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MOX for Peace program: The fabrication of MOX fuel assemblies for the United States has begun

News brief

ACTIVITIES / NUCLEAR POWER

January 18, 2005

Following the fabrication of fuel pellets and rods at the COGEMA facilities in Cadarache, fabrication of the assemblies for the US, the last stage in the process, has just begun at the MELOX plant in Marcoule.

The four MOX (mixed uranium and plutonium oxides) fuel assemblies fabricated from weapons-grade plutonium will be delivered to the United States in spring 2005, right on schedule.

This operation falls within the scope of the non-proliferation program put in place by the United States and the Russian Federation which aims to transform surplus weapons-grade plutonium for use as civil fuel in nuclear power plants. The four assemblies fabricated in France will be used to validate the performance of MOX fuel in an American nuclear reactor. They will be loaded into the Catawba nuclear power plant, owned by Duke Power, and will be used to generate electricity to supply the equivalent of a town of around 100,000 inhabitants for one year.

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