Prior to the release of the 28 May 2004 IAEA report, this facility was not previously associated with Libya's nuclear weapons program in the open literature. It is unclear whether the US intelligence community had associated this facility with Libya's nuclear ambitions prior to the year 2003, when Libya decided to abandon the weapons program.
The original centrifuge R&D location was at Al Hashan, called Site A by the IAEA. Libyan scientists and technicians were trained at Hashan. Hundreds of scientists and technicians were being prepared for enriching uranium and assembling components for nuclear weapons.
Libyan authorities informed the IAEA that, in late 2000, Libya started to progressively install 9- machine, 19-machine and 64-machine L-1 centrifuge cascades into a larger hall at Al Hashan (Site A). By April 2002, the 9-machine cascade was complete and under vacuum, with all pipes, electrical connections and process equipment installed. The 19-machine cascade was at a similar state of completion, with the first 10 rotors installed but not under vacuum. The 64-machine cascade, together with its process equipment, was only placed in position ready for installation. By then, the mechanical test equipment for the completed single centrifuge had also been moved to the larger hall.
The Hashan site is on the outskirts of Tripoli.
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|