resume, taking into account, among different ideas, the Russian proposals".

Word from Iran on Wednesday that it expected to unfreeze dialogue with the EU has been seen by IAEA board members as a sign of flexibility from Tehran after months of tough talk.

For more than three years, the IAEA has been investigating Western allegations that Iran has been trying to develop atomic weapons in secret. Tehran denies wanting anything more than civilian nuclear energy but acknowledges hiding potentially weapons-related technology from U.N. inspectors for 18 years.

Diplomats said envoys of Russia, Britain, France, Germany and Iran tentatively planned to meet on December 6, four months after the "EU3" group cut off contact in protest at Iran ending a suspension in processing uranium for nuclear fuel.

The meeting, which diplomats say will take place in Vienna, Brussels, Geneva or Moscow, will focus on the Russian proposal.

"We must do what we can to explore the window of opportunity offered by Russia's proposal, give more time for diplomacy. The general feeling is that to go to a vote (against Iran) now would be premature," said a senior diplomat on the IAEA board.

The IAEA board of governors will not vote on Security Council referral but will issue a statement summarising concerns expressed by board members, diplomats on the board said.

The Japanese chairman of the board will decide on the final text. Western diplomats said the non-aligned developing nations on the board would demand that the EU draft text be softened.

Several Western board members said wide support for the draft text reflected growing world concern that Iran's nuclear capabilities must be curtailed.

(Additional reporting by Parinoosh Arami and Paul Hughes in Tehran and Paul Taylor in Brussels)


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5.
Iran denies receiving Russian uranium enrichment proposals
RIA Novosti
11/23/2005
(for personal use only)


TEHRAN -- The Iranian Foreign Minister said Wednesday that Tehran had not received any proposals from Moscow on joint uranium enrichment in Russia.

Commenting on media reports about alleged proposals from Russia, Manuchehr Motaki said that under international agreements, Iran could conduct nuclear activities in its own territory.

"The use of peaceful nuclear technologies and the creation of a nuclear fuel cycle in Iran is a legal right of the Islamic Republic guaranteed by the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty," the minister said.

He also denied rumors of the suspension of operations at the Isfahan nuclear facility.


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6.
Bushehr NPP not ready to get nuclear fuel - official
RIA Novosti
11/22/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW - The nuclear power plant in the Iranian city of Bushehr is technically unprepared for accepting nuclear fuel, a senior official from the Russian Federal Agency for Nuclear Power said Tuesday.

Alexander Shmygin said it was unnecessary to supply nuclear fuel to Bushehr as it was "very difficult" to keep it in the Persian Gulf.

"The fuel that is being kept at a Russian plant is safe and we guarantee its safety," he said.

Shmygin said the $800-million nuclear reactor in Bushehr was expected to be launched in mid-2006.


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D.  Russia-North Korea

1.
Russia may supply electricity to China, N., S. Korea
RIA Novosti
11/29/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW - Russia may begin exporting electricity to China and North and South Korea, the deputy board chairman of Russia's electricity monopoly said Tuesday.

United Energy System's Leonid Drachevsky said Russia is proposing to build a power line from Russia's Far East carrying 800 MWs of electric energy to North Korea.

The energy would replace electricity supplies from South Korea and China.

"To implement this project, we are currently negotiating a three-way agreement," he said.

On July 1, UES and the Chinese State Power Grid Corporation signed an agreement on cooperation that would enable the large-scale export of Russian power to China.

"If we are able to agree on a price, in 2015-2018 electricity export from Russia to China could reach 47-56 billion kWh [per year]," Drachevsky said.

Japan has also shown an interest in importing electricity from Russia, he said.


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E.  Nuclear Forces

1.
Russian missile hits Far East test range targets
RIA Novosti
11/29/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW - The Russian Defense Ministry said Tuesday that a PC-12M Topol intercontinental ballistic missile, launched in an exercise from the northern Plesetsk complex, had hit its targets in Russia's Far East.

The missile was fired from a mobile complex toward the Kura test range on the Kamchatka Peninsula.

The launch took place at 10:44 Moscow time (07:44 GMT). The purpose of the exercise was to test the equipment, as the missile had been commissioned 20 years ago.


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2.
U.S. Analyzes New Russian Warhead
Global Security Newswire
11/22/2005
(for personal use only)


U.S. officials have confirmed that Russia has tested a new missile warhead designed to defeat missile defenses by changing its course, the Washington Times reported.

U.S. satellites and other intelligence monitors tracked a Nov. 1 test, in which the warhead was launched on a Topol-M missile from a complex near Volgograd.

While existing ballistic warheads remain on a constant flight path after reaching space, the experimental warhead appears capable of switching course and range, U.S. officials told the Times.

Russian officials told press outlets there that the new warhead was produced in response to the installation of U.S. missile interceptors in Alaska and California. Added maneuverability could defeat U.S. systems that calculate the flight path and impact point of a warhead in guiding missile interceptors toward their targets.

While he did not discuss the Russian test, U.S. Missile Defense Agency spokesman Rick Lehner noted that U.S. missile defenses are focused on nations such as North Korea rather than Russia. Moscow worries, though, that U.S. interceptors could be placed on the East Coast or in Europe in order to defeat Russian missiles, the Times reported (Bill Gertz, Washington Times, Nov. 21).

Meanwhile, Russia announced yesterday that it would test its mobile RS-12M Topol ICBM on Nov. 29.

"The purpose of the launch is to confirm the reliability of missiles of this type and to extend their service life," Col. Alexander Vovk, spokesman for the Russian Strategic Missile Troops, told ITAR-Tass.

A fifth Missile Troops regiment is expected to enter service with the silo-based Topol-M missile late next month, Vovk said. The Teykovskaya missile division is to receive Topol-M missiles on mobile launchers next year (ITAR-Tass, Nov. 21).


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F.  Nuclear Industry

1.
Radiation normal at Novovoronezh NPP
ITAR-TASS
11/29/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW - The turbo-generator of the fourth unit of the Novovoronezh nuclear power plant was automatically shut down at 10:05 a.m. Moscow time on Tuesday.

"Reasons for the shutdown are being studied," a source at the nuclear power plant�s press center told Itar-Tass.

The shutdown did not breach the power plant�s safety, he said. "The radiation inside and outside the power plant is normal."

There have been several automatic shutdowns at the Novovoronezh nuclear power plant this year. The fifth unit had an automatic shutdown on September 5. The unit was restarted and shut down again on September 6 because of certain defects. The unit had another shutdown on November 6 because of a false alarm in a safety system sensor.


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2.
China's NPP to get unique Russian containment system
Alexei Yefimov
RIA Novosti
11/28/2005
(for personal use only)


LIANYUNGANG (China) - A unique Russian containment system is being installed at the Tianwan nuclear power plant in China, the head of state-owned Atomstroiexport's branch in Lianyungang said Monday.

The company is building the first and second units of the nuclear power plant in Lianyungang in the Jiangsu province under a 1992 relevant intergovernmental agreement.

"The containment system rules out the possibility of a radiation release and environmental pollution," Alexander Selikhov said.

He called the system a unique Russian invention.

"No similar devices have been installed at other [nuclear power] plants in the world," Selikhov said.

He also said the Tianwan NPP had four security systems, instead of the usual three.

According to Selikhov, the nuclear power plant could stand a magnitude 7.0 earthquake on the Richter Scale. Chief engineer Ma Yi said the plant was highly reliable and immune to possible terrorist attacks.

The first unit is to be launched in January 2006. China wants Russia to build the third and fourth units.


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3.
Former Far East presidential envoy to get new appointment
RIA Novosti
11/28/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW, November 28 (RIA Novosti) - The former presidential envoy to the Far East Federal District Konstantin Pulikovsky will be appointed the head of the Russian Federal Agency for Environmental, Technological and Atomic Oversight (Rostekhnadzor), a government source said Monday.

"It can be confirmed that Pulikovsky will be appointed the head of Rostekhnadzor," the source said. However, the official was unable to specify a timeframe.

Rostekhnadzor deputy head Andrei Malyshev is currently the service's acting director.


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4.
Russia must double uranium output by 2020 - TVEL
RIA Novosti
11/24/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW - Russia has to increase its annual uranium production nearly twofold from the current 3,200 metric tons to 7,500 metric tons by 2020, state-owned company TVEL said in a report Tuesday.

By 2050, the country needs to increase uranium production to 12,000 metric tons, according to TVEL, a nuclear fuel and uranium producer.

The company said, however, that fast neutron reactors that are scheduled to be phased in between 2030 and 2040 would considerably raise the efficiency of uranium burning, the conversion on nuclear fuel and uranium and plutonium fuel cycle closure.

Experts said this would allow for the gradual reduction of uranium production to an annual output of 50,000 metric tons worldwide and to 4,000 tons in Russia from 2010 to 2050-2060.

The International Atomic Energy Agency said countries with nuclear power plants would be building thermal neutron reactors before 2050, meaning their demand for uranium per year would grow from the current 68,000 metric tons to 142,000 by 2050.

TVEL also conducts research to improve fuel for BN-600 reactors and is developing new fuel production technology for fast reactors with closed fuel cycle.


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5.
Russia's nuclear industry will need $32 bln in next 15 years
RIA Novosti
11/24/2005
(for personal use only)


MOSCOW - The Russian nuclear industry will need $32 billion in investment in the next 15 years, the Federal Nuclear Energy Agency said Thursday.

Valery Rachkov, head of the agency's nuclear industry department, told an international conference that the sector was short on outside investment and had to be financed with its own money.

"Unfortunately, there is no clearly outlined mechanism for attracting investment in the nuclear industry," Rachkov said. Last year, the industry received 5 billion rubles ($174 million) less than it actually needed, and this year, it is expected to be short 15 billion rubles ($523 million).

According to the official, one of the main challenges facing Russia's nuclear industry is the need to maintain the pace of construction of new nuclear power plants while keeping energy prices low.

"The price of electricity generated at nuclear power plants is always lower than at other types of stations," he said.

Rachkov said the main priorities in developing the sector included upgrading existing nuclear reactors, extending their service to 15 years and raising their efficiency to 34%, developing the nuclear energy market, and increasing the generation of heat at nuclear power plants.

He said that in the years to come, Russia's nuclear industry would be advanced mostly through innovative projects, including ones envisaging the development of fast neutron reactors.

The nuclear industry's targeted electricity production level for 2006 is 152 billion kilowatt-hours, Rachkov said. Some 151 billion kWh of energy is to be generated this year; last year's output amounted to 145.3 billion kWh.


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6.
Spent nuclear fuel from Bulgaria arrived at Zheleznogorsk
Bellona Foundation
11/24/2005
(for personal use only)


On November 9, 48 tons of spent nuclear fuel from Bulgarian Kozloduy nuclear power plant arrived at Mining Chemical Combine in Zheleznogorsk, Krasnoyarsk region.

According to ITAR-TASS, the shipment went on without incidents. The train with the spent fuel was guarded day and night by the police special forces. The Combine�s specialists also accompanied the train and monitored the conditions of the casks containing spent nuclear fuel. A nuclear storage facility with 6,000 tons capacity is situated in Zheleznogorsk. A new dry storage facility capable to accommodate and reprocess 38,000 tons is scheduled for 2009.


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7.
Former Prime Minister to split Rosatom into "peaceful" and "military"
Vedomosti/RIA Novosti
11/23/2005
(for personal use only)


President Vladimir Putin has instructed Sergei Kiriyenko, the new director of the Federal Agency for Nuclear Power (Rosatom), to restructure the entire industry. The former prime minister is to single out the "civilian" components of the nuclear industry and build them up into a mega-corporation for the construction of nuclear power plants in Russia and abroad.

Former Nuclear Power Minister Viktor Mikhailov said that Kiriyenko had already discussed reorganization plans with him. He said there were plans "to divide [the nuclear industry] into military and peaceful branches although, in the his view, they were inseparable.

Another informed source in Rosatom said that a state enterprise for the generation of electric and heat power at nuclear plants (Rosenergoatom) is to be incorporated next year. It is assumed that all "civilian" research institutes and enterprises of the branch will pool around this concern.

The new mega-corporation, as conceived by the reformers, will handle the construction of new nuclear plants in Russia and abroad. Atomstroiexport, the company that builds Russian-designed nuclear plants abroad, and United Heavy Machineries (OMZ) may be included in this structure. The structures of state-controlled Gazprombank have already purchased Atomstroiexport from Georgia's Economic Minister Kakha Bendukidze, and will soon buy his OMZ, according to a source close to Gazprom.

A businessman connected with the nuclear industry said the peaceful atom will be difficult to divest from the military one for technological reasons, since peace-oriented nuclear industry was initially established as a by-product of the military branch, and all technologies were passed from the military sector to the peaceful, not vice versa.

"The desire to segregate and concentrate power generation is understandable, since it would generate an income which could be redistributed and rechaneled. On the other hand, nuclear weapons production does not bring cash and is not a business, it is national security. It is not only complicated, but also dangerous to separate it," says the source.


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8.
Underground nuclear power plant back on-line in Siberia
Bellona Foundation
11/23/2005
(for personal use only)


Electricity generation for Zheleznogorsk, Krasnoyarsk region, is transferred back from the boiler houses of the Mining and Chemical Combine to the underground nuclear power plant.

The Combine�s specialists refueled the 40 years old reactor ADE-2 and improved the operation safety, ITAR-TASS reported. Underground nuclear reactor AD-2 was put in operation in 1964 and became the main source of the heat and electricity for Zheleznogorsk.

The three weapons grade plutonium producing reactors--two in the closed Siberian city of Seversk and the one mentioned above in Zheleznogorsk--will, according to the agreement, be decommissioned within the next six years, effectively ending Russia's capability to produce weapons grade plutonium. These reactors represent the last of Russia's 13 plutonium-producing reactors that were slated for dismantlement under the DOE and US Department of Defense�s Cooperative Threat Reduction, or CTR programmes. The United States has already shut down all of its 14 plutonium production reactors.


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9.
Putin predicts reorganization of atomic industry
RosBusinessConsulting
11/22/2005
(for personal use only)


Moscow -- The appointment of Sergei Kiriyenko, Putin's envoy to the Volga region, as the head of Russia's Federal Atomic Energy Agency is linked with upcoming organizational changes in Russia's nuclear industry, President Putin declared at a press conference in Magadan today.

According to Putin, the reason for bringing Kiriyenko to the government was not just to be the head of the Federal Atomic Energy Agency. "It would not have been enough for him," the President stressed. Putin said that Russia's energy sphere was on the verge of new organizational decisions. "We are approaching a new phase in the atomic energy industry." The President expressed his confidence that Russia had obvious competitive advantages in this sphere, accumulated over several decades, and that there was no way it would lose them. "This is exactly the industry where we are set to achieve certain results," the Mayak radio quoted the President as saying.


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G.  Official Statements

1.
More States Sign Safeguards Agreements and Additional Protocols: Director General Says Progress Welcomed and Should Be Sustained
IAEA
11/28/2005
(for personal use only)


Belarus and Malaysia recently signed what is known as an additional protocol to their safeguards agreements with the IAEA, which will eventually allow for more effective and efficient nuclear inspections in their countries. They are the latest of 16 States that have signed additional protocols this year. Overall, the number of additional protocol signatories grew by 20% in 2005 reaching the 100 mark in July.

In addition, eight countries in 2005 signed safeguards agreements with the IAEA pursuant to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).

"On the whole, 2005 has been a good year in terms of States concluding comprehensive safeguards agreements and additional protocols," IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei said in the Board this week. "However, it is important that we continue and accelerate this trend." The additional protocol must become the universal standard for verifying nuclear non-proliferation commitments, Dr. ElBaradei recently reaffirmed, noting that the expanded access provided by the additional protocol "had proven its worth".

All told, 106 States have signed additional protocols as of 25 November 2005. However, additional protocols are in force with only 69 countries. Protocols are also implemented with Iran and Libya pending formal entry into force.

The Model Additional Protocol was agreed upon in 1997 to strengthen the IAEA safeguards system, based on the wake-up call caused by the discovery of Iraq�s pre-1991 nuclear weapons programme. Once in force, such protocols provide IAEA inspectors with better tools to ensure that States have no undeclared nuclear material or activities that should have been reported to the Agency.


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