Asahi Shimbun, Apr 11, 2015 (emphasis added): [A] robot sent to probe a highly radioactive containment vessel of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant got stuck hours after it was deployed, dealing a major blow to decommissioning work… TEPCO has yet to determine why the device became immovable… the operators tugged on the robot’s cable and sent instructions for it to change shape, but it still would not move… The robot is essential to carrying out preliminary studies…
Reuters, Apr 14, 2015: Eerie footage from inside destroyed Fukushima reactor… [the robot has] lost control and become unconnected… Monday (April 13), Tepco decided to cut the wire to the robot and leave it in inside… Tepco has one more of the same type of robot…
AP, Apr 13, 2015: A 2 ½ minute edited compilation… showed steam wafting from inside the dark container [and] debris that looked like small rocks and metal parts. The images contained numerous white dots believed to be caused by gamma rays. [TEPCO said] the levels were significantly lower than anticipated… Without more data, it will be difficult to figure out exactly how to safely locate and remove the radioactive debris. Nuclear officials are expected to revise the plant’s decades-long decommissioning roadmap in the coming weeks, with more leeway and options in case earlier plans prove unfeasible.
NHK transcript, Apr 13, 2015: “At one point the reading shoots above 20 sieverts [actually 24.9 sieverts/hr].”
Kyodo News, Apr 7, 2015: In October 2012, radiation levels inside the containment vessel… measured up to 11 sieverts per hour.
NHK, Apr 12, 2015: TEPCO abandons robot in reactor… it stalled after moving about 10 meters… the robot has remained immobile and is not showing any sign of improvement. That’s forced the company to give up recovering the device.
NHK, Apr 13, 2015: The 2-minute 40-second-long clip shows mainly steam. It is thought that water at the bottom of the containment vessel is being evaporated by the heat of the melted nuclear fuel… [TEPCO] cut the remote control cable for the robot after giving up on its recovery on Sunday, and postponed a second survey with another robot.
Published: April 14th, 2015 at 9:12 am ET
- CNN: “Strange green glow” seen inside Fukushima reactor — “Yellow, blue-green and other colors could be seen” — Radiation dose hits record high near 50 sieverts per hour — 15 seconds of video removed just before levels spiked 1,000% (VIDEO) April 20, 2015
- Nuclear Engineer: Footage shows me “it’s broken… there’s really no containment” at Fukushima Reactor 3 — I expect many different kinds of leaks will be found — Radioactive contaminants “basically floating freely” (AUDIO) January 24, 2014
- Kyodo: Robot data reveals hole in Unit 2 suspected to be almost 10 square cm; Highly radioactive water draining out bottom of containment vessel — Tepco model shows molten fuel barely underwater — Temperature irregulaties started earlier this month (GRAPHIC) January 30, 2014
- Japan Times: “Deadly” radiation levels detected outside Fukushima containment vessel — “Details behind situation are unknown” — Officials unable to grasp location of melted nuclear fuel — “Impossible” to plan for decommissioning October 30, 2015
- Radiation readings in Fukushima reactor at highest level since crisis began April 27, 2011