I had to laugh and cry, looking at the photographs of the huge, red and white balloon with cameras attached using duct tape. This is sad.
According to TEPCO's press release on 8/8/2012, the balloon couldn't pop out onto the operating floor (5th floor) because it was stopped by a cable on the 4th floor. The balloon did take photographs of the 4th floor.
The purpose of the survey (not fulfilled by this project) was to see what the 5th floor was like, in order to prepare for the future removal of fuel assemblies from the Spent Fuel Pool. (See my post from July 23, 2012.)
5 TEPCO employees and 14 affiliate company workers did the work, for about 35 minutes, receiving maximum 1.54 millisievert for the shortened work.
From TEPCO's Photos and Videos Library, 8/8/2012:
1. Investigation Outline
The investigation was conducted to understand the current condition of Unit 1 operating floor (5th floor) and provide inputs to the consideration of fuel removal from the spent fuel pool.
Though the following items were planned to be investigated by utilizing a balloon equipped with a camera, the balloon was unable to reach the operation floor as it interfered with a obstacle which is assumed to be a cable.
- Current conditions of the roof debris, the overhead traveling crane and the fuel handling machine
- Accessibility from the large carry-in entrance to the equipment hatch and SFP
- Dose measurement at the equipment hatch opening on the operating floor
TEPCO employees: 5
Members of cooperative companies: 14
Day and time of investigation
Wednesday, August 8
From 1:41 PM to 2:15 PM
Maximum radiation dose
1.54mSv (Planned dose: 5mSv)
Here's the balloon:
Balloon floating inside the hatch shaft (Photo taken from straight below the balloon):
4th floor of Reactor 1:
The tank-like structures are IC (Isolation Condenser). TEPCO workers went inside Reactor 1 building on October 18, 2011 to investigate them, braving the extremely high radiation: