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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

IAEA : Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident Update (23 March, 1:10 UTC)

From IAEA, their latest update with regards to the efforts currently being taken to restore power to the nuclear plant in Fukushima, excerpt :

" Restoring power to Fukushima Daiichi

Without electrical power, cooling systems at Fukushima Daiichi’s six reactors cannot operate. Many of the problems facing the nuclear power plant stem from the loss of electrical power at the site following the massive earthquake and tsunami on 11 March. The earthquake cut off external power to the plant and the tsunami disabled backup diesel generators.

Japanese officials have been working to restore power to the facility, and their efforts are organized in three phases.

Units 1 and 2

Reactor cooling systems at these units are severely hampered. There is suspected damage to the nuclear fuel in both units. Workers have successfully connected off-site electrical supplies to a transformer at Unit 2 on 19 March and later to at least one electrical distribution panel inside the plant. Technicians are conducting diagnostic tests to determine the integrity of the reactor’s electrical systems.

Japanese authorities plan to connect Unit 1 sometime after Unit 2. Because of the degraded condition of the Unit1 reactor building, this work may take more time compared to Unit 2, were the reactor building sustained significantly less damage since the earthquake intact.

Units 3 and 4

Reactor cooling systems at Unit 3 are severely hampered. There is suspected damage to the reactor’s fuel, and the condition of its spent fuel pool is uncertain. Unit 4 had been shut down for routine maintenance � and all its fuel was removed to the reactor building’s spent fuel pool � prior to the earthquake. There is therefore no concern about fuel in the reactor core, but considerable concern about the fuel from the spent fuel pool.

Workers are moving toward restoring electricity to both units, but their progress is uncertain."

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