Toshiba Corp. has shown off heavy machinery it developed to clean up radioactive materials using dry ice particles.
It sprays dry ice particles by remote control to remove radioactive materials from the floor and walls inside reactor buildings.
The equipment will be tested at the Fukushima No. 2 nuclear power plant from Feb. 18.
Plans call for using it at the stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant from this summer.
The device comprises two carriages that are operated by controllers with 100 meters of cable attached. An arm on the carriage sprays dry ice particles to remove radioactive materials and a separate hose vacuums up the materials.
The equipment can operate continuously for 30 minutes.
According to Toshiba officials, development costs came to several tens of millions of yen, half of which was covered by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in the form of subsidies.
The central government has earmarked 100 billion yen ($1.1 billion) in the supplementary budget for fiscal 2012 and the initial budget for fiscal 2013 for research expenses associated with the decommissioning of nuclear reactors.
The ministry organized a demonstration of the equipment to the media on Feb. 15.
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