The explosion that occurred at the Natanz nuclear facility on Thursday is believed to have been caused by another cyberattack; Nuclear centrifuges were damaged in the explosion; It’s likely that Iran’s uranium hexafluoride gas was targeted in these recent attacks.
Following Thursday’s explosion in Natanz, Iran, newly surfaced reports indicate that the explosion at the Natanz nuclear facility took place via another enemy cyberattack. One Kuwaiti news outlet is citing Israel as the source of the attack, which would follow on the heels of several recent cyber exchanges between the Islamic Republic and the Jewish State.
Interestingly enough, it’s believed there are similarities between Thursday’s attack and the Stuxnet computer attack back in 2010.
The cyberattacks that took place in both Netanz on Thursday and Parchin last week share something in common – they both targeted Iran’s uranium hexafluoride gas (UF6), which is used to enrich their uranium. According to the report from Kuwait, “This is likely to be an electronic attack on the computer network that controls the storage compression tanks. Iran will need about two months to compensate for the gas that was lost.”
It’s believed that Iran has lost up to 80% of this much-needed gas.
Iran began openly enriching their uranium at a much higher rate in 2019. This was in response to the growing tension amid the Trump administration’s decision to step away from the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or Iran Nuclear Deal.
While Tehran made the announcement publicly in 2019, evidence revealed that the Iranians had been violating the terms of the JCPOA for a very long time.
Centrifuges are a necessary component in order for the uranium to be enriched. Iran upgraded their nuclear centrifuges in 2019 and several of these were damaged in Thursday’s explosion.