Title: Fukushima Digs In for Decades of Cleanup
Source: Wall St. Journal
Author: MITSURU OBE
Date: March 8, 2013
[...] Last year, a radiation reading of 73 sieverts was recorded inside the containment structure of reactor 2—a level so high that it wouldn’t only kill a human instantly, but it also could even disable a remote-controlled robot.
Occasional spates of high readings have been noted at the plant, and Tepco says they could point to molten fuel outside the reactor. However, reactor 2 has had more such spates than the other reactors and has logged sudden jumps in temperature over the past year, which Tepco has blamed on faulty thermometers. Some experts say it is even possible that the molten fuel may not be cooled properly, and that the unit isn’t truly stable.
“The fuel may be kept cool as long as plenty of water is sprayed on it, but once the amount of water is reduced, there could be a problem,” says Fumiya Tanabe, a former senior researcher at the government’s Japan Atomic Energy Agency.
Tepco says the unit is “under control.” [...]
Published: March 9th, 2013 at 7:06 pm ET
- New images show all melted fuel is “gone” from Fukushima reactor — Experts: Molten core may have reached outer environment, can’t tell if fuel is still contained — Official: “We presume fuel still in containment vessel… but we need to check one day” (PHOTOS & VIDEO) March 20, 2015
- New York Times: Experts warn molten fuel may be underground beneath Fukushima reactor buildings — Doubt that it can be extricated September 4, 2013
- Top U.S. Official: “The reality is, no technology exists anywhere to solve problem” of Fukushima’s melted fuel — TV: Molten mass “will scorch into the earth” if not cooled, a ‘China Syndrome’; Geysers of radioactive steam shooting up for miles around (VIDEOS) July 3, 2014
- Tepco: Water injections may no longer be able to properly cool down melted nuclear fuel in Reactor No. 2 — Says criticality is not taking place (VIDEO) February 6, 2012
- NHK: Scientists to use detectors ‘deep underground’ to look for Fukushima fuel; It’s ‘believed’ to have cooled down, but no one can check — Officials: We don’t know if water is covering fuel — Expert: Water must be circulating around fuel or it will melt again (VIDEO) August 21, 2014