A survey on the inside of the No. 2 reactor at the tsunami-ravaged Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant has shown a black object, which its operator says could be melted fuel, sources close to the case said.
Experts at Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), the operator of the crippled power station, are analyzing the object.
TEPCO conducted the survey on the inside of the reactor by inserting a camera attached to the tip of a pole inside on Jan. 30.
The survey shows the black object near a grating, which is used as a foothold for plant workers, just below the reactor's pressure vessel.
Following the outcome of the survey, TEPCO plans to send a remotely controlled robot into the reactor building to get a closer look at conditions, beginning in February.
At the time of the outbreak of the nuclear crisis, there were 548 fuel units inside the No. 2 reactor, according to company officials.