Tandem Accelerator

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Last Updated: October 1, 2009
Other Name: Tandem Electrostatic Accelerator
Location: Nuclear Research Center (NRC), Inshas (NE Cairo suburb)
Subordinate To: Atomic Energy Authority (AEA)
Size: 3 MeV
Facility Status: Under commission, possibly operational

The AEA plans to install a 3 MeV, 350 A (microampere) tandem electrostatic accelerator. [1] Although the AEA lists the project on its website as "still in the commissioning state," the accelerator may have become operational sometime in 2004. [2]

Even if the tandem accelerator is operational, the proliferation risk appears low. According to Kemp, assuming a 5 MeV beam and 100 mA (milliampere) current (more than Egypt's planned accelerator), some 50 tandem accelerators would be required to produce enough fissile material for a bomb in two years. [3]

Sources:
[1] "Tandem Accelerator," Egyptian Atomic Energy Authority, www.eaea.org.eg; M.N.H. Comsan, "Tandem Accelerator Facility at Inshas," Atomic Energy Authority, http://accelconf.web.cern.ch.
[2] Physics Egypt, "Inshas Tandem Accelerator Went Operational," 13 June 2004, www.physicsegypt.org.
[3] R. Scott Kemp, "Nuclear Proliferation with Particle Accelerators," Science and Global Security, 13, 2005, pp. 183-207.

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