Water Cooler Condenser Sea Water Cooler Condenser

The reactors shut down as designed after the earthquake. However, the tsunami disabled all diesel backup generators which operated the emergency cooling systems and pumps. Pumps were designed to circulate hot fluid from the reactor to be cooled in the wetwell, but they did not have any power. The reactor cores overheated and likely melted. Radioactivity was released into the air as fuel rods were damaged due to overheating by exposure to air as water levels fell below safe levels. As an emergency measure, operators resorted to injecting seawater into the drywell to cool the reactors, but would also ruin them for future operation. Reactors 1-3, and by some reports 4 all suffered violent hydrogen explosions March 2011 which damaged or destroyed their top levels or lower suppression level.

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