It would be nice for Japan to get the mess cleaned up and move on, but since the Fukushima nuclear plant is still highly toxic with radioactive materials, even six years after the reactor meltdown, humans can't clean up the area. They can't get close enough to survey what needs to be dealt with before the toxic land can be cleaned up.
Robots were invented to do the survey job, but even they can't handle the radiation long enough to get the needed surveying info. Yup, even the robots are dying. Apparently, better bots are required, but each one takes a few years to build.
Even one sievert, the unit for measuring radiation, can cause nausea and sickness in humans. Five sieverts will kill people, at least 50% exposed to that level within a month's time, while 10 sieverts of radiation will be deadly within a week.
The highest level so far that robots can withstand is 73 sieverts. The big problem is that the radiation levels remain at the Fukushima reactors that need inspecting and cleaning at 530 sieverts. Uh, yeah, so science isn't even close yet with the required robotics.
Some of the robots look downright odd, yet still couldn't handle the crazy radiation levels in order to check out the Fukushima nuclear site with their cameras. Mitsubishi's robot design kinda looks like it could be a long lost relation of the Energizer Bunny. But all the robots designed, whether from Mitsubishi, Hitachi or other Japanese tech giants, only lasted up to three hours before the radiation fried their wiring and they were toast.
Toshiba's robot is one of the latest created to handle the needed surveying before clean up at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. It's called the "scorpion" but we swear it's really an upside down stapler.
Even the scorpion sting operation to withstand the radiation to get enough photos at Fukushima didn't work. This robot actually conked out five times sooner than its creators thought it would. So far, at least 100 robots created for the Fukushima disaster have died.
Obviously, more advanced robots are needed to withstand the incredibly high radiation levels at the Fukushima nuclear plant. Hopefully though, the robots won't be made to look human, or the death of them is likely to be actually felt by us. For instance, it's so easy to imagine punching a time clock along with a co-worker who looks like this guy that we may forget he's a not human, but a robot.
Physical looks for robots aside, can you imagine if the robots sent in to take photos of nuclear disasters actually spoke? That would probably humanize them so much that we couldn't bear to send them into such a dangerous place.
The Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) is responsible for the nuclear clean up at Fukushima. The mess has cost Japan billions of dollars, yet the robotic efforts have to be successful before the actual clean up and they've all failed. Tepco has a 2021 deadline for the clean up, but are the toxic remains leaking and causing more damage to the water and soil as they wait for the robots to work?
Although these flowers found growing near the Fukushima nuclear plant look like something out of a Salvador Dali painting, this kind of mutant creation in real life isn't good. The toxic remains need to be cleared up, yet the same solution of robots that don't last keeps being applied to the problems at Fukushima.