Japan nuclear crisis worse than Three Mile Island

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ANALYSIS Conditions at a stricken nuclear power plant in Japan have deteriorated so much that there is a growing consensus the crisis is greater than the Three Mile Island accident in 1979, and there are fears that it could get significantly worse.

Academics and nuclear experts agree that the problems at the Fukushima Daiichi reactors are grave, and the solutions being proposed are last-ditch efforts to stem what could well be remembered as one of the world's worst industrial disasters.

All six reactors at the complex have problems - be it blown-out roofs, potentially cracked containment structures, exposed fuel rods or just the risk of explosion that has been great enough to force emergency measures.

Of particular concern are a fire in a massive pool holding spent atomic fuel rods and a blast at the building housing the pool and reactor No 4. The pool is exposed to the elements unlike the reactor core which is protected in steel and concrete...

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