Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation

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The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) "is Australia 's national nuclear research and development organisation and the centre of Australian nuclear expertise." [1]

Reactor operator

ANSTO's general purpose is prescribed by the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987. With a salaried staff of around 950, ANSTO is responsible for delivering specialised advice, scientific services and products to government, industry, academia and other research organisations. [2] ANSTO's nuclear infrastructure includes the research reactor, HIFAR (High Flux Australian Reactor), which closed in January 2007, [3] particle accelerators, radiopharmaceutical production facilities, and a range of other unique research facilities. HIFAR was used to produce radioactive products for use in medicine and industry, as a source of neutron beams for scientific research and to irradiate silicon for semiconductor applications.

A replacement for HIFAR, OPAL – the Open Pool Australian Light-water reactor – reached full power in November 2006. [4] It is now Australia's only nuclear reactor.

ANSTO is a member of the World Nuclear Association.[5],

Conflict of Interest in ANSTO Research

In May 2006 ANSTO released a report called Introducing Nuclear Power To Australia, prepared for it by British nuclear proponent Professor John Gittus. [6].

In a synopsis of his report Gittus is described only as "a consultant and adviser to government ministries, public bodies and private industry." But the release of the full report revealed that Professor Gittus runs Lloyd's of London Syndicate 1176, the biggest commercial insurer of nuclear power stations and other nuclear facilities in the world, and makes significant profits from the nuclear industry. This constitutes a massive conflict of interest for Prof Gittus and ANSTO, but the information is only disclosed on page 264 of the report's 267 pages. [7]

While the government claimed that the report concludes that nuclear power in Australia would be cost-competitive with coal and gas, in fact, "it looks at the cost of a new style or first of a kind reactor. And it shows that unless the Government took on more than half the financial risk of building it, nuclear energy would not be viable. It would cost twice as much as coal-fired power, and any private operator that took on the costs and risks, the report says, would quickly go into liquidation. . . The report also assumes that Government bears at least half the liability for any nuclear accident, without which Ian O. Smith at ANSTO concedes, nuclear power would be uninsurable." [8]



Board Members (August 2007) [9]

Board Members (June 2006)

(Source: )

Former Board Members


Mail Address:
PMB 1 Menai
NSW 2234 Australia

Street Address:
New Illawarra Road
Lucas Heights NSW Australia
Phone: 61 2 9717 3111
Fax: 61 2 9543 5097
E-mail: enquiries AT

Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch


  1. ANSTO website, accessed December 2007.
  2. Mission and Strategy, ANSTO website, accessed December 2007].
  3. HIFAR, ANSTO website, accessed December 2007.
  4. Opal Progress Report, ANSTO website, accessed December 2007.
  5. World Nuclear Association List of Members, WNA Website Accessed December 2007
  6. John Gittus CV
  7. Stephen Long, Credibility of Nuclear Report Questioned, PM, Radio National, June 5, 2006.
  8. Stephen Long, Credibility of Nuclear Report Questioned, PM, Radio National, June 5, 2006.
  9. Board Members: ANSTO Board as of 1 July 2007, Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation, accessed August 13, 2007.

External links