Assessment of non-proliferation regime to establish regulatory framework for the front-end of the nuclear fuel cycle in Africa
Bopape, Albert Modiela
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This is a research based project to support the Non-Proliferation regime by investigating ideas on how to improve assurances that the front end of the nuclear fuel cycle (NFC) on the African continent is not used to support non-peaceful purposes. The front end of the nuclear fuel cycle consists of those stages of the fuel cycle before the utilization of nuclear fuel (uranium) in a nuclear reactor. Apart from South Africa, no other African country is operating nuclear power plants. The part of the nuclear fuel cycle that is relevant to all African countries with uranium resources are uranium mining and uranium milling. The stages of the nuclear fuel cycle covered in this project are therefore, uranium mining and uranium ore concentration (milling). Transportation of uranium ore concentrate is also considered. Nuclear safeguards is the principal technical means by which proliferation aspects of the nuclear fuel cycle are addressed at both the international and national levels. This project reviews and assesses the safeguards measures currently in place, in order to identify weaknesses; with a view of strengthening the presently deployed measures. Additionally, the project examines the nuclear non-proliferation relevant legal frameworks in force in African States, the project also looks at nuclear security, other verification regimes (such as those under the CTBTO, EURATOM Treaty, JCPOA and the OPCW), other nuclear weapons free zone treaties (Tlatelolco), as well as verification and control in the diamond mining and processing industry; in order to identify best practices that could be adopted and adapted to strengthen safeguards implementation at the front end of the nuclear fuel cycle. The ultimate objective of the project, as previously indicated, is to develop ideas on how to enhance the non-proliferation stewardship of the front end of the nuclear fuel cycle in general and on the African continent in particular.
- Engineering