Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) has carried out training in the operation of a submersible remotely operated vehicle (ROV) that will be used to investigate the used fuel pool of unit 2 at the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. The investigation is scheduled to begin in mid-June.
The company said it plans to start removing the 587 fuel assemblies from the unit's used fuel pool between fiscal year 2024 (ending March 2025) and fiscal year 2026 (ending March 2027). "However, prior to commencing fuel removal, we must first ascertain whether or not there are any obstructions above the fuel or inside the cask pit, and we must also ascertain the condition of the skimmer surge tank," Tepco said.
Dose levels on the operating floor of unit 2 are high thereby making it difficult to access, Tepco noted. It has yet to conduct an internal investigation of the unit's used fuel pool, but it has made progress with the cleanup of equipment, etc. that remains on the operating floor and it is now possible to access the area near the storage pool. Tepco has also now deemed it possible to safely install investigation equipment.
Tepco held training sessions at the Fukushima robot test field in Minami-Soma City for eight employees between 13 and 15 May on operation of the submersible ROV. It says the design of equipment for the removal of the fuel from unit 2's storage pool will be reviewed according to the results of the investigation.