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If a major earthquake were to occur… “Will it be safe?” concerns the chairman of the regulatory committee after the damage to the foundation of the pressure vessel at the Fukushima Daiichi Unit 1 reactor is discovered

The foundation supporting the pressure vessel has lost its concrete, leaving the rebar exposed inside the reactor of TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Unit 1 (courtesy of the International Nuclear Decommissioning Research and Development Organization and Hitachi GE Nuclear Energy).

May 25, 2022
At a press conference on May 25, Chairman Toyoshi Sarada of the Nuclear Regulation Authority of Japan (NRAJ) said, in response to an investigation that found rebar exposed in part of the reinforced concrete foundation supporting the Unit 1 reactor pressure vessel at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (Okuma and Futaba, Fukushima Prefecture), “I have concerns about whether it will be safe when a major earthquake occurs. I have concerns about whether it will be safe in the event of a major earthquake. If we could reinforce it, we would.
 Sarada pointed out that “it is possible to speculate” about the possibility that nuclear fuel (debris) melted down during the accidental meltdown (core meltdown) and broke through the pressure vessel, melting the concrete (1.2 meters thick) of the foundation. He expressed a sense of crisis, saying, “It is necessary to consider what would happen if the foundation collapsed.
 He also recognized that it would be difficult to reinforce the foundation in a nuclear reactor with extremely high radiation levels, and said, “We cannot take too long when considering earthquake resistance, and we should remove the debris as soon as possible, even if it is just an earpick, and analyze its condition.
 TEPCO placed an underwater robot into the containment vessel from March 17 to 21 to investigate its interior. Near the base of the bottom of the containment vessel, several lumpy deposits were found that appeared to be debris. Although the accident caused the meltdown of Units 1-3, this was the first time that the exposure of rebar inside the concrete was confirmed. (Kenta Onozawa)


May 29, 2022 - Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , ,

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