Indie | Fukushima I Nuke Plant: Water Treatment System Is in Trouble

Posted on July 15, 2011

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Indie | EX-SKF | 15 July 2011 

Something is going wrong. TEPCO has started to use fresh water taken from the river to cool the reactors, because the treated water that it has been using is running low.

From Yomiuri Shinbun (10:23PM JST 7/15/2011):

東京電力は15日、福島第一原子力発電所の汚染水処理システムの不調で、原子炉に注入する処理水が不足してきたため、約2週間ぶりに外部から真水を補給したと発表した。

TEPCO announced on July 15 that the company started to use the fresh water from outside source to supplement the treated water it has been using to cool the reactors for two weeks. The contaminated water treatment system at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant is not functioning well.
外部の水を使うと汚染水の増加につながり、東電は不調の原因究明を急いでいる。

If the outside water is used, that will increase the amount of contaminated water. TEPCO is trying to identify the cause of the problem.

同システムは毎時50トンの処理能力があるが、12日までの1週間の実績は同37トン。東電は、配管の一部に空気がたまるなどした可能性があると みて、15日午前5時14分にシステムを停止させ、空気抜きなどの処置を行った。午後2時21分に再開したが、依然、同39トンにとどまっているという。

The system can process 50 tonnes of water per hour. During the one week that ended on July 12, however, the rate was 37 tonnes per hour. TEPCO stopped the system at 5:14AM on July 15 to expel the air out of the pipes and restarted the system at 2:21PM, but the operating rate still remains at 39 tonnes per hour.

その結果、汚染水を処理した真水を蓄えるタンクの水量が満タン時の35%に低下。東電は河川の水を約570トン補給し、63%に回復させた。外部の水を足せば汚染水が増える。

As the result, the amount of treated water in the storage tank has dropped to 35% of the full capacity, so TEPCO replenished the tank with 570 tonnes of river water to bring it to 63% capacity. If outside water is added, the contaminated water will increase.

Let’s see..
63 minus 35 equals 28.
570 tonnes equal 28% of the capacity.
So the tank holds 2,035 tonnes.

Hmmm, the number doesn’t match up with the information on TEPCO’s drawing, which shows the storage tank to have the capacity of 5,000 tonnes and the buffer tank that can mix river water with contaminated water if needed has only 1,000 tonnes capacity. There is no tank with 2,000 tonnes capacity in the drawing…

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