Saturday, March 12, 2011

Another Japan nuclear reactor fails

Another nuclear reactor at the Fukushima No. 1 facility in Japan has lost its emergency cooling capacity, according to the Associated Press, bringing to three the number of reactors at that facility to fall prey to Friday's magnitude 8.9 earthquake and tsunami. Added to failure of three reactors at Fukushima No. 2, the count is now six overall.

So far, the only reactor that seems to pose an immediate risk of widespread danger is one of the two shut-down reactors at Fukushima No. 1, also known as Fukushima Daiichi, which was disabled by an explosion overnight that destroyed the building housing the reactor and the backup cooling system.

However, officials with Tokyo Electric Power Co., which owns the facilities about 150 miles northeast of Tokyo, reported to the International Atomic Energy Agency on Saturday that the reactor containment vessel, which houses the radioactive core, remained intact and that they were pumping seawater into the vessel to cool it.

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