Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has unveiled the first model of “third generation” centrifuges that Tehran claims are six times more efficient than the previous variants.

Mr. Ahmadinejad said on Friday at a ceremony in Tehran marking the fourth “national nuclear festival” that 60,000 new generation centrifuges would be installed at the Natanz enrichment plant, state run Press TV reported. Earlier on Friday, Iran's atomic energy chief, Ali Akbar Salehi said that the new machines had successfully passed their mechanical tests. He added that they would have a separation capacity nearly six times higher than the earlier versions, the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported.

Mr. Salehi pointed out that the new machines are capable of spinning 900 times per second, which would allow them to produce 10 kilograms of Uranium Hexafluoride in a year.

Besides, the government had already instructed the country's atomic energy establishment to look for locations where the new enrichment facilities could be installed. In October, atomic energy officials had said that Iranian scientists had developed second generation centrifuges, which had been installed in the enrichment facility in Qom.

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