Gov’t: Fuel melted “much deeper” into concrete at Fukushima reactor than revealed — Triple the depth of original estimate — Tepco: “Impossible for us to evaluate potential impact”
Published: August 8th, 2014 at 10:02 am ET
Japan Times, Aug 6, 2014: Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Wednesday that its new estimate shows that all the fuel rods in reactor 3 at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant apparently melted down and fell onto the bottom of the containment vessel. […] According to the newestimate, all the melted fuel penetrated the pressure vessel, fell onto the bottom of the containment vessel and melted about 68 cm into the concrete. […]
Malaysian National News Agency (statutory body established by Malaysian parliament), Aug. 7, 2014: According to TEPCO’s latest analysis, nuclear fuel in the No. 3 unit reached the melting point of 2,200 degrees Celsius around 5:30 a.m. on March 13 […] it now sees the possibility that the water injection stopped around 8 p.m. the previous day. […] The melted fuel is estimated to have eroded the concrete-made reactor container by 68cm,much deeper than the 20cm estimated in November 2011, TEPCO said. But the company denied that the fuel went through the containment vessel to reach the soil.
Asahi Shimbun, Aug 7, 2014: Almost all of the nuclear fuel in the No. 3 reactor of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant melted within days of the March 11, 2011 disaster, according to a new estimate […] TEPCO originally estimated that about 60 percent of the nuclear fuel melted at the reactor. But the latest estimate released on Aug. 6 revealed that the fuel started to melt about six hours earlier than previously thought. […] TEPCO official said […] “It is still impossible for us to evaluate the potential impact (of the findings) on the decommissioning of the reactor.” […] many details of the disaster remain unknown, TEPCO is still looking into the causes of the disaster. […] TEPCO made a new estimate based on the premise that the [Unit 3] cooling mechanism stopped functioning at 8 p.m. on March 12, when the internal pressure dropped sharply. […] TEPCO said it will now consider how to remove the melted nuclear fuel from the No. 3 reactor.
See also: NHK: “This is a very severe accident” — Nuclear fuel at Reactor No. 1 may have melted through 65 cm of concrete… Only 37 cm at thinnest point (PHOTOS)