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

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November 20, 2013


TEPCO to remove fuel from reactor building



Tokyo Electric Power Company workers are continuing the process of removing fuel rods from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

Workers on Monday began to remove 22 assemblies of unused fuel rods from racks in the storage pool of the Number 4 reactor building.

They took the 22 assemblies from a total of 1533 in the storage pool. Of the remaining assemblies, 1,331 contain highly radioactive spent fuel rods.

The workers completed by Tuesday night the transfer of the 22 assemblies into a transport container, or cask, within the same pool.

They used a crane on Wednesday to lift the cask out of the pool. They then worked within the reactor building to remove nuclear substances from the cask surface and to check for radioactive water leaks.

They plan on Thursday or later to move the cask out of the reactor building to another storage pool about 100 meters away.

That will mark the first time nuclear fuel rods have been moved outside any of the reactor buildings




Workers removing nuclear fuel from pool



Workers have begun removing nuclear fuel from a storage pool at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant. The procedure is a critical step in the decommissioning of the plant.

The work at the No. 4 reactor building began on Wednesday. Workers are using a crane to lift a container loaded with nuclear fuel out of the pool.

The container, called a "cask," can carry up to 22 fuel units and weighs 91 tons when fully loaded.

The crane is equipped with double cables and a system to mitigate shaking from earthquakes to prevent the cask from falling. Radioactive material could leak if this happens.

Once the cask is out of the pool, workers will remove radioactive substances from its surface, and transfer it to another storage pool about 100 meters away.

The workers have spent the past 2 days transferring nuclear fuel units into the container. They performed this part of the task inside the pool with an underwater camera. Small pieces of debris that fell into the pool during the 2011 accident have made it hard to see.

Tokyo Electric Power Company aims to complete the transfer of the fuel units at the No. 4 reactor building by the end of next year. The pool has 1,533 fuel units, and 1,331 of them contain highly radioactive spent fuel.

November 19, 2013


22 units of nuclear fuel moved to container



The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has transferred a 22nd unit of nuclear fuel in a storage pool into a container at a damaged reactor building.

Tokyo Electric Power Company workers moved 18 unused nuclear fuel units into the container submerged in the pool at the Number 4 reactor building on Tuesday. 4 units had been put into the container on Monday.

The firm plans to lift the container with maximum storage capacity of 22 units out of the pool using a large crane on Wednesday.

The pool holds 1,533 units, of which 1,331 are highly radioactive spent fuel. The rest are unused.

On Tuesday, workers began transferring the 18 unused units into the container at 9 AM, and finished at around 6:30 PM without trouble.

Nov. 19, 2013 - Updated 12:10 UTC

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