Holes in Fukushima reactors may be big

Units 1 and 2 at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant could have several holes in the containment vessel caused by meltdowns of fuel rods in the reactors, according to CNN International.

The holes may be as big as 7 to 10 cm in diameter, which could mean more leakage from the containment vessels, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) said in a report to Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency. Unit 1 may have developed a hole as big as 3 cm in diameter 18 hours after the quake, the article said. Unit 2’s containment vessel may have developed a hole as wide as 10 cm 21 hours after the quake.

The hydrogen explosion in Unit 2 may have also led to the formation of a second hole as wide as 10 cm, according to the article.

Workers recently discovered the fuel rods in units 1, 2 and 3 had partially melted down after the earthquake and tsunami hit the plant in March, causing holes in the containment vessels. TEPCO said it is sticking to its timeline of reaching cold shutdown of all six reactors in nine months.

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