Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO), the utility operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant announced on Tuesday that it had found additional leaks at the No. 1 reactor. This is in addition to the previous ones discovered last December 21 and 22.
They suspect the leaks in two areas around the storage tanks that contain contaminated water because the water levels were lower upon inspection. One of the bounded areas had 12 centimeter deep water on December 20, but by the 24th it was reduced to 5 centimeters. The other area also had 12 centimeters on the 20th but by the 24th had only 1 centimeters of water. These areas are separate from the two areas that had water leaks the previous week.
The latest incident may have leaked around 225 tons of radioactive water although the areas around the concrete boundaries were not wet. A TEPCO representative suspects that the water may have already seeped into the ground. The water in that area contained radioactive Strontium-90 that were as high as 440 becquerels per liter. The current temporary limit for water to be released from the concrete boundaries is 10 becquerels of Strontium-90 per liter.
Last week, around 3.4 tons of water containing up to 1,000 becquerels per liter of radioactive materials are suspected to have leaked from the No. 2 reactor. TEPCO said they believe the weakening of the resin at the connection points of the concrete boundaries as well as several cracks in the concrete are the reasons for the leaks. They are still currently investigating the incidents further.
[ via The Mainichi ]