Overgrown with uranium

Uranium Holding "ARMZ" state corporation "Rosatom" rose from fifth to second place in terms of uranium reserves.

 Photo source:expert.ru

"Rosatom" provided the uranium fuel their current and future nuclear power plants in the next 100 years

"Today, our company," ARMZ "is on stocks is the second in the world. And we surely understand the logic in what we have to come out on top in the world. We have the cheapest structure of reserves, and today we have 20% of U.S. stocks, it is difficult to imagine a while ago, " — The head of "Rosatom" Sergei Kiriyenko at the entrance of the Government Presidium meeting.

This means that the Russian nuclear corporation has provided nuclear fuel their operating, under construction or planned for construction in Russia and overseas nuclear power plants (NPPs) for at least 100 years (the first of January of this year, the uranium reserves of "Rosatom" $ 726, 5,000,000 tons).

"Even if we imagine for a moment that, no one will sell a gram of uranium, the stocks today we are fully provided all the stations that we are building in the country, and all for which we have signed an intergovernmental agreement overseas uranium next hundred years,"
— Said Sergey Kiriyenko.

Russia has a very specific pattern of production and consumption of uranium as fuel for nuclear power plants. Our country it is required annually, according to various sources, the 8-9 thousand tons (including fuel exports to foreign nuclear power plants, but excluding exports of low-enriched uranium). In this case, the uranium itself is made in Russia, only about 3.5-4 tons per year — Historically, when the bulk of the uranium mined, for example, in Kazakhstan, and its processing plants located in Russia.

Of course, Russia itself could sharply increase uranium on its territory — stocks alone Elkon deposit in Yakutia is 346 thousand tons, and it could give out to the surface each year to 15 tons of uranium per year. In turn, the authorities of Buryatia that year insist that mine "Khiagda", which is in trial operation, was finally put into industrial operation with the level of production up to 5 tons of uranium per year.

But the "Rosatom" entered tricky. Corporation did not force any of Yakutia and Buryatia, nor on the current industrial fields in the Trans-Baikal and the Kurgan region, and began buying up uranium deposits outside of the Eurasian continent. The most famous trade — buying "ARMZ" (ARMZ) last year earner control over the Canadian uranium Uranium One (U1), a license for production of this element in South Africa, Namibia, Kazakhstan, Australia and the United States. This enabled the ARMZ add to his existing 546 tons of uranium resource base half U1 — 75 tons (total reserves of at that time was 150 thousand tons).

Less well known are other deals ARMZ. In June this year, the Russian company, for example, closed its acquisition of the Australian public company Mantra Resources, which is the flagship project of development of the field Mkuju River in Tanzania. Early last week, U1, which became the operator of the project, said that as a result of additional exploration overall size of the mineral resource base of the project has increased from 101.4 million to 119.4 million pounds of mixed oxide (about 45.9 thousand . tons of uranium).
"This is not the end — we continue to work together with the Government of Tanzania. We are confident that there is still build up reserves, " — Said after the members of government head of "Rosatom" Sergey Kiriyenko. In addition, it is known that a number of uranium-bearing areas in Africa and bought a few non-"Rosatom" of large Russian companies.

It is obvious that, given the next "wave" of instability in the world economy "Rosatom" will try to further increase its uranium outside of Russia. The Russian Corporation believe that this will give her a definite advantage over other major companies of the world, especially in front of the French Canadian Cameco and Areva.
"The world's biggest company Cameco and Areva in 2024 after waiting for a decline in production due to depletion of the largest mines," McArthur River, "" Cigar Lake, "" acute accent. " The remaining reserves amount to 38% of the original " — In the summer of last year, said the Deputy Director General of ARMZ Alexander Fighters. Especially that "Rosatom" considers production of nuclear materials not only as a component of the chain, the top of which is the construction and operation of a nuclear power plant, but also as an independent business. A year ago, ARMZ has become the largest global supplier of low enriched uranium, supplying it not only in most of the South-East Asia and Europe, but also in the United States.

On these uranium reserves "Rosatom", apparently, will be held until such time as their cost of production is lower than Russian. A reduced cost of production of enriched uranium, for example, Elkon, can only in two cases — either Russian scientists will offer some fabulously cheap method of its industrial development or climate in Yakutia will be the same as in Tanzania and Namibia. Since this is unlikely to happen in the next few years (though the permafrost is now retreating to the north much more rapidly than before), the main resource base of "Rosatom" all this time and will be overseas uranium deposits.

In this case, however, the Russian nuclear corporation and intensified efforts to create conditions for the establishment in our country of a closed nuclear fuel cycle (CNFC) as fuel for nuclear power plants can become not only enriched uranium, but the waste. But when fast reactors will be a full replacement for existing nuclear power plants, can not say yet, neither Russia nor China nor India (in fact, only in these three countries are now preserved an interest in this topic.)

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