Japan and Russia will carry out joint research to demonstrate the fabrication of MOX vibro-packed fuel assemblies. The MOX fuel assemblies, which will be irradiated in Russia’s BN-600 fast breeder reactor, are seen as a way of disposing of surplus weapons-grade plutonium.

The research and development agreement was signed on 20 August by JNC and Pesco of Japan, and by Russia’s Research Institute of Atomic Reactors. JNC has been carrying out joint research with Russian institutes since 1999, aimed at nonproliferation and nuclear disarmament.