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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Japan : TEPCO suspects new leak at Fukushima

Via NHK News :

" The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is inspecting a wastewater disposal facility for possible leaks, after finding that its water level had dropped.

Tokyo Electric Power Company has been removing highly radioactive wastewater from the plant's Number 2 and Number 3 reactors to waste disposal facilities within the compound.

The utility initially planned to transfer 14,000 tons, but it now wants to remove an additional 5,000 tons because there has been no noticeable drop in accumulated water in the reactors.

TEPCO suspended the transfer from the Number 3 reactor on Thursday to check whether the disposal facility could hold more water.

It found that the water level at the facility had dropped by 4.8 centimeters over a 20-hour period, meaning some 57 tons of water had been lost.

TEPCO says there has been no increase in radiation levels in nearby groundwater, but that the water level continues to fall.

The utility plans to begin running a water purifier on an experimental basis in early June.

If a leak is found at the waste disposal facility, it could delay the resumption of water transfer from the Number 3 reactor, raising the risk of radioactive wastewater spilling into the sea or seeping underground from the reactor."

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