CINCINNATI (AP) — The Department of Energy said Friday it plans to work with the developer of a uranium enrichment project in southern Ohio on research to reduce technical and financial risks that have held up the project.

Bethesda, Md.-based USEC Inc. had applied for a $2 billion loan guarantee for construction of the American Centrifuge Plant in Piketon, about 65 miles south of Columbus.

The Energy Department says the loan application is still pending. Meanwhile, it will ask for congressional approval to help fund the research program.

An energy department official says the research and development program would allow officials to make sure the project would work on a commercial basis. A hope is that the results of the research will show the project can work commercially and help attract investors.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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