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information about Fukushima published in English in Japanese media info publiée en anglais dans la presse japonaise

Robots needed for Fukushima

September 4, 2016

Robot technologies sought for Fukushima reactors




Japan's academic societies are soliciting robot technologies that will allow direct surveying of molten fuel in the crippled nuclear reactors in Fukushima.

The atomic energy society and robotics society are seeking ideas for remotely-controlled robots that could travel 25 meters through water and complicated ductworks to reach the fuel and return with samples.

Removing the molten fuel is considered the most difficult step in dismantling the plant.

The Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power Company have been using robots to survey around the reactors, with a hope to begin removing the molten fuel by 2021.

But highly dangerous conditions in the buildings and the accumulation of tainted water have hampered the work, and workers have yet to reach the molten fuel.

Officials at the societies say they want to test some of the ideas at a research facility near the plant and hope to use them in actual probes.

The deadline for applications is set for the end of January.

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