US gov’t concerned about solar storms impacting nuclear plants — Core damage at multiple sites discussed — Carrington-like event?

Published: March 16th, 2013 at 4:26 pm ET
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Source: Federal Register — Vol. 77, No. 243
Date: December 18, 2012
h/t Anonymous tip

Page 74790

The NRC agrees with the comment that the long-term grid collapse scenario postulated by the petitioner would necessitate a coordinated response by various government agencies. [...]

The NRC is currently coordinating with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to ensure a common understanding of the technical phenomena associated with solar storms. [...]

The NRC’s initial evaluation of available information indicates that the likelihood of an extreme solar storm (similar to the 1859 Carrington event 1) is plausible with a frequency in the range of once in 153 to once in 500 years. The probability of the petitioner’s postulated catastrophic grid failure, given a Carrington-like event, is not known with certainty. However, based on the NRC’s review of the existing data, the NRC believes that there is insufficient information for the NRC to conclude that the overall frequency of a series of events potentially leading to core damage at multiple nuclear sites is acceptably low such that no regulatory action is needed. Thus, the NRC concludes that the petitioner’s scenario is sufficiently credible to require consideration of emergency planning and response capabilities under such circumstances. Accordingly, the NRC intends to further evaluate the petitioner’s concerns in the NRC rulemaking process. [...]

Full document here

A Carrington-like event once every 153-500 years? Note it occurred in 1859, 153 years ago.

See also: Solar storms threaten nuke plants: Electric power outages could last "for years or even decades" -- Risk significantly outweighs that of major earthquakes

Published: March 16th, 2013 at 4:26 pm ET
By
Email Article Email Article
23 comments

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23 comments to US gov’t concerned about solar storms impacting nuclear plants — Core damage at multiple sites discussed — Carrington-like event?

  • weeman

    When you are playing with something that is as dangerious as a nuclear reactor, yes you must prepare for all events of probability, yes playing you neither full understand or control.
    Go check your bank accounts the money should be deposited already or are you on march break?


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  • Yep, i been promoting the Carrington event idea for quite a while.

    As a race, we would sure look stupid with 400 nuke plants melting down.

    http://nukeprofessional.blogspot.com/p/carrington-event-and-astronomy.html


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    • AFTERSHOCK AFTERSHOCK

      yes you have, stock. Hat's off to you dude…


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      • Thanks Aftershock, the risks remain until all the plants are shut down and all the spent fuel is dry casked.

        However, if only a few plants melt down, say 6, it wont be a world ending event. But at 12 melting down, I think we are toast.


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        • redwing redwing

          Don't be so sure. Even if it is only a few plants in the beginning, the resulting deaths would create a panic and make it very difficult for those tasked with operating the remaining plants, esp. if they too (or their loved ones) are becoming sick.

          Look at how they're unable to do the right thing even under the best of conditions, with unlimited funding and operating under the aegis of "national security". Now imagine a world where the poisoning is routine and cancer commonplace…


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  • harengus_acidophilus

    > … to ensure a common understanding
    > of the technical phenomena associated with solar storms.

    "To set a language regulation."

    > available information indicates that the likelihood
    > of an extreme solar storm (…) is plausible …

    We have to expect it.

    > … with a frequency in the range of once in 153

    [since the last]

    > to once in 500 years.
    > The probability (…) is not known with certainty.

    "We don't know, but it's all safe."

    > (…) the NRC concludes that the petitioner’s scenario
    > is sufficiently credible to require consideration
    > of emergency planning (…)

    "We don't want to think about it."

    The smartest naked apes on earth …

    h.


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  • domjox domjox

    UH.. turn them off. Turn them all off. For those of you who would like context. Nuclear Reactors and OMG the SFP's.


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  • bluerthanblu bluerthanblu

    The first paragraph about 'a coordinated response from various agencies necessitated by a grid collapse' (assuming several nuclear plants to be in danger of meltdown), brings to mind 'Order more hollow-points, QUICK!' So much easier to figure out how to defend the agencies, instead of agree on how to prevent meltdowns caused by natural disasters, in the first place. NO NUKES!


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  • BeniJax

    Please forgive me for being so naive, but exactly why is it that NPPs cannot be wired to provide themselves with their own electricity during an unusual event?


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    • VanneV anne

      NPPs are built to provide plutonium for weapons, not electricity.


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    • VanneV anne

      "Did you know that a huge solar super storm is powerful enough to fry all electric circuits, fry all transformers, and burn/short circuit all electric power grids WORLDWIDE?"
      http://agreenroad.blogspot.com/2012/03/super-solar-storm-predicted-to-hit-2013.html


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    • PavewayIII PavewayIII

      They are designed to provide their own power if all off-site power is lost, BeniJax. They have smaller turbine-driven generators for that purpose. They have huge emergency diesel generators as an alternative. They also have banks of emergency batteries that they can use for a few hours.

      The problem isn't that engineers never thought of a loss of off-site power. The problem is that the utilities operating nuclear plants are cheapskates when it comes to safety. They demand cheaper designs, skimp on the way they're implemented, and then try to save even more costs later on by under-staffing plants and relying on contract labor to do the bare minimum of maintenance and upkeep. They constantly raise rates, but the only thing that seems to improve is the multi-million dollar management bonus packages.

      A large solar CME would have an effect something like an EMP bomb – it can fry out the transmission lines and transformers supplying offsite power to a nuclear plant. It also might fry out a lot of the backup power equipment in a nuclear plant itself. Even if the plants emergency power and control systems survive, the diesel generators would run out of fuel in a week or two. The plant wouldn't be able to get fuel or any spare parts for weeks even if they had communications.


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  • irhologram

    That's just it. Would there BE any communications (some say 6+months to rebuild the grid) or would the only communication be with a hollow point bullet? . No way to transmit power to cell towers…no wires to receive satellite info. But military communication would work and I suppose underground cable would work…up to the point it connected to reach the instrument you want to use. So what recourse WOULD there be fo maintain order when gas stations don't work, no food is shipped, no grocery stores are stocked, no pharmaceuticals are shipped, the water is off and your toilets don't work for 6 months? You could use solar for small appliances. Survivalists would be prepared with food, water purification and bullets and groups would band together to protect their stores from the hungry. Studies show cannibalism within the second week. The way the globalists think, they're "playing" this like a bet, like a game. If the grid goes out, it's all going to he'll anyway, so shoot to kill, and the least of our worries is radiation…that's IF we survive. And they think: if it doesn't happen in our lifetimes we won the bet. It's just more nihilism, that I have come to believe, has invaded the spiritual, moral, and cultural lives of the vast majority…even among thinking people….


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    • We Not They Finally

      in such a disastrous situation as either a carrington like event where we lose the grid for along time or a pole shift that would devastate earth or A bird flu outcome with a weaponized flu or a nuclear war or any of these events. Man would essentially become
      a pathetic victim of a horrible fate…if we cared more alot more about the world we live in and less for Greed on drugs..We would have a much better chance.Now the comment by the astro physicist who said man is definitely alone in this universe if any other Beings got to our state ..They would surely destroy themselves…


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    • PavewayIII PavewayIII

      "…Studies show cannibalism within the second week…"

      Studies? Do you mean there was more than ONE?


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  • weeman

    For the price of a b2 bomber, we can resolve this dilemma, what are you waiting for a carrying ton event, bam sticks .


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  • natano natano

    Some one like me needs to start a movement to get nuke plants to run on their own power so when not if the grid shuts down, we don't have to deal with 104 Fukushimas. It is absolutely insane that the design of these plants don't have a self powered option built in to them. It's like engineered suicide. It's so dumb that these rely on outside power that i can't even get my mind around it and i'm not that smart. Unfortunately, that's why i'm too busy trying to survive to start this self powered movement. I will however, drop everything i'm doing if someone wants to pay me to get this done. The planet can't survive without it.


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