MOSCOW, November 10 (RIA Novosti) — Japanese nuclear plant operator TEPCO has removed another panel of the Fukushima nuclear reactor's protective cover, the Asahi Shimbun reported Monday.
Part of the dome covering the station's first power generating unit was blown off by heavy winds on October 28. The damaged panel was removed three days later.
According to the news outlet, the panel constitutes about one-third of the protective dome's overall surface. Debris remaining inside the plant since the 2011 disaster could reportedly be seen from the hole.
Since late October, TEPCO has been spraying a special liquid inside the Fukushima protective cover, which would prevent radioactive dust and debris from leaking from the dome.
The panels are to be reinstalled in November, while the dismantling of the protective dome is scheduled for March. Decommissioning of the crippled reactor is expected to take about 40 years.
The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster occurred on March 11, 2011, after a devastating tsunami triggered by a magnitude 9.0 earthquake engulfed the nuclear plant. Coolant systems of several reactors failed, resulting in multiple hydrogen-air chemical explosions. Three of the plant's six nuclear reactors melted down and leaked radiation into the atmosphere, soil and sea.
The incident is considered to be the world's worst nuclear disaster since the 1986 Chernobyl catastrophe.