Tag Archives: Fukushima

Cold Shutdown Achieved at Fukushima Power Plant

It took 131 days to stabilize the Fukushima #1 (Daiichi) power plant, and after setting the goal in April to achieve cold shutdown by the end of this year, TEPCO finally announced that they had succeeded. This means that the water used to cool the nuclear fuel rods is below the boiling point. That means that they won’t reheat, which in turn means that radiation levels can now be kept securely at low levels, even if another damaging quake occurs. How much does this mean for the country? Some are skeptical.

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Fukushima Well on It’s Way to “Cold Shutdown”

The news from Fukushima has largely been good recently, since the temperature of the nuclear reactors at the Fukushima #1 power plant have been steadily reduced. The government has redefined cold shutdown to include the state of the power plant releasing only up to 1 millisievert per year. This is hoped to be achieved by the end of the year, and this is a very good sign. But is it too early to celebrate, or can we relax a little knowing that things are much safer than before?

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Skeptikai Notices (Aug9) – Video games, news, hacking, Japan, science

Video Games:

Robots use Kinect to understand our world – Robots can’t view the world like we do, but technology is advancing, and soon they may be able to understand it enough to convince us that they can experience it similar to us. Researchers at Cornell University’s Robot Learning Lab have manipulated the Kinect system – created essentially for entertainment purposes for Microsoft’s Xbox 360 video game console – so that the robots could image their environments in “colored 3D pointclouds.” The accompanying video shows the world as they see it. The robots can locate objects, and robotics will probably be advancing exponentially, now that we have examples of robots learning skills through reinforcement – such as the robotic arm that learned to flip pancakes after 50 trials.

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Skeptikai Notices (July25) – Japan, psychology, news

Japan

Fukushima Plant ‘Successfully Stabilized,’ 131 Days After Tsunami – Finally, plugging the reactors at the battered Fukushima Power Plant is no longer a goal. I mentioned last month that they had started implementing a promising new water system, which works by decontaminating radioactive water while cooling the reactors. Now, TEPCO may achieve a cold shutdown within six months. This is great news, but it’s still important to remember that cleanup efforts will continue for years. The damage from the tsunami seems like it went on forever. In fact, recent research has found that in places like Miyako, the tsunami reached 40.4 meters.

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