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Fukushima ice wall gets go ahead

Tests on a small scale ice wall at the plant have already proven the technology
Tests on a small scale ice wall at the plant have already proven the technology

JAPAN: The idea to construct an ice wall at the beleaguered Fukushima nuclear plant to stop groundwater pollution has been given the go ahead.

As first reported by the Cooling Post last August, refrigeration technology will be called upon to stop the 300 tons per day of radiation contaminated cooling water seeping into the land and sea. Most of the water is recycled but a significant amount still seeps away despite an underground barrier built to try to prevent the contaminated groundwater from reaching the sea.

After reviewing the evidence from plant operator the Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO), the Nuclear Regulation Authority has decided to give the approval for the ice wall to start building by next month.

The JY32bn (€230m) project will see 26.4m tubes being inserted into the ground at 1m intervals. Glycol at -30ºC will be circulated through the tubes to create a 2m thick, 30m deep and 1.5km long ice wall that will box in the four reactor buildings and the flow of groundwater.

Test on a 10m² area at the plant, which started last year,  have already been proven effective in stopping groundwater penetrating the wall.


Refrigeration to the rescue 16th August 2013

9148409_spingJAPAN: Refrigeration could come to the rescue of the Tsunami-hit Fukushima nuclear plant which is still spewing contaminated water into the sea more than two years after the disaster. Read more

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