Thursday, March 31, 2011

Japan fails to remove its N-plant water

Fukushima Daiichi power plant in Japan

Source: Press TV

Japanese have failed to remove the radiation-contaminated water at Fukushima power plant that was hit by a destructive earthquake earlier this month.

Operators at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi power plant halted the pumping of the contaminated water at reactor one while at reactor two, the radioactive core appears to have melted through the bottom of its containment vessel onto a concrete floor.

The contaminated water flooding through some parts of the facility has forced directors of the operation to move the water to other parts of the plant to give workers access to the damaged reactors, the Japanese daily paper Asahi Shimbun reported.

Fukushima's operator Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) has decided to decommission four of the six reactors at the site. It is also planning to shift thousands of tons of contaminated water into trenches on the grounds of the plant.

The storage trenches can contain a total amount of 13,300 tons while some 10,000 tons of radioactive water has already poured into them.

Earlier today, Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency announced that radioactive iodine-131 at a concentration of 3,355 times the legal level was detected in a sample taken Tuesday afternoon near Fukushima nuclear plant.

On Monday, TEPCO said highly radioactive water, with the radiation level of more than 1,000 millisieverts per hour, was found in a tunnel near the turbine building of the Number 2 reactor and around 55m from the sea.

A destructive March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan's northern coast set off nuclear problems by knocking out power to cooling systems at the Fukushima nuclear plant, and caused radiation leaks.

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