Ice Wall To Contain Fukushima Groundwater Contamination
Japanese authorities have approved the construction of an underground “ice wall” around the meltdown-plagued Fukushima nuclear power plant to keep groundwater from becoming contaminated before pouring into the Pacific.
The frozen barrier will be created by inserting a network of pipes to a depth of 100 feet, which will circulate a coolant that has a temperature of minus 40 degrees.
The designers say the resulting 1-mile frozen barricade of earth will help prevent a large volume of groundwater from flowing into the basements of the reactor buildings and mixing with highly radioactive water already accumulating inside.
About 300 tons of radioactive water from the plant are believed to be pouring into the adjacent Pacific each day.
Currently, a so-called groundwater bypass system pumps out some of the water before it reaches the reactor buildings.
The ice wall under construction will stretch for 1 mile and will surround reactors 1 to 4.