THE NUCLEAR COMMUNICATIONS NETWORK News in Brief/ No. 98 / 14th April 2011
Tepco Completes High-Level Radioactive Water Transfer From Unit 2 Trench
14 Apr (NucNet): Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) has completed the transfer of 660 tonnes of high-level radioactive water from a trench in the unit 2 turbine building to a condenser at the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear plant.
Tepco said the transfer, using an underwater pump, began at 19:35 on 13 April local time (00:35 central European time) and ended at 17:04 local time today (14 April).
The contaminated water needed to be moved because there was a risk it might have continued to leak into cable trenches and pits outside the unit’s controlled zone and from there flow into the sea.
Contaminated water has also been found in the turbine hall basements of units 1 and 3, although its level of radioactivity is much lower than the water at unit 2.
The total amount of water to be removed is estimated at more than 60,000 tonnes, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said.
The water has been hampering work to restore the reactors’ cooling systems.
Tepco said it had also completed the task of installing barriers around a breakwater on the southern perimeter of the plant to prevent radioactive water leaking into the sea from units 3 and 4.
Efforts are continuing to cool reactors at the plant. The IAEA said today that fresh water is being continuously injected into the reactor pressure vessel (RPV) at unit 1 using a temporary electric pump with offsite power.
At units 2 and 3, fresh water is being continuously injected into the RPVs through the fire extinguisher lines, also using temporary electric pumps with offsite power.