Gundersen: Cracks found in reactor at NJ’s Oyster Creek nuclear plant (AUDIO)

Published: November 12th, 2012 at 12:55 am ET


Fairewinds Podcast, Nov. 11, 2012:

Starts at 11:30 in

Host Kevin Hurley: The NRC is reporting that the NRC has a cracked reactor head. […]

Nuclear Expert Arnie Gundersen, Fairewinds Energy Education: We probably won’t hear for months about how deep the crack was. […]

A company announced on the web […] “help make it one of the best outages of the season.” Well I think this is not exactly the best outage of the season and it’s likely the worst outage of season with the problems that Sandy provoked and now they’ve got cracks in the reactor.

 Listen to the broadcast here

Published: November 12th, 2012 at 12:55 am ET


Related Posts

  1. Gundersen on TV: Biggest problem I see is Oyster Creek plant near Jersey Shore — No way to cool spent fuel pool while power is out — All nuclear fuel is in pool, none in reactor (VIDEO) October 29, 2012
  2. AP: Leak at NJ’s Oyster Creek nuclear plant — Gundersen: “A larger issue than the NRC and Exelon is letting on” November 29, 2012
  3. Special Edition: Exactly what happened at Fukushima is going on at NJ nuclear plant, except now reactor is in refueling -Gundersen (AUDIO) October 31, 2012
  4. Nuclear Engineer: NJ’s Oyster Creek plant was two classification levels from a Fukushima event — People had to be brought in during Sandy to take command of emergency center… That actually happened (AUDIO) November 3, 2012
  5. Video: Roads next to New Jersey nuclear plant flooded this morning by 10:30a ET — Just ~10,000 feet from Oyster Creek October 29, 2012

27 comments to Gundersen: Cracks found in reactor at NJ’s Oyster Creek nuclear plant (AUDIO)

  • Radio VicFromOregon

    We're all going to have go out and buy more paint for all the writing on the wall.

    • @VicFromOregon
      November 12, 2012 at 2:23 am
      Absolutely. OC is of October 1969 first power. See what Non-Nuclear Futures by AB Lovins et al.1975. has to say: " Main Areas of Disagreement:…'..when catastrophic failure of steel pressure vessels has been widely considered to be "incredible" and hence has been excluded from USAEC hypothetical accidents notwithstanding numerous technical uncertainties[51] about long term radiation embrittlement,thermal shock in a LOCA,etc, it is not reassuring to hear a senior AEC official state[52] that such failure has not been considered because ' no design was available which could withstand the consequences of pressure vessel failure, so it was decided to accept the risk." Ref 51 and 52 will be given below.

      • Radio VicFromOregon


      • lam335 lam335

        If they know embrittlement WILL occur over time, and they have NO technology to prevent that, shouldn't these two facts lead to the conclusion that reactor licenses MUST NOT be extended beyond their original lifespan–let alone extended for sixty or eighty years?

        • nedlifromvermont

          Iam335 … you might think so … but we're through the lloking glass here …

          We are neck deep in a swamp of nuclear totalitarianism …. no transparancy, no truth, all lies from Gangster Crony Capitalists … now go back to watching the X Factor …

          peace …

      • aigeezer aigeezer

        "no design was available which could withstand the consequences of pressure vessel failure, so it was decided to accept the risk"

        Astonishing post, Ramaswami Kumar.

        It's like Monty Python, except all our lives are at stake.

        Terrifying stuff.

        • @ aigeezer, Nov 12 2012 at 940 am:
          When sun came up at strawberry fair,singing singing by the cups and daisies, 150 million kilometers away,it looks a beautiful design and nature does a favour to all life, why have a pressure vessel so ugly and full of threats of extinction? Be content with nature's design.
          Thanks aigeezer for expressing that terrorised feel.
          We are all part of nature.
          But it is worth bringing out that infinitely superior feel once again to show how helpless we are when we create something which requires divinity to make nukes safe!

      • weeman

        Pure dead brilliant

  • Sol Man

    There has not been preparation for what has not, could not or would not be considered. So the risk increases dramatically. The preparation is missing because of the cost involved. So now everything is at stake everywhere. The thinking that went into this type of energy production is vastly flawed, so now the problems and associated cost to remedy is nearly incalculable. We owe it to our progeny to light the way without npp's and carbon-based energy sources. Let us decide for life-enhancing thinking. Thanks for your time.

  • @ Ramaswami Kumar
    November 12, 2012 at 2:42 am
    "51. See e.g. Wechsler, M S, " The Radiation Embrittlement of Pressure Vessel Steels and the Safety of Nuclear Reactor Pressure Vessels",ORNL internal report, Mar 1970, which cites extensive UK and West German data that show large pressure vessel rates of catastrophic failure rates of approximately 2×10^-5/vessel year excluding failures whose causes are irrelevant to nuclear applications; …."
    My calculation for 400 RPVs, this rate represents for 50 years operation, 2*10^-5*400*50=0.4. But Considering Chernobyl explosion, the actual experience has been 1 in 330*34 or 1 in 10000 vessel years or 5 times as great, considering that in 1986 there were 330 RPVs in operation beginning from 1952.
    If we consider Fukushima as well for the number of RPV failures, the figure will be exceeded.
    The other reference:
    52. Discussion by Dr Peter Morris , Director of Operations Evaluation, USAEC, in IAEA Julich Symposium, 9 Feb 1974.

  • Flapdoodle Flapdoodle

    It is beginning to look like it would be a lot easier to list the ones that are NOT cracked.

  • richard richard

    Oyster Creek at 0% going by the NRC site.

    Salem 2 and Susquehanna 2 are also zero.

    Susquehanna 2 Notification Date: 11/09/2012


    'No steam relief valves opened. Pressure was controlled via turbine bypass valve operation. All safety systems operated as expected'

    • Radio VicFromOregon

      I'm not very reactor literate, but, reading the NRC report, it soounnndssss to me like the entire control system that regulates the cooling and recirculating of the reactor simply stopped working. It was identified as a substantial drop in water levels which required the scram. Two units, whatever those are, were hot enough to isolate off from the rest of the facility. They're looking into it. Not too terribly long ago this plant had some difficulties, right?

      • guezilla

        This was discussed on the general nuclear issues thread where it belongs already. Just to add though "Specifically, PPL did not ensure that complete, accurate and up-to-date maintenance and test procedures were available to perform post-modification testing on the digital ICS." in 2011 (a nasty list of shortcomings, too, with each one *invidually* rated as very low safety-significance!)

        The Level 3 and Level 2 isolations are (again) plant-specific action levels where certain valves isolate the reactor core from parts of the water circulation system. The idea is that something, somewhere is leaking so you want to prevent letting water to the leaking parts. Level 2 means they were one level away from de-facto loss of coolant accident.

        Lowest level (for some reason the report seems to use both + and – interchangeably!) reported was -52 inches. The levels are plant specific, but it's said generally there will be 16 feet over the nuclear fuel, so that would mean loss of close to one third. Loss of 52 inches would also mean over hundredfold increase in radiation above the reactor.

        One of the more scary prospects of nuclear plant operating I can imagine is reactor scram with automatic control systems offline, or worse yet, working at cross-purposes with the operator.

      • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

        "… the entire control system that regulates the cooling and recirculating of the reactor simply stopped working." Vic, you may have this one right. Could be some sort of computer glitch, or Stuxnet or another virus. They had better get to the bottom of this real quick! Lots of nukes having lots of problems just now. Curiouser and curiouser.

  • markww markww

    Listen to this

    This is the location of a NPP they are going to expand SW of Dallas Texas. This is the same area where there has been earthquakes in the 4.0 region due to fracking and underground collapse of natural spring systems.


    • Radio VicFromOregon

      markww, they're working on that "safe, dependable, clean" slogan, aren't they? Had it twice on one page just in case the reader hadn't noticed. The interesting thing is that you really had to look hard to realize they were referring to nuclear power plants.

  • Mack Mack

    "The NRC doesn't feel obligated to tell the public if they were at risk and certainly the people that run Oyster Creek are not gonna either." says Arnie

  • nedlifromvermont

    … this is so sadly pathetic, it beggars belief …

    How did this cancer causing technology insinuate itself so totally into our national fabric???

    I feel like post-war German Socialists must have felt about the rise of Hitler …. How did this happen?

    Greed, money, power corrupt. Who knew?


  • nedlifromvermont

    Science has been corrupted … All scientists now suspect of aiding and abetting child abuse and genocide …

    Some businesses should not be allowed, no matter how positive the effect on some corporate bottom line … Kiddie Porn is not legal. We all agree on this. Perverts are free to emigrate to Denmark.

    Nuclear power is in a similar class, but since the smoking gun is invisible, and Congressmen's votes can be bought, nuclear power is allowed.

    It should not be.

    Barack Obama: Come clean on nuclear power, or your legacy will be toxic and negative.

    Hope is useless against ionizing radiation. Didn't they teach you that at Harvard Law School?

    Oh, right. "Harvard is also on the take" … Take no notice of that troublesome three syllable word on the crest, "Veritas", … nobody speaks latin anymore …

    peace! …

  • weeman

    As far as I understand it is the cap that has cracks, that's like your head gasket in your car if it fails you loose cooling and engine over heats and fails, same for a reactor, why this is one of the most robust parts in a reactor cracking.
    My guess bogus parts or NRC not doing their due diligence and certifying replacement parts is not being done.
    To me this is big, prove that nuclear power plants have numerous fake parts in them then that will trigger a audit of all nuclear plants that will cost them billions and it would be another feather in our cap to close non compliment plants.
    Arnie how wide spread are these bogus parts in nuclear facilities and tell us how dangerious this is, this is a avenue we should be studying.

  • Sol Man

    The entire premise for the npp & C based energy is severely flawed. I doesn't work except as a life-limiting/destroying force.
    How much do we love our children and our responsibility of leaving to them a world where they can contentedly live their lives without the fear of radiation, voc's, and the assorted rampant chemical mix that we live in today. For all of our family's to be able to live on through many generations we must leave them a world that is life sustaining.

  • BigLoner

    Definition of SRAM….goes back to Stagg Field / U of Chicago, 1942
    Hello Richard & markww,

    O. C. Scram….is he some kind of Rapp DJ? Well not really. I looked up SCRAM & it seems it has it's origins go back to 1942. Specifically to University of Chicago, Stagg Field, first nuke reactor. They had a guy standing close with a fire axe to chop off uranium rod in case nuke reaction became uncontrollable.

    Is that what we had / have at Oyster Creek? Something uncontrollable requiring SCRAM…..Safety Control Rod Axe Man? Yikes!!!!

    And the big question is this another Siemens SCADA incident, like FukUshima>

    Definition of SCADA

    Siemens PLC vulnerability…BTW this went under the radar at US based Norton….not so w/ Russian Kaspersky….how so?

  • Aw they'll be fine, put some JB weld on it, and better yet, uprate the power outback to suck more profits before it blows.

    The nuke cartel, one of the saddest aspects of humanity.

  • islandboy9

    Hey people, remember the report on NHk about all of that fallout
    Reaching the artic and melting the entire ice sheet of Greenland within five days increasing the sea level
    July2012. They should have known this mess was coming like future storms skipping over barriers slamming in to a cluster old power plants. This will make the entire
    East coast uninhabitable or like (escape from new York) the movie!!!!!!!