Skip to main content

Sunday Update

UPDATE AS OF 11:30 A.M. EDT, SUNDAY, APRIL 10:
Management of water continues to be a top priority at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

TEPCO has begun to install steel sheets and a silt barrier at the intake structure for reactor 2 to prevent further spreading of radioactive water that is leaking from the power plant, Kyodo news service has reported. Plans are under way to install similar barriers at other locations near the plant in an effort to contain contaminated water within the plant's bay. Last week, TEPCO used a sealant to block a leak from a concrete enclosure near reactor 2.

Meanwhile, 60,000 tons of contaminated water must be removed from the reactor 1, 2, and 3 turbine buildings and nearby underground enclosures, the International Atomic Energy Agency reported. The water will be pumped into the condensers of each reactor and into a radioactive water storage tank. TEPCO made room in the tank by discharging low-level radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean. TEPCO also has ordered temporary storage tanks for the site.

Injection of cooling water into reactors 1, 2 and 3 continues. Workers are spraying water into the spent fuel pools for reactors 1-4 as needed. TEPCO also continues to inject nitrogen gas into the primary containment of reactor 1. The nitrogen will prevent possible ignition of hydrogen that may be accumulating in the containment.

The utility is now using remote-controlled bulldozers and power shovels to remove radioactive rubble from around the plant. Operators are using cameras on the equipment and elsewhere on the site to control the equipment from hundreds of yards away. The rubble will be stored at the plant site.

The Japan education ministry is expected this week to release radiation exposure safety guidelines for school children in areas outside the evacuation zone surrounding the power plant, the Japan Atomic Industrial Forum reported. The guidelines will require schools to suspend classes, stop outdoor lessons, or ensure students wear face masks if radiation surpasses certain levels.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Knowing What You’ve Got Before It’s Gone in Nuclear Energy

The following is a guest post from Matt Wald, senior director of policy analysis and strategic planning at NEI. Follow Matt on Twitter at @MattLWald.

Nuclear energy is by far the largest source of carbon prevention in the United States, but this is a rough time to be in the business of selling electricity due to cheap natural gas and a flood of subsidized renewable energy. Some nuclear plants have closed prematurely, and others likely will follow.
In recent weeks, Exelon and the Omaha Public Power District said that they might close the Clinton, Quad Cities and Fort Calhoun nuclear reactors. As Joni Mitchell’s famous song says, “Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone.”
More than 100 energy and policy experts will gather in a U.S. Senate meeting room on May 19 to talk about how to improve the viability of existing nuclear plants. The event will be webcast, and a link will be available here.
Unlike other energy sources, nuclear power plants get no specia…

Making Clouds for a Living

Donell Banks works at Southern Nuclear’s Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 as a shift supervisor in Operations, but is in the process of transitioning to his newly appointed role as the daily work controls manager. He has been in the nuclear energy industry for about 11 years.

I love what I do because I have the unique opportunity to help shape the direction and influence the culture for the future of nuclear power in the United States. Every single day presents a new challenge, but I wouldn't have it any other way. As a shift supervisor, I was primarily responsible for managing the development of procedures and programs to support operation of the first new nuclear units in the United States in more than 30 years. As the daily work controls manager, I will be responsible for oversight of the execution and scheduling of daily work to ensure organizational readiness to operate the new units.

I envision a nuclear energy industry that leverages the technology of today to improve efficiency…

Nuclear: Energy for All Political Seasons

The electoral college will soon confirm a surprise election result, Donald Trump. However, in the electricity world, there are fewer surprises – physics and economics will continue to apply, and Republicans and Democrats are going to find a lot to like about nuclear energy over the next four years.

In a Trump administration, the carbon conversation is going to be less prominent. But the nuclear value proposition is still there. We bring steady jobs to rural areas, including in the Rust Belt, which put Donald Trump in office. Nuclear plants keep the surrounding communities vibrant.

We hold down electricity costs for the whole economy. We provide energy diversity, reducing the risk of disruption. We are a critical part of America’s industrial infrastructure, and the importance of infrastructure is something that President-Elect Trump has stressed.

One of our infrastructure challenges is natural gas pipelines, which have gotten more congested as extremely low gas prices have pulled m…