On March 11, 2011, the tsunami caused by the T?hoku earthquake prompted a nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in ?kuma, Fukushima. Now, for the first time, a crew has been able to capture images of melted uranium fuel present in its ruined Unit 3 reactor.
The accident caused three of the facility’s six nuclear reactors to melt down. When this occurred, their uranium fuel rods liquefied, melting through layers of steel and concrete. This made it difficult for those investigating the accident after the fact to determine where the uranium had ended up.
The rods were cooled when plant workers pumped water into the reactor buildings, but there was no way to know how far they had traveled. It took three days for four engineers to pilot a small drone known as the Mini-Manbo through the corridors of flooded buildings to find the uranium. Previous attempts to use …