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U.S. Barge Cools Nuclear Plant in Japan

2011-03-28 04:06 AM EST Last Updated: 2011-03-28 05:19 AM EST



A U.S. Navy barge has joined the effort to cool the Fukushima nuclear plant, damaged in the recent earthquake and tsunami.


Carrying just over 850 thousand liters of fresh water, the YON-287 U.S. Navy Barge left the Yokosuka Naval Base on Saturday, to meet up with a Japan Maritime Self Defense Force support ship. 


And it's this second ship that will carry the water to northern Japan. 


There it will be used to support cooling efforts at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.


The YON-287 is one of two barges the U.S. Navy is providing to the government of Japan to bring water to the region. 


Together, the two barges will provide just under 2 million liters of fresh water to support the cooling process at the nuclear plant.


Radiation levels have soared in seawater near the Fukushima plant, according to Japanese officials. 


Engineers have been struggling to stabilize the power station ever since a massive earthquake and tsunami hit Japan two weeks ago.


There are no U.S. Navy crew members on the barge.


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