melted fuel


Tepco to deploy robot for first contact with melted fuel from Fukushima No. 1 nuclear disaster

The Japan Times

The owner of the wrecked Fukushima No. 1 power plant is trying this week to touch melted fuel at the bottom of the plant for the first time since the disaster almost eight years ago, a tiny but key step toward retrieving the radioactive material amid a ¥21.5 trillion ($195 billion) cleanup effort. Tokyo Electric Power Co. Holdings Inc. will on Wednesday insert a robot developed by Toshiba Corp. to make contact with material believed to contain melted fuel inside the containment vessel of the unit 2 reactor, one of three units that melted down after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. "We plan to confirm if we can move or lift the debris or if it crumbles," Joji Hara, a spokesman for Tepco said by phone Friday. Tepco doesn't plan to collect samples during the survey. The country is seeking to clean up the Fukushima disaster, the world's worst atomic accident since Chernobyl, which prompted a mass shutdown of its reactors.


Toshiba unveils robot with tongs to probe melted Fukushima nuclear fuel

The Japan Times

YOKOHAMA - Toshiba Corp. unveiled a remote-controlled robot with tongs on Monday that it hopes will be able to probe the inside of one of the three damaged reactors at Japan's tsunami-hit Fukushima nuclear plant and grip chunks of highly radioactive melted fuel. The device is designed to slide down an extendable 11-meter (36-foot) long pipe and touch melted fuel inside reactor 2's primary containment vessel. The reactor was built by Toshiba and GE. An earlier probe carrying a camera captured images of pieces of melted fuel in the reactor last year, and robotic probes in the two other reactors have detected traces of damaged fuel, but the exact location, contents and other details remain largely unknown. Toshiba's energy systems unit said experiments with the new probe planned in February are key to determining the proper equipment and technologies needed to remove the fuel debris, the most challenging part of the decommissioning process expected to take decades.


Toshiba unveils robot to probe melted Fukushima nuclear...

Daily Mail

Toshiba unveiled a remote-controlled robot with tongs on Monday that it hopes will be able to probe the inside of one of the three damaged reactors at Japan's tsunami-hit Fukushima nuclear plant and grip chunks of highly radioactive melted fuel. The device is designed to slide down an extendable 11-meter (36-foot) long pipe and touch melted fuel inside the Unit 2 reactor's primary containment vessel. The reactor was built by Toshiba and GE. An earlier probe carrying a camera captured images of pieces of melted fuel in the reactor last year, and robotic probes in the two other reactors have detected traces of damaged fuel, but the exact location, contents and other details remain largely unknown. Toshiba unveiled the device carrying tongs that comes out of a long telescopic pipe for an internal probe in one of three damaged reactor chambers at Japan's tsunami-hit Fukushima nuclear plant - this time to touch chunks of melted fuel Toshiba's energy systems unit said experiments with the new probe planned in February are key to determining the proper equipment and technologies needed to remove the fuel debris, the most challenging part of the decommissioning process expected to take decades.


Robohub Digest 07/17: World record breaking drones, bio-inspired 'bots and roadblocks ahead for self-driving cars in Asia

Robohub

A quick, hassle-free way to stay on top of robotics news, our robotics digest is released on the first Monday of every month. Sign up to get it in your inbox. From wacky talking Einsteins to clumsy security'bots, from speedy drones to the underwater operations at Fukushima, it's been another busy month. So let's kick off our July review with a look at robots in action! You'd be forgiven for missing this first one.


Watch: Fukushima Robot Finds Chunks Of Nuclear Fuel Debris Underwater

International Business Times

An underwater robot deployed into one of Fukushima's defunct nuclear reactors discovered what appeared to be hunks of melted fuel debris. Video recorded by the robot showed "lava-like" lumps inside the submerged No. 3 reactor. The robot was sent into the reactor through a pipe meant to prevent the escape of radioactive gas, Reuters reported Thursday. Operators aimed for the machine to locate radioactive melted fuel rods in order to remove them and continue decommissioning the plant. Discovering the melted fuel would mark a major accomplishment for plant's cleanup process.


Fukushima: robot images show massive deposits thought to be melted nuclear fuel

Guardian Energy

Images captured by an underwater robot on Saturday showed massive deposits believed to be melted nuclear fuel covering the floor of a damaged reactor at Japan's destroyed Fukushima nuclear plant. The robot found large amounts of solidified lava-like rocks and lumps in layers as thick as 1m on the bottom inside a main structure called the pedestal that sits underneath the core inside the primary containment vessel of Fukushima's Unit 3 reactor, said the plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co. On Friday, the robot spotted suspected debris of melted fuel for the first time since the 2011 earthquake and tsunami caused multiple meltdowns and destroyed the plant. The three-day investigation of Unit 3 ended on Saturday. Locating and analysing the fuel debris and damage in each of the plant's three wrecked reactors is crucial for decommissioning the plant. The search for melted fuel in the two other reactors has so far been unsuccessful because of damage and extremely high radiation levels.


Robot finds likely melted fuel heap inside Fukushima reactor

Associated Press

TOKYO (AP) — Images captured by an underwater robot showed massive deposits believed to be melted nuclear fuel covering the floor of a damaged reactor at Japan's crippled Fukushima nuclear plant.


Robot finds likely melted nuclear fuel deposits inside Fukushima reactor

FOX News

TOKYO – Images captured by an underwater robot showed massive deposits believed to be melted nuclear fuel covering the floor of a damaged reactor at Japan's crippled Fukushima nuclear plant. The robot found large amounts of solidified lava-like rocks and lumps in layers as thick as 3 feet on the bottom inside of a main structure called the pedestal that sits underneath the core inside the primary containment vessel of Fukushima's Unit 3 reactor, said the plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co. On Friday, the robot spotted suspected debris of melted fuel for the first time since the 2011 earthquake and tsunami caused multiple meltdowns and destroyed the plant. The three-day probe of Unit 3 ended Saturday. Locating and analyzing the fuel debris and damage in each of the plant's three wrecked reactors is crucial for decommissioning the plant. The search for melted fuel in the two other reactors has so far been unsuccessful because of damage and extremely high radiation levels.


Fukushima Robot Finds Nuclear Fuel Debris 'Hanging Like Icicles' In Power Plant

International Business Times

A robot sent into Fukushima's defunct nuclear power plant found what could potentially be melted nuclear fuel debris -- hanging in the form of "icicles." The machine was deployed to locate the source of the melted debris and potentially clean it up. Officials from the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), the company tasked with decommissioning the power plant, said the objects the robot spotted were inside the interior of reactor three. The icicle-like objects were hanging onto a control rod drive attached to the bottom of a pressure vessel which holds the core, the Japan Times reported Friday. Read: Fukushima's'Unimaginable' Nuclear Radiation So Destructive, Not Even Robots Can Survive The robot, nicknamed "the Little Sunfish," was sent into the plant Wednesday.


Fukushima robot finds potential fuel debris hanging like icicles in reactor 3

The Japan Times

Tokyo Electric said Friday that a remotely controlled robot investigating the interior of reactor 3 at the Fukushima No. 1 power plant has finally spotted objects that could potentially be fuel debris. The objects look like icicles hanging around a control rod drive attached to the bottom of the pressure vessel, which holds the core, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. said at an evening news conference. Enclosed by the huge primary containment vessel, the pressure vessel originally contained the fuel rod assemblies. But the rods melted into a puddle and pierced the bottom of the pressure vessel once the plant lost power after being swamped by the monstrous tsunami of March 11, 2011. The robot also captured images of lumps of material that appears to have melted and resolidified near the wall of the pedestal, a concrete structure that supports the pressure vessel.