Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


Qom (Ghom)

Digital Globe Imagery January 2009

Imagery released by Digital Globe taken during January 2009. No specific dates for the images were available.

A preliminary examination of the spoils piles and the excavations suggests that this is a cut and fill site, rather than a series of entrances to deeply buried tunnels. A cut is a man-made feature resulting from cutting through raised ground, usually to form a level bed for a road, railroad track, or other construction. A fill is a man-made feature resulting from filling a low area, such as to form a level bed for a road or railroad track, or to fill in the excavation cut to emplace a hardened underground facility.

The large excavation is notable for the extensive structural lattice which appears to be rebar [reinforcing bar], the steel bar used in reinforced concrete construction. While this excavation might be interpreted as an entrance to a much larger underground facility, upon reflection it seems far too large - 120 meters x 45 meters / 400 feet x 150 feet - for this function. This roughly football field sized excavation is roughly consistent in volume with the larger lobe of the spoils pile [which is not in evidence in the 2005 image], which suggests that this spoils pile reflects this excavation, and that there is no larger underground tunnel complex. With an area of somewhat greater than 5,000 square meters, based on the floor space and number of centrifuges at the other Iranian enrichment facility at Natanz, this complex is consistent in size with the 3,000 centrifuges reported by the 25 September 2009 US Government background briefing.

The Google image from 2005 reveals two buildings which are the cover for initial excavations, but these seem to go down not in horizontally. There is a small spoil pile, suggesting that the excavations eventually revealed in the 2009 image are the entire excavation. That is, the spoils piles are too small for an additional large deeply buried tunnel complex.

In the 2009 image, the pair of buildings in the 2005 image are replaced by a pair of constructions that might be interpreted as entrances, but which upon closer examination appear to be possibly/probably associated with an electrical power generation plant. The feature scale is about ten meters - that is, the square features to the left are 10 meters, and the tunnels to the right are 10 meters. evidently they are big enough to drive vehicles through them, since there is evidence of roads leading up to [and through?] them. But it is improbable that the facility requires four [or six, depending on how the associated but unconnected rectangular boxes are interpreted] large vehicular entrances.

The excavations initially seen in the 2005 images are seen in the 2009 image to consist of a pair of symmetrical rectangular box features, for a total of four. This image is a composite depiction of one such installation. These are most easily interpreted as some type of electrical power generation plant [diesel, gas turbine, etc]. Since this site is at a rather remote location, it might have seemed easier to generate the electrical power needed by the enrichment centrifuges on site, rather than building power lines to connect the site with the distant power grid.

Click on the small image to view a larger version

Qom Uranium Enrichment Facility




Imagery Source: Digital Globe

A preliminary examination of the spoils piles and the excavations suggests that this is a cut and fill site, rather than a series of entrances to deeply buried tunnels. A cut is a man-made feature resulting from cutting through raised ground, usually to form a level bed for a road, railroad track, or other construction. A fill is a man-made feature resulting from filling a low area, such as to form a level bed for a road or railroad track, or to fill in the excavation cut to emplace a hardened underground facility.

Qom Uranium Enrichment Facility




Imagery Source: Digital Globe

A preliminary examination of the spoils piles and the excavations suggests that this is a cut and fill site, rather than a series of entrances to deeply buried tunnels. A cut is a man-made feature resulting from cutting through raised ground, usually to form a level bed for a road, railroad track, or other construction. A fill is a man-made feature resulting from filling a low area, such as to form a level bed for a road or railroad track, or to fill in the excavation cut to emplace a hardened underground facility.

Qom Uranium Enrichment Facility




Imagery Source: Digital Globe

A preliminary examination of the spoils piles and the excavations suggests that this is a cut and fill site, rather than a series of entrances to deeply buried tunnels. A cut is a man-made feature resulting from cutting through raised ground, usually to form a level bed for a road, railroad track, or other construction. A fill is a man-made feature resulting from filling a low area, such as to form a level bed for a road or railroad track, or to fill in the excavation cut to emplace a hardened underground facility.

Probable Centrifuge Hall




Imagery Source: Digital Globe

The large excavation is notable for the extensive structural lattice which appears to be rebar [reinforcing bar], the steel bar used in reinforced concrete construction. While this excavation might be interpreted as an entrance to a much larger underground facility, upon reflection it seems far too large - 120 meters x 45 meters / 400 feet x 150 feet - for this function. This roughly football field sized excavation is roughly consistent in volume with the larger lobe of the spoils pile [which is not in evidence in the 2005 image], which suggests that this spoils pile reflects this excavation, and that there is no larger underground tunnel complex. With an area of somewhat greater than 5,000 square meters, based on the floor space and number of centrifuges at the other Iranian enrichment facility at Natanz, this complex is consistent in size with the 3,000 centrifuges reported by the 25 September 2009 US Government background briefing.

Probable Centrifuge Hall




Imagery Source: Digital Globe

The large excavation is notable for the extensive structural lattice which appears to be rebar [reinforcing bar], the steel bar used in reinforced concrete construction. While this excavation might be interpreted as an entrance to a much larger underground facility, upon reflection it seems far too large - 120 meters x 45 meters / 400 feet x 150 feet - for this function. This roughly football field sized excavation is roughly consistent in volume with the larger lobe of the spoils pile [which is not in evidence in the 2005 image], which suggests that this spoils pile reflects this excavation, and that there is no larger underground tunnel complex. With an area of somewhat greater than 5,000 square meters, based on the floor space and number of centrifuges at the other Iranian enrichment facility at Natanz, this complex is consistent in size with the 3,000 centrifuges reported by the 25 September 2009 US Government background briefing.

Possible Power Plants - 2005




Imagery Source: Google

The Google image from 2005 reveals two buildings which are the cover for initial excavations, but these seem to go down not in horizontally. There is a small spoil pile, suggesting that the excavations eventually revealed in the 2009 image are the entire excavation. That is, the spoils piles are too small for an additional large deeply buried tunnel complex.

Possible Power Plants - 2009




Imagery Source: Digital Globe

In the 2009 image, the pair of buildings in the 2005 image are replaced by a pair of constructions that might be interpreted as entrances, but which upon closer examination appear to be possibly/probably associated with an electrical power generation plant. The feature scale is about ten meters - that is, the square features to the left are 10 meters, and the tunnels to the right are 10 meters. evidently they are big enough to drive vehicles through them, since there is evidence of roads leading up to [and through?] them. But it is improbable that the facility requires four [or six, depending on how the associated but unconnected rectangular boxes are interpreted] large vehicular entrances.

Possible Power Plant - Composite




Imagery Source: Digital Globe

The excavations initially seen in the 2005 images are seen in the 2009 image to consist of a pair of symmetrical rectangular box features, for a total of four. This image is a composite depiction of one such installation. These are most easily interpreted as some type of electrical power generation plant [diesel, gas turbine, etc]. Since this site is at a rather remote location, it might have seemed easier to generate the electrical power needed by the enrichment centrifuges on site, rather than building power lines to connect the site with the distant power grid.




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