Joint Sino-US nuclear training center on track

Updated: 2014-03-26 09:04

By Zhao Lei (China Daily USA)

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Construction on the Center of Excellence on Nuclear Security, a joint project of China and the United States, is progressing smoothly, and the facility should begin operations by the end of 2015, said Wang Yiren, vice-chairman of the China Atomic Energy Authority.

The center, an idea originally put forward by then president Hu Jintao in April 2010 during the Washington Nuclear Security Summit, broke ground in December and will bolster the nuclear security capacity in China and throughout Asia, Wang said.

Located in Changyang Science and Technology Park in the southwestern outskirts of Beijing, the center is designed to encourage international cooperation and information exchange on nuclear security, materials control and exports. It will also provide services such as training and tests as well as display advanced technology.

Upon its completion, the center will be Asia's best training and exchange instrument for nuclear security in terms of size, equipment and technological capability, Wang said.

China and the US signed a Memorandum of Understanding to set up the center in January 2011 during Hu's visit to Washington.

Deng Ge, an official in charge of construction, said the center will consist of a number of facilities, including a building devoted to testing and analysis, and an environmental lab. Equipment provided by the US will be installed in early 2015, he said.

The center is the largest cooperative project in nuclear security between China and the US and will be able to train about 2,000 nuclear security personnel each year, Deng said.

China, which began building nuclear power stations in 1985, has 17 reactors in operation and 31 under construction. Nuclear power accounts for 2 percent of the country's electricity.

(China Daily USA 03/26/2014 page4)