Denki Shimbun: Tepco to search for holes in containment vessels — Trying to determine where radiation is coming from

Published: May 17th, 2012 at 10:59 am ET


Survey launched at Fukushima I in preparation for reactor building decontamination
Denki Shimbun
May. 15, 2012

[Tepco] began on May 14 a survey required in advance of decontaminating inside the unit 1-3 reactor buildings of the Fukushima I nuclear power station. It will use a robot equipped with a gamma camera to determine the radiation sources and the condition of contamination. 

The survey will be the first step in preparing for the decommissioning of the Fukushima I reactors. It will collect information required for locating and repairing leaks in the containment vessels. […]

Published: May 17th, 2012 at 10:59 am ET


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  2. Nuclear Expert: Fukushima explosions could have actually blown holes through containment vessels (Harvard Video) August 8, 2012
  3. Japan Times: Melted fuel burned holes in Fukushima reactors — Explosions cracked containment vessels? March 8, 2013
  4. WSJ: Tepco needs to find ways to prevent new nuclear reactions — May happen if fuel not adequately cooled — “Containment vessels are largely empty of water” after leakage September 14, 2011
  5. Japan Times: Fukushima faces “insurmountable hurdle” if containment vessels are source of lethal radiation in reactor buildings March 9, 2012

35 comments to Denki Shimbun: Tepco to search for holes in containment vessels — Trying to determine where radiation is coming from

  • PhilipUpNorth philipupnorth

    Good post, Admin.
    "The survey will be the first step in preparing for the decommissioning of the Fukushima I reactors. It will collect information required for locating and repairing leaks in the containment vessels."
    "Locating…leaks". This is how TEPCO refers to scores of tons of missing molten corium. That's priceless!
    The containment vessels have been virtually empty from April of 2011 on. They are also drilling from outside to locate the coriums. Frankly, this is likely to be time better spent than finding holes in the basement floors of the buildings. What a show!

    BTW, reports isotopes in Fuku fallout in the USA indicating nuclear fires beginning April 30, 2012. Wonder if TEPCO's search has uncovered something bad. Or, is this simply a race against time?

  • I think it obvious that there are more than a 'few holes' in the plans for what to do next.

    If there even is a real plan? Other than the ones to cover up the truth and to convince people to remain calm and that that there is no immediate concern. Or just say nothing, complete silence. Other than that, I don't believe that there is a plan.

    btw – I agree with Potrblog's analysis. So, WHY are agencies that are supposed to keep us 'safe' and report this kind of information NOT responding one iota? (please refer to the prior paragraph)

    • PhilipUpNorth philipupnorth

      ChasAha: Yes, but we know TPTB and the American Government respond only to the needs to their Nuke.Corp.Gov.1%.ChamberOfCommerce.Superpak masters. As for me, I am becoming frustrated by conflicting fallout reports, pictures of clean air filters from Washington state, presented by those supposedly on our side (Come on, Arnie. Support your claims of 5 hotparticlesmper day exposure in California, or shut up.) I cannot with confidence buy any food caught or grown in the western USA/Canada/Alaska, because there are simply no source of sound data on the radiation emitting from foods from any credible source that does not have a direct monetary motive to lie to me. I am getting just a little pissed off by the failure of the US Government to protect its citizens.

  • StPaulScout StPaulScout

    In other news, senior TEPCO officials continue searching for their own asses. They will now attempt to locate said asses using both hands. The CEO stated off the record, 'I doubt using both hands will help, most of the board doesn't even know what it is they are looking for exactly….'.

  • glowfus

    a search for the missing melted fuel cores by locating the holes it flowed through and following the radiation plume. a radiation trail leading to the missing fuel similar to hanzel and gretal leaving a trail of bread crumbs on their way to grannys house but this time using radioisotopes instead.

  • Just a few years ago, if someone had presented all of this in a screenplay to the major movie producers, it would have been dismissed as not believable. Yet here we are living in it.

  • Spectrometising

    Personally i am pretty annoyed with the best minds we have available only being able to find "vibrations" and no NRC reports about the ongoing Boric acid corrosion at PWR (Pressurised Water Reactors.) and famous physicists not being able to explain how a blob of corium can remain concentrated enough to make it more than a few meters into the ground to bothered even getting phased with TEPCO deciding to look for holes.

  • Spectrometising

    I look for all the rays, as a spectrometiser and if even one is missing, red, yellow, or even blue, i know i am not seeing the light.
    It is not an explanation if it is not the whole explanation.

    This is indeed the dark ages.

    Under these circumstances, better results might come from reverting to the Tarot, or a Ouija board.

  • 3C

    Helpful hint: look under the bottom
    See? Now let's move on.

    • Sharp2197 Sharp2197

      Damn, I was just going to say that. Don't waste time looking at the top of them go straight to the basement. See that steaming pit into the ground, yeah that is the problem.

  • Spectrometising

    Perhaps TEPCO are using Jungian psychology and resorting to using symbols?

  • Spectrometising

    Holes, the dark ages, symbolic metaphors….
    Carl Jung would have a field day with it.

    • pure water

      Is not it more like Freud? Nuclear is always a play of the big boys with big toys, and sometimes fixation on the anal stage of development. As a result averybody feels f…d and deep in the sh…

  • PhilipUpNorth philipupnorth

    Spectro, TEPCO is drilling at a downward angle from the cliff face in an effort to locate coriums. What does this tell you?

    • Spectrometising

      Philipupnorth: Probably to prevent water from the wreck coming back out of the hole.
      "Same thing happened at Chernobyl…the core completely liquified and escaped the reactor vessel. It took them many months, but eventually the found the 'core'…it had oozed down beneath the vessel and combined with sand (which was surrounding the vessel) to form a highly radioactive glass. In the process, the uranium was diluted and lost it's critical mass–other than decay, it no longer had the capability of sustained fission reactions."

      • FreeRepublic? Are you kidding me?!?

        There are actual photographs of what happen to at least two of the corium flows at Fukushima, right there on lame-assed Wikipedia…

        And just so you know, even spent fuel will melt if it's deprived of cooling, just from decay heat. Come to think of it, so will reactors that are scrammed. Hence Fukushima Daiichi.

  • Spectrometising

    Finally, from an engineering perspective, you would think there is an even enough distribution of isotopes around the site to provide more or less equal readings of radiation throughout the site with respect to any holes.

    Unless liquified corium flowing through a hole can serve as a contrast.

    Perhaps they might employ some tracer dye visible under UV light.

  • PhilipUpNorth philipupnorth

    Spectro: Do you believe coriums at Fuku will be found inside the buildings, as at leadt a portion was at Chernobyl, or are the coriums under the buildings? Do you think the coriumms have stabilized, as at Chernobly, or are they still on the move? Best guess?

    • Spectrometising

      Unless the corium is like one of those lava lamps where the blob never mixes with solution it is in, the corium will/should melt into the geology and become a part of it whilst it is still hot enough to melt into it, diluting itself as it goes.

      Common sense alone tells me this also, so i really have to wonder what planet Michio Kaku is coming from with respect to his own prognosis if he seriously imagines any different, and i have understood him correctly.

      From Wikipedia:

      "According to official estimates, about 95% of the fuel in the reactor at the time of the accident (about 180 metric tons) remains inside the shelter, with a total radioactivity of nearly 18 million curies (670 PBq). The radioactive material consists of core fragments, dust, and lava-like "fuel containing materials" (FCM, also called "corium") that flowed through the wrecked reactor building before hardening into a ceramic form.

      Three different lavas are present in the basement of the reactor building: black, brown, and a porous ceramic. They are silicate glasses with inclusions of other materials within them. The porous lava is brown lava that dropped into water and thus cooled rapidly.

  • chrisk9

    Ok just give me a blank survey map and I will locate the "hot spots" for you. Any piping that contains primary coolant will be "hot". Any elbow in the piping will be hotter. Any values or pumps will be the hottest points. Dose rates will increase as you get closer to any of these points, and decrease as you get farther away. Any area with filters that process primary coolant will be unapproachable to humans. As you get closer to the drywell and torus things will get really hot.

    They could decontaminate the main walkways in the plant sometime in the future, but that is all. They will never decontaminate a majority of the plant, and certainly will never decommision anything. They are either complete idiots for believing this bull, or are doctoral candidates in bullshit.

    • ruth

      They are not idiots. They know but they do not want people to know. They talk decommission to pacify the masses. It is all a scam.


    TEPCO'S statement has already been written.

    "Nothing to see here, folks. Please move along. All is well. Any radiation is minor and extremely insignificant. All leakages are well contained. We cannot find any leakages of any kind. If there are any leakages, they are minor and extremely insignificant. As our new motto states, The current situation presents NO IMMEDIATE DANGER."

  • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

    yea, let's focus on the holes, and the geese flying north and the dancers competing for first prize, but never focus on this… oh no…. never, never never.

    No one is allowed to read this top secret stuff, NO ONE.. and that means YOU.

    How Dangerous Is 400-600 Pounds Of Plutonium Nano Particle Dust Liberated By Fukushima? Via A Green Road Blog

    Don't you even think about reading this…

  • RutherfordsGhost

    There is a type of concrete that expands as it sets. Poor it into the bottom of the vessels – then normal boronated concrete. Then fill with water.
    The Japs have no brains.

  • weeman

    Correct me if I am wrong if their is holes in vessel then I would expect that only some of the core is still in reactor vessel and the rest outside, plugging holes in vessel will have minimum affect on rad lvls.

    It took them three years at Chernobyl to find elephants foot and inside of reactor and the Russians throw all they had at it,
    tepco and Japan government are out of their league and the radiation has already penetrated their brains and they are clinically insane. Insanity runs in the nuclear family got to close to their own reactors