Indicators of Clandestine Production of Highly Enriched Uranium Using Gas Centrifuges: Table 1

One method to produce highly enriched uranium (HEU) is by using gas centrifuges. Iraq developed its gas centrifuge technology in the late 1980s and possesses much information on making and using centrifuge components.

The clandestine procurement of uranium centrifuge enrichment technology may include the acquisition of specialized technical items, including:

  • Special aluminum alloys, maraging steel, or fiber composites;
  • Special oils, bearing technology, and magnets;
  • Good quality CNC multi-axis machines and inspection tools for centrifuge components;
  • Equipment for production of Uranium Hexaflouride (UF6), including nickel alloy components and large amounts of aluminum tubing;
  • Good quality sealed vacuum valves and heliarc welding equipment;
  • Raw fluorine, HF and preconditioning agent (i.e. CIF3).

The procurement of these items may indicate the existence of a program to manufacture centrifuge components in large quantities. With the raw materials on hand, the production of centrifuge components requires only a few workers in a clean shop.