Homepage > News > World > 

Australia's researchers join forces for nuclear power

2009-09-22 14:41 BJT

CANBERRA, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- Australia's nuclear science center and a major university have joined forces to develop nuclear power that produces no radioactive waste, Australian Associated Press reported on Tuesday.

The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization (ANSTO) - which runs Sydney's Lucas Heights reactor - and Canberra's Australian National University will jointly develop a waste-free energy solution through so-called fusion power.

However, the research will also explore uranium-based nuclear power, which Labor campaigned against at the last election.

Australian Science Minister Kim Carr, who signed the partnership, was reluctant to back the research goal of clean nuclear energy.

"We are agnostic about particular fields of research that our scholars pursue," Carr told Australian Associated Press.

"It's not a question about taking an open mind or a closed mind."

The researchers are working on nuclear fusion harnessing the energy of water-derived chemical elements hydrogen and deuterium.

Unlike existing nuclear fission power stations overseas, it does not rely on uranium and produces no radioactive waste.

But Carr said the government was still committed to ensuring Australia's coal industry and renewable solar, wind and geo-thermal sectors had a future.

Editor: Du Xiaodan | Source: Xinhua