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Originally posted by princeofpeace
That would put them ahead of where Iraq was then i think. Their crash bomb project was said to have taken up to a year to complete. Anyone know how many centrifuges the Iraq facility had going?
Iraq's main effort to produce U-235 was by the electromagnetic process (called EMIS). In this process, uranium atoms are ionized (given an electrical charge) then sent in a stream past powerful magnets.
Iraq also attempted to enrich uranium with high-speed centrifuges. This effort had lower priority than the EMIS program.
Iraq planned an ambitious research and development effort for its centrifuges. From mid 1987 to late 1989, Iraqi scientists conducted trials on a "model 1" centrifuge. It was an early Beams-type gas centrifuge using oil bearings, which ran into difficulties with vibration. It also consumed large amounts of power. Then from mid-1988 to mid-1991, Iraq ran trials on a "model 2" centrifuge.