Associated Press, Nov. 19, 2013: [...] the real challenge: removing melted or partially melted fuel from the three reactors that had meltdowns, and figuring out how to treat and store it so it won’t heat up and start a nuclear reaction again. “This is an unprecedented task that nobody in the world has achieved. We still face challenges that must be overcome,” said Hajimu Yamana, a Kyoto University nuclear engineer who heads a government-affiliated agency that is overseeing technological research and development for the cleanup. [...] Computer simulations show the melted fuel in Unit 1, whose core damage was the most extensive, has breached the bottom of the primary containment vessel and even partially eaten into its concrete foundation, coming within about 30 centimeters (one foot) of leaking into the ground. “We just can’t be sure until we actually see the inside of the reactors,” Yamana said.
See also: ABC Correspondent: Nobody knows where Fukushima's melted cores are now, expert says -- Tepco admitted fuel "is actually eating through the concrete... hopefully it’s not eating through any further" (AUDIO)
Published: November 20th, 2013 at 12:45 am ET
- Japan Nuclear Engineer: I don’t think they’ll ever get Fukushima’s melted cores; Will probably start covering reactors in concrete — German Expert: May encase areas in sarcophagus November 4, 2013
- IAEA Paper: Corium was not cooled in majority of tests using water injected from above, as done at Fukushima — Were studying how to stop molten core from melting through concrete December 26, 2013
- Nuclear Expert: Water may NOT have stopped melted fuel from going down into concrete at Fukushima — I raised this issue years ago, but it’s too difficult for regulators to deal with (VIDEO) November 6, 2013
- IAEA ***NOT for distribution***: Molten core is suspected to have penetrated Fukushima containment vessel — Prime Minister on 3/11: We couldn’t be in Tokyo if melted fuel went through containment vessel (VIDEO) December 18, 2013
- ABC Correspondent: Nobody knows where Fukushima’s melted cores are now, expert says — Tepco admitted fuel “is actually eating through the concrete… hopefully it’s not eating through any further” (AUDIO) November 4, 2013