With the levels of radiation rising many, many times above what is considered to be “safe” for humans to work in, there must be a better way to repair and prevent further deterioration of the facility while people work around the clock to make sure that the situation doesn’t become worse, but better. iRobot has decided to deploy a couple of robots to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan, known as remote-controlled Packbots.
These Packbots had already entered one of Fukushima’s reactor buildings on Sunday morning, where authorities hope to find out more about the plant’s interior as it has gotten too dangerous for humans to go in. Each Packbot inside the facility is equipped with an attached video camera, letting Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO) to receive live interior images and temperature readings of the reactor. In the Packbot’s previous life, it was designed to defuse bombs for the US Army, so working in hazardous conditions is second nature to this robot. A video of the Packbots in action is available after the jump.
Authorities have also sent assistance for the Packbot in the form of a mechanical excavator and transporter so that debris outside the plant can be removed without endangering human lives further, while an unmanned helicopter will go around snapping aerial photos of the area. No idea on how successful the Packbots were in their mission, but godspeed and good luck to them as the world continues to come to terms with the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl in 1986.