A drone is being developed to survey the interior of reactor buildings at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 plant.
The unmanned aircraft will use lasers to detect and avoid obstacles in flight and will be able to land to replace its batteries in the absence of an operator.
A test flight was completed at the plant’s No. 5 reactor building, which escaped severe damage in the March 2011 nuclear disaster.
It is not known when the meter-wide hexacopter will be ready to begin inspections inside the buildings housing the No. 1 to No. 3 reactors, which suffered meltdowns, but the team behind it is confident the drone will have a role to play.
“The time will certainly come when drone technology will be of help,” said a member of the development team. Read more