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Japan:Cooling system operating at No. 2 reactor + Related News

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Laaska News  May 31,2011

New reactor postponed at Shimane nuke power plant
Oxygen cylinder bursts near No. 4 reactor
Cooling system operating at No. 2 reactor

The operator of the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has started operating a system to effectively cool water in a spent fuel pool in the plant’s No.2 reactor building.

The Tokyo Electric Power Company on Tuesday set up at the building the first circulatory cooling system to be installed at the plant since the accident in March.

The utility has been pumping about 50 tons of water into the pool every few days.

The pool’s temperature is around 70 degrees Celsius, apparently producing steam that has filled the building and resulted in a humidity level of 99.9 percent.

The humidity and high radiation levels have been hampering repair work at the site.

The new system is to pump water out of the pool to a heat exchanger and return the water to the pool as coolant.

The firm says it plans to lower the pool’s temperature to around 40 degrees Celsius in a month and hopes to reduce the humidity level before installing equipment to remove radioactive substances in the building.

The firm says it will start operating similar systems at the plant’s No.1 and 3 reactors in June, and at the No.4 reactor in July.


New reactor postponed at Shimane nuke power plant


The Chugoku Electric Power Company says it will postpone the start of the commercial operation of a new reactor at the Shimane nuclear power station without setting a timetable.

The utility said on Tuesday that additional safety measures are needed to start the Number 3 reactor being constructed at the plant.

The company had planned to put nuclear fuel rods in the reactor and start a test operation in June, and make it commercially operational in March next year.

Following the accident at the Fukushima plant, the utility faces the need to build seawalls that can withstand 15-meter-high tsunami waves and to think of ways to prevent the inundation of reactor buildings.

The utility also said a problem with a device for moving control rods in the reactor was discovered last November. It said the defect has remained unsolved, because the device’s maker in Ibaraki Prefecture was affected by the March 11th disaster.

The power company said it would be difficult to gain local understanding for starting the commercial operation of the new reactor without solving these problems.

It gave no timetable for the start of the operation, citing a lack of a work schedule.


Oxygen cylinder bursts near No. 4 reactor

An oxygen cylinder has burst at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. But the plant operator says the blast caused no damage to the plant’s facilities, and no injuries.

At around 2:30 PM on Tuesday, workers reported hearing a loud noise like that of an explosion at the south side of the plant’s No. 4 reactor.

The Tokyo Electric Power Company says unmanned heavy machinery removing debris at the site damaged the cylinder, causing it to burst.



Laaska News.