Iran may sell to Russia some 40 ton of heavy water, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said on Tuesday, TASS reported. “We are currently in negotiations with Russia on the sale of 40 tons of heavy water, there are also other buyers ready to purchase it from us,” the minister said.
Araghchi noted that the negotiations are still going on, adding, “I don’t known when [the agreement will be reached], these are commercial negotiations, they continue.”
According to Araghchi, the Iranians have recently sold 32 tons of heavy water to the US. “The deal has been finalized, the money has already been transferred to the accounts of the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization,” he said.
In January, Iran removed the core of its Arak heavy water nuclear reactor and filled it with cement as required under a nuclear deal reached between Iran and six world powers, TASS reported. Like the US, Russia is eager to purchase Iran’s excess heavy water and enriched uranium, Alexei Karpov, the Russian deputy permanent representative to international organizations in Vienna, told reporters on Tuesday.
“We’ll be ready, as a possible option, to continue such work on enriched uranium in the future, if Iran requests,” he said. “As for heavy water, we are also ready to assist Iran in this issue by buying the needed amount of this material.”
Heavy water is a form of water that contains a larger than normal amount of the hydrogen isotope deuterium, rather than the common hydrogen-1 isotope that makes up most of the hydrogen in normal water. Deuterium oxide is used in nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy when the solvent of interest is water and the nuclide of interest is hydrogen.
Iran produced deuterated solvents in early 2011 for the first time at its plant for production of heavy water at Khondab near Arak.David Israel