(UPDATE 7/12/2012: TEPCO released the photographs and the video taken by Survey Runner. See my latest post.)
On the second job since its debut in June surveying the Reactor 2 Torus Room, the robot Survey Runner became inoperable inside the Reactor 3 Torus Room. TEPCO says the radiation levels inside the Torus Room are just too high to retrieve the robot. The maximum radiation recorded by the robot before it became inoperable was 360 millisieverts/hour.
The robot was tethered. TEPCO does not have the footage of the mission available.
(For the details of what the robot and its human co-workers had hoped to achieve, see my previous post.)
From Jiji Tsushin (7/11/2012):
TEPCO announced on July 11 that the robot became inoperable after it was sent to the Reactor 3 building basement at FUkushima I Nuclear Power Plant to measure radiation levels and take the video. The company said it would be difficult to retrieve the robot for the moment because of the high radiation levels.
According to TEPCO, the work using the robot was done from 11AM to 3PM on July 11. The workers operated the robot that went inside the Torus Room that houses the Suppression Chamber (which is part of the Containment Vessel) to survey. The highest radiation level recorded [inside the Torus Room] was 360 millisieverts/hour.
The robot was tethered, but it became inoperable in the middle of the work. TEPCO said, "We don't know the cause yet, but it is possible that the cable got damaged." The robot was fitted with the recording equipment to record the sound of running water, but the equipment cannot be retrieved for the moment, either.
Quince 1 is still stranded in the Reactor 2 building, "for the moment", in much lower radiation, relatively speaking (10 millisieverts/hour where it sits).
I do hope TEPCO will release whatever footage they have, as well as the detailed information of what they did find. If anything, the new TEPCO under the control of the national government is releasing less information, not more. When they do release, they do so without detailed enough explanation on what they were doing.
Case in point is the set of photos of the upper floors (operational floors) of Reactor 3 that the company released also on July 11. It is just photographs of the mangled upper floors, with no explanation when it was taken and how it was taken. I suppose everyone is expected to tune in to their press conference to find more (if there's more). From the looks of the photos, they seem to have been taken from the boom of the crane they use to take air samples above the reactors at Fukushima. The air sampling at Reactor 3 was done on July 5, 2012, and the result of the nuclide analysis was released on July 10.