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Monday, March 28, 2011

Japan trying to remove highly radioactive water at troubled nuke plant

Via Kyodo News :

" Work to remove highly radioactive water from inside buildings at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi plant continued Monday, with the radiation level of a pool in the basement of the No. 2 reactor's turbine building measured at more than 1,000 millisieverts per hour.

Removal of such water in four reactor units is necessary to reduce the risk of more workers being exposed to radioactive substances, as the risk hinders efforts to restore the plant's crippled cooling functions, which are crucial to overcoming the crisis.

Meanwhile, a strong earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.5 jolted Miyagi Prefecture and its vicinity in northeastern Japan on Monday morning, but plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co. said the quake was unlikely to affect work to restore the reactors' key cooling functions.

The utility, known as TEPCO, said early Monday the concentration of radioactive substances of the pool at the No. 2 reactor was 100,000 times higher than usual for water in a reactor core, correcting its earlier analysis of 10 million times higher.

The government's nuclear safety agency has instructed the plant operator to take necessary measures to avoid such errors, which have undermined the credibility of TEPCO's assessments."

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