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Cooler King
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TEPCO has been pouring water into the reactor vessels containing the rods since the disaster to cool them as an emergency measure. [ID:nL3E7FI0C7]
In a further step towards a cold shutdown, TEPCO is filling the containment vessel -- an outer shell of steel and concrete that houses the reactor vessel -- with water in a procedure called water entombment. It has started by increasing the amount of water being poured into the No.1 reactor.
At the same time it will work to restore the reactors' cooling system, which functions like a radiator on an automobile. TEPCO said mounting a separate cooling system externally was also a possibility.
For reactors like No.2, which is suspected of having a damaged containment vessel, TEPCO said it hopes to seal the damaged sections with cement to prevent the water being pumped in from leaking out.

The large amounts of runoff from the water TEPCO has been pumping in to prevent overheating of fuel rods and a nuclear meltdown. The operator estimates the amount of contaminated water at the Daiichi plant at around 70,000 tonnes.
It has been transferring radioactive water that has accumulated at the reactor buildings into tanks and storage areas at the plant, but the process has been progressing very slowly.
Many storage tanks on site were damaged by the tsunami and authorities earlier in April made a decision to pump contaminated water with lower levels of radiation back into the ocean to secure storage space.
That has since stopped but could resume if they run out of storage space again.
In the meantime, radiation continues to seep out of TEPCO's nuclear complex into the sea and into the air, although at far lower levels than at the peak of the crisis in mid-March.
Q+A-What's going on at Japan's damaged nuclear power plant? | Reuters

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