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30 January, 2020

ALPS Achieves Treatment Volume of One Million Tons in Less than Seven Years

On the evening of January 24, the total volume of contaminated water treated by the Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs) surpassed the milestone of one million tons. ALPS is a product of Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation (Toshiba ESS).

ALPS is used to treat wastewater that has first gone through a reverse-osmosis process to remove cesium and is then desalinated to separate the fresh water. ALPS can then remove as many as sixty-two kinds of nuclides.

At the Fukushima Daiichi NPPs, operation of the first ALPS system began in March 2013, and additional systems were installed in September 2014. In little less than seven years from the start of the operation of the first one, they have treated a combined total of one million tons of contaminated water.

Goro Yanase, vice president and chief nuclear officer (CNO) of Toshiba ESS’s Power Systems Div., released a comment after the achievement, stressing that the ability to treat one million tons of contaminated water means that the company’s technology has consistently contributed to dealing with the contaminated water at the Fukushima Daiichi NPPs.

The cesium is first removed from the contaminated water—reactor-cooling water and ground water flowing in the buildings—using Toshiba ESS’s Cesium Adsorption Instruments (SARRY II), from which the freshwater component for further reactor cooling is separated. The remaining wastewater from the reverse-osmosis process is then treated by ALPS.

No other large-scale system in the world can remove as many as sixty-two kinds of nuclides (but not tritium). Based on a design concept from the American firm Energy Solutions Inc. (now part of Atkins), Toshiba ESS was responsible for its detailed design, production and installation. The maximum treatment capability per day for the first and each of the subsequent systems is 750 tons.

Since their delivery, Toshiba ESS has continuously provided support for their operation, and has been engaged in making improvements and conducting replacement work, contributing to the high operating rates.

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