Fukushima Unit 3 Spent Fuel Removal Work Begins
The process to remove the spent fuel from the pool at unit 3 will be a long term project but significant work begins in 2016. TEPCO’s schedule shows the work to install the cover building and platform should start around March of 2016. Once that installation work is completed, underwater small debris removal will begin around mid 2017. Actual removal of the spent fuel would not begin until early 2018.
All of this work will need to be done remotely, adding to the complexity.
The cover building is a modular system that will be installed remotely. A test run has been underway at Onahama port nearby.
What has caught the attention of tech media outlets is the set of robotic arms that will do all the work from cutting up debris to removing fuel and sealing it in casks. Toshiba has been showing off the robotic arms at their facility in Yokohama.
TEPCO has further information here http://www.tepco.co.jp/en/nu/fukushima-np/handouts/2016/images/handouts_160118_01-e.pdf
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