From reactor’s core, cooling systems, used fuel cooling ponds, discharge pipelines... a nuclear site does have a few submerged environments to consider. Some of which do require regular inspection, to monitor maintenance regime or ascertain decommissioning strategy.
Although some of these environments might require radiation resistant technologies, off-the-shelf products do have the potential to accommodate specific challenges that would readily benefit from the turn-key and low maintenance approach that these technologies could offer.
More and more robotic systems for characterising nuclear environments are being considered for sacrificial use. It all comes down to a simple equation considering risk reduction, minimal maintenance, augmented maneuverability, potential data retrieved and finance. For reusable robots, sensors and electronics need to be heavily shielded to prevent the radiation from inducing errors in measurements or failure. Some areas of a nuclear site however do not require to go to that end.
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