India to double uranium capacity this year

India to double uranium capacity this year

India will double uranium capacity this year to meet requirements of its nuclear programmes, a top government official said on Wednesday. “We are in the process of expanding uranium capacity. Projects are already underway and uranium capacity would be doubled this year,” Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) Chairman, Mr Anil Kakodkar, said at a seminar here.

Mr Kakodkar, however, did not give the exact quantity of the present uranium capacity in the country or the targeted addition. According to estimates, existing uranium reserves in the country are around 78,000 tonnes.

He said domestic uranium is sufficient to fire power generation plants of 10,000 MW capacity. For any additional generation from nuclear fuels, India would have to depend either on imported uranium or domestically available thorium, he said.

India currently has a total nuclear power generation capacity of about 3,800 MW and plans to scale it up to 20,000 MW by 2020.

Mr Kakodkar said the ore available in India contained only 0.06 per cent of uranium compared to 18 per cent in ores found in countries such as Canada. – PTI

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