Foreign Affairs and Trade, Australia


  Annual Report 1998-99



Australian Obligated Nuclear Material (AONM) Overseas:

(i) Locations and Quantities of AONM as at 31 December 1998.

Category Location Quantity (tonnes)
Natural Uranium Canada, Euratom, Japan, ROK, USA 12,990
Uranium in Enrichment Plants Euratom, Japan, USA 21,067
Depleted Uranium Euratom, Japan, USA 36,135
Low Enriched Uranium Canada, Euratom, Japan, ROK, Switzerland, USA 6,300
Irradiated Plutonium Canada, Euratom, Japan, ROK, Switzerland, USA 42.0
Separated Plutonium Euratom, Japan 1.4
Thorium USA 86
Total (tonnes)   76,621


  • The end-use for all AONM is for the production of electric power in civil nuclear reactors and for related R&D. AONM cannot be used for any military purpose.
  • In accordance with the relevant agreements, Australia’s bilateral safeguards agreement partners report on a calendar year basis. As the Canadian report for 1998 was not available at the time of going to press, the Canadian component of the above figures is provisional.
  • The actual quantities of AONM held in each country, and accounted for by that country pursuant to the relevant agreement with Australia, are considered by ASNO’s counterparts to be confidential information. Totals above have been consolidated from annual reports to ASNO from its counterparts.
  • All quantities are given as tonnes weight of the element uranium, plutonium or thorium. In the case of uranium, the isotope weight of uranium-235 is, for natural uranium 0.711% of the element weight, for depleted uranium 0.20%, and for low enriched uranium in the range 1–5%.
  • Irradiated plutonium comprises plutonium contained in irradiated power reactor fuel, or plutonium reloaded in a power reactor following reprocessing. Plutonium recovered from reprocessing is categorised as separated plutonium until it has been fabricated with uranium as MOX (mixed oxide) fuel and returned to a reactor for further power generation.
  • There may be minor discrepancies in the above figures due to rounding.

(ii) Transfers of AONM during 1998.


Quantity Uranium
Conversion 1,086 Canada
  2,038 Euratom
  1,481 USA

Total transfers between jurisdictions
to conversion plants

Enrichment 112 Euratom
  1,115 USA
  11 Japan

Total transfers between jurisdictions
to enrichment plants

Fuel Fabrication 18 Euratom
  93 Japan
  16 USA
  52 ROK

Total transfers between jurisdictions
to fuel fabrication plants


Total transfers between jurisdictions
to reprocessing plants


1. The above figures are for transfers made during 1998 and do not include transfers made in earlier years. The figures do not include transfers of AONM made within the fuel cycle of a State (or of Euratom), only between jurisdictions.


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