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Iran developing megascience infrastructure, cooperating with Russia: Official

Javad Karimi-Sabet, the vice chairman of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI)

The vice chairman of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) says the country is working on its mega science infrastructure and cooperating in projects with Russia.

Javad Karimi-Sabet made the remarks recently on the sidelines of the World Youth Festival in the Russian resort city of Sochi.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is not only trying to create megascience infrastructures in the country in order to improve … food security, environment, health, treatment and ultimately sustainable development, but it has also put on its agenda active partnership in projects such as Russia’s PIK,” he said.

The official was referring to the PIK high-flux research reactor at St. Petersburg's Konstantinov Institute of Nuclear Physics. It is the world's largest beam-type reactor with a thermal power of 100 MW.

He said that the PIK project can serve as the basis for scientific and technological cooperation between Tehran and Moscow in megascience projects.

“Megascience projects are large-scale and long-term scientific projects that often require significant investment and international cooperation,” Karimi-Sabet added.

“They generally have the ability to influence … the national economy and its macro components such as economic growth, human capital development, technological advances, national image and soft power, as well as international cooperation.”

He also proposed the creation of a systematic mechanism for the governance of scientific and technological interactions between Iran and Russia, with a focus on megascience projects.

Iran and Russia, as two close and strategic allies, have over the past years deepened their relations.

They enjoy cordial ties in various fields, including the nuclear industry, despite being under heavy Western sanctions.

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