Israel is expanding Dimona nuclear research facility.
Image Credit: Spacewill
According to satellite images, on Thursday it was revealed that Israel was expanding its top-secret Dimona nuclear research facility located in Negev desert.
The facility which was renamed to Shimon Peres Negev Nuclear Research Center after the late Israeli Prime Minister and President Shimon Peres in 2018, was used to produced the required purity of nuclear material to produce nuclear weapons. The facility was built in the 1950s with extensive help from the the French government. By the end of that decade, there were 2,500 French citizens living in Dimona. All of the French citizens were not allowed to write home directly, and had to be under the cover of official deniability.
According to Pavel Povdig, a researcher that works with the programme on science and global security at Princeton University, he believes that the expansion started in late 2018 or early 2019.
It appears that the construction started quite early in 2019, or late 2018, so it’s been underway for about two years, but that’s all we can say at this point.Pavel Povdig.
Based on the satellite images, construction seem to be happening several hundred metres from the south and west of the nuclear facility. The reason for this expansion is unknown.