Radiation levels at Fukushima, measured by drones

7 years ago by in Technology

It is the first time when a drone is used to check the levels of radiation around the Fukushima nuclear power plant in northern Japan.

The drone flew from Namie, a city that is about six kilometers away from the nuclear plant and, while being remote-controlled, it checked the radiation levels for about half of hour, giving real time information to scientists.

The drone, which was not named, can fly at a lower altitude compared to a manned aircraft, which has to fly at an altitude of at least 300 meters, the international press reports.

The drone was developed by the Japanese Atomic Energy Agency and the Japanese Space Exploration Agency (JAXA).

It can take a flight path that follows the terrain around the plant, allowing scientists to gather exact radiation figures, the aircraft’s creators said.

The science team that is conducting the project is planning several more test flights in order to have the drones completely operational by 2015.

The earthquake and tsunami that hit northeastern Japan on March 11, 2011, killed more than 15,000 people, left more than 3000 others missing and damaged the Fukushima nuclear power plant, causing the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl.