– TEPCO forced to review reactor 4 cooling plan (NHK, June 12, 2011):
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has been forced to reconsider its plan to cool the spent fuel storage pool of the No.4 reactor.
Water injection from a special vehicle has not been intense enough to cool the water in the pool, allowing the temperature to remain at more than 80 degrees Celsius.
Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, aims to install a circulatory cooling system that will pump water out of the pool and return it there as coolant. The utility originally hoped to put the system in place next month.
On Friday, workers entered the 4th floor of the No.4 reactor building where the pool is located for the first time since the nuclear disaster took place.
They found a large hole in a wall created by the March 15th explosion. They also discovered that a nearby pipe necessary for the cooling system had been mangled.
TEPCO says the repair team found it hard to work near the pool as equipment had been destroyed and debris was scattered on the floor.
Fixing the damaged pipe is expected to be extremely difficult. In addition, it remains unclear if there is another pipe that can be used for the cooling system.