TEPCO has added an additional option to their plans for the removal of spent fuel from unit 1 at Fukushima Daiichi. Debris removal work from the top floor of unit 1 has been slow going and has required various methods to prevent dust scattering.
This new “plan b” involves installing a cover over the building again before removing the overhead crane and the fuel handling crane from the spent fuel pool area. TEPCO managed to remove the roof and debris beneath it from other areas of the top floor without a cover. They don’t clearly explain why this area is so problematic it may require a cover.
TEPCO cites worker exposures, rainwater infiltration and dust as issues causing the consideration of a second plan.
The concerns about worker exposures, dust scattering and rainwater for this last area of debris removal may indicate that this area has more problematic types of radioactive debris rather than just high radiation levels. Unit 1 was hastily covered with a tent cover soon after the initial disaster. The location(s) of the fuel debris for unit 1 has yet to be determined. Multiple inspections inside containment at unit 1 have failed to located fuel debris.
TEPCO document in English (machine translated)
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