Rods likely melting in Japanese reactors

Officials say that fuel rods could be melting in three troubled reactors, indicating a possible "partial meltdown"

By Associated Press
March 14, 2011 7:29PM (UTC)
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In this Oct. 3, 2008 photo, six reactors of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant stand in line intact in Okumamachi in Fukushima Prefecture (state), northeastern Japan. Reactors, from bottom left, are: Unit 4, Unit 3, Unit 2, Unit 1, Unit 5 and Unit 6, top. (AP Photo/Kyodo News) JAPAN OUT, MANDATORY CREDIT, NO LICENSING ALLOWED IN CHINA, HONG KONG, JAPAN, SOUTH KOREA AND FRANCE (AP)

Japanese officials say the nuclear fuel rods appear to be melting inside all three of the most troubled nuclear reactors.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said Monday: "Although we cannot directly check it, it's highly likely happening."

Some experts would consider that a partial meltdown of the reactor. Others, though, reserve that term for times when nuclear fuel melts through a reactor's innermost chamber but not through the outer containment shell.

Associated Press

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