Report: M7.3 quake caused reaction inside Unit 1 at Fukushima Daiichi — Indications are that something corium related is going on

Published: December 8th, 2012 at 5:44 pm ET


Title: Unit 1; Post Quake Reaction & Torus Oddity Indicate Larger Problem
Source: SimplyInfo
Date: December 8th, 2012

We have reported extensively about a phenomenon going on inside unit 1 since the accident. Whenever there is a strong quake, the radiation in the Drywell B sensor goes up considerably, pressure and other readings tend to also fluctuate in unison. After the initial meltdowns these reactions were quite intense. Now 1 year and 9 months into the disaster we still see this same activity.

The recent 7.3 quake at Fukushima caused this same reaction.

[…] the reactions post quake and the ongoing hydrogen issue in the torus indicate something corium related going on in the torus.

[…] it appears hydrogen may have been increasing inside the torus after the previous purge effort, indicating the possibility of some sort of ongoing reaction in the torus.

This ongoing hydrogen reaction in the torus along with continuing to see post quake activity in the same area of the reactor indicate a continued event in the torus that can be picked up by the Drywell B sensor.

See also: [intlink id=”concern-about-gas-reaching-explosive-levels-in-fukushima-unit-1-hydrogen-and-krypton-85-levels-have-been-changing-since-april” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: December 8th, 2012 at 5:44 pm ET


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  3. Gov’t Report: Criticality suspected to have occurred in Fukushima fuel pool — Nuclear chain reaction after massive explosion at Unit 3 compressed fuel together? Concerned about ‘substantial damage’ to fuel (VIDEO) July 4, 2014
  4. Japan Times: Fukushima workers were concerned pressure was escaping from cracks caused by 3/11 quake — Tepco refuses to investigate inside Reactor 1 for quake damage July 27, 2012
  5. “Impossible” that bulk of melted fuel is in Unit 1 containment — Charred vessel could indicate explosive event inside October 15, 2012

63 comments to Report: M7.3 quake caused reaction inside Unit 1 at Fukushima Daiichi — Indications are that something corium related is going on

  • lam335 lam335

    re: "ongoing hydrogen reaction"

    So is this something that could still explode?

    • Centaur Centaur

      "The conclusion on the radiation Drywell B spikes at unit 1 are that corium forms a crust as it cools. Our conclusion is something that has not been covered by any known analysis for post core meltdown accidents. Significant earthquakes or major after shocks cause the crust formed over the corium to break open and release radiation which were then sensed by the radiation monitors." (from the link)

      So… if you follow this or a similar conclusion: No.

    • Sickputer

      "So is this something that could still explode?"

      SP: Not likely… Remember the new roof and walls are Pee Wee's polyester cloth. Kinda like screen doors on a nuclear submarine. Doesn't stop a single damn deadly vapor (the negative) but the likelihood of hydrogen exploding in the main Unit 1 containment "building" (make that "tent") is slim. Supposedly they have "filters" on the tent top, but that is certainly not true. They were barely able to lift in by crane and bolt together the tent panels with an occasional kamikaze helping on roof sections. A SARRY-type radioactive filter in the roof is unlikely. Show me the sludge. When hydrogen rises they inject more boric acid and open a top tent flap.

      Everything flows merrily out the flimsy roof… We saw steady flow of radioactive vapors for over a year on the top right corner of the roof (first main camera view). Too bad we still don'g have that camera view. But Brother gets to see it. Hope it scares the hell out of him.



  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Heart of the Rose
    December 8, 2012 at 9:31 am
    It's the angle..I'm sure the remains of the SFP's in 1 and jiggled but we can not see it..
    And the CSFP.

    The coriums…umm..and where are they again..?

  • eatliesndie eatliesndie

    More atmospheric releases. Everyone should hold their breath for the next couple of weeks 'till it settles down a little. Oh, and don't forget to stay out of the rain.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Quakes causing nuclear reactions at daiichi doesn't sound good.

    • moonshellblue moonshellblue

      They have been fissioning off and on and the corium is just creeping underneath I just wonder what is underneath is bedrock or lava rock or both. I guess it really doesn't matter as I don't see how they can stop this runaway nuclear train. NO NUKES

      • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

        It does matter what is underneath. It is landfill and porous sedimentary rock — no bedrock. The corium is already far down and contaminating groundwater and the ocean. There is nothing to contain it.

        I wonder if there is any spent fuel in spent fuel pool # 4. And we've seen no pictures of the common spent fuel pool (?since March 2011) and no pictures of units# 5 and 6. Only horrible pictures of Fuku Daini and nothing since March or April 2011. The same for all the 15 nuclear facilities at Tokai Mura. And the earthquakes are undoubtedly affecting Oganawa NPP, Higasidori NPP, and Rokkasho nuclear reprocessing plant.

        • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

          Why is Kissinger's think tank insisting that Japan restart its nuclear facilities? Why is Obama's highest adviser David Axelrod who worked for Exelon? Why do the elite insist on nuclear power? It is obvious that they elite inherit their power by birth and not by talent or brains. Money blinds them to their imminent death from radiation and other toxicities. And without any other people alive in the world, their wealth will be meaningless before their painful deaths from radiation.

          • sunpower

            Anne, I appreciate your many insightful posts. It is amazing to see the talent here at Enenews assembled on the 'nukular' issue hanging over our heads like a Sword of Damocles.
            At the risk of getting censored here again, in response to your questions, I will provide a few clues about Kissinger and Axelrod. To understand this, a person would have to know how Obama was selected decades ago for his current stage role supporting nuclear power, WMD and depleted uranium warfare around the world (DU). They would have to know which two countries collaborated on introducing DU in combat in 1973. When Barry was chosen it was his suitable background (of which the records are scrubbed) to carry this group's water that won him endorsement and the assignment of Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod as minders. This group's nuclear fission project began with Einstein, Tzeilard, Weizman, Bohr, Teller, Oppenheimer, Cohen, Sachs, Strauss, et al. Now here is a clue. If you can name the one connecting thread that connects Kissinger to the all of the above persons named, you will be able to answer the question in full.

        • gladys a milyon gladys a milyon

          Do you have a blog or website that contains all your research ? Ive seen some of your older posts in the archive. They are packed with links and info .

          • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

            No, I don't. I just post here and those who have separate website are welcome to any of the links I post.

            • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

              They are also welcome to any commentary I post. I have copyrights in the field of medieval literature, and am old, and don't need any more copyrights. I'm just trying to keep my family alive, including the worldwide family.

              • andagi andagi

                Dear Anne,
                Sincerest thanks for the countless hours of dedicated research you've done since the beginning and are doing still. It's unbelievable that this catastrophe continues without media updates, international pressure on Japan and direct international intervention for the sake of the planet and humanity.
                I am always receptive to your comments and links. You are truly amazing. Please keep posting. You have made such a great difference in my life and I believe new readers/posters appreciate you too, very much. They would be wise to take the time to go to the beginning (3/11) and see first hand all you've contributed to our wonderful ENENews!!!
                Take good care!

  • razzz razzz

    Just by the sheer fact TEPCO is injecting nitrogen or some cases more nitrogen, it is to prevent any build up of hydrogen to explosive levels. I think Units 2&3 never stopped nitrogen injections.

    The amounts of radiation present alone can split off (hydrolyze) hydrogen from any water nearby and be a concern for hydrogen buildup.

    Maybe you had corium at TMI, a mixture of fuel and rods that stayed inside the reactor vessel but here you have radioactive blobs with a mix of reinforced concrete, stainless steel, rods, wiring, graphite and whatever else mixed in, traveling to unknown areas.

  • ForwardAssist ForwardAssist

    I don't think mankind will ever know what happened to the coriums before the coriums or the SPF's render us extinct. At the rate Japan is experiencing quakes it's only a matter of time until the scat his the fan.

  • patb2009

    well the good thing is it means some of the corium is in Rac 1.

    Given how much has come out, its hard to get crazy about what's coming out now.

    I worry abou tthe SFPs.

    • moonshellblue moonshellblue

      I think the corium splattered. It's hard to wrap your head around how massive the corium is, I mean we're talking what, 10 tons or more, and thats just for one reactor and there are three. Wow it just makes my head spin. All that weight no wonder the sight is sinking.

      • moonshellblue moonshellblue

        And that's no counting the massive amounts of water and all the heavy machinery above,etc, and then the storage for the contaminated water which they are running out of room to store. I'm not sure why they keep dousing these empty reactor buildings unless they really think it is cooling the corium which they claim they can't locate. I grow very weary and may have to head the way of Whoopie and Xrdfox and countless others.

      • ForwardAssist ForwardAssist

        Actually, as far as I can tell Fukushima's reactors had close to 90 tons of Uranium in each core.

        • moonshellblue moonshellblue

          ForwardAssist, thanks i knew it was massive but wow not that's a lot of weight so 270 tons of melted core it's difficult for me to imagine what that is doing geologically the implications are staggering. I think perhaps it is contributing to some of the aftershocks as locals stated that some of the quakes felt like they came from underground and did not feel life the usual quake now this was a while ago but still things that make ya go hmmm.

          • andagi andagi

            Dear moonshellblue,
            'My inconceivable meter keeps needing recalibrating' too! All we can do is guard our own and our families/loved one's health, be proactive as we can, and preserve our sanity throughout this unbelievable event.
            I believe that ENENews is generating change worldwide, 24/7 and you're such an important part of this! Please keep posting, for the sake of all those who read and share ENENews! We appreciate and care about you!

  • Arizonan Arizonan

    Where are the coriums? This is the question of the century.

    • richard richard

      which may turn into the question of the eternity.

    • many moons

      My guess is…it's everywhere!
      In the sea, under the buildings, in the air, on the ground all around the area…and it's on the move.

    • moonshellblue moonshellblue

      Let's see one core weighs about 10 tons or more so I don't think they got very far but who knows just where they flowed. I picture really heavy lava but I certainly have no clue but do know that every time the earth shakes they seem to crack open and whether fissioning is occurring every time I don't know but usually you can tell by viewing the live cam as pitch black smoke spews from cracks around the reactor buildings usually around reactor one.

      • moonshellblue moonshellblue

        Also concerning Reactor one it sounds like the corium splattered and some is in the torus hence the high readings when it is disturbed by an earthquake or robot, so it seems.

    • CaptD CaptD

      A nuclear engineer that is an known expert, said in a talk recently that no corium's have escaped their containment in Japan, which was called un-factual by some one in the audience, which I thought was very generous reply…

      The same expert said that TEPCO was the only utility in Japan, something that was easy to disprove with a quick Google search that even contained a map of all the nuclear reactors in Japan and what Company owns them…

  • dosdos dosdos

    I doubted the "no effect felt from the earthquake at Daiichi" PR release. I also doubt that this is the entirety of the situation. Again, remember TEPCO's slight of PR habits, point at the lesser evils in hope the greater ones don't become public knowledge.

    • Dosdos

      Today's WSJ article made a rather interesting reference to the Onagawa plant: "Tohoku Electric Power said the three reactors at its Onagawa plant appear to have suffered no damage" (WSJ Dec 8-9 p. A11)

      Why mention the Onagawa plant at all?

      I linked the press coverage of the problems at Onagawa at my blog and I bet Anne could provide us even more details.

      Something may possibly have happened at that plant.

      And we know from Fukushima Diary that Daini had an accidental release…

      I keep remembering what "The Blue Light" had to say about the risks if the releases continue across time

      He is, I believe, a physicist…

  • please may i have a link for your estimation of tonnage of fuel per reactor? be as specific as you can — please — i have been needing good links for such assertions.

    • behappy1

      Hey girl
      Razzz pretty much answered your ? but I also seen this

      AG: Right. And then each reactor II, reactor I, reactor III, all have 500-600 bundles, so there is, if you do the math, there is 600 tons of material in each of those reactors. There is a huge amount of nuclear waste. There is 40 years of nuclear waste on that site. Plus what is already in the dry cask storage. They have a dry cask facility on site too. And that survived the tsunami and the earthquake just fine. So the goal here is to get it all into dry cask over the next 10 years.

      HC: Well I have done the math and it seems like there is 8,800 tons of spent fuel at the site or maybe round it up to 10,000 tons of spent fuel at just that site at the Fukushima Daiichi reactor complex.

  • kez

    **Our conclusion is something that has not been covered by any known analysis for post core meltdown accidents.**

    Those words, pulled at out of the main article and highlighted again by Centaur, just make my stomach turn over.

    The final frontier … Japan really needs to call for backup.

    This so needs big brains; not politics.

    • andagi andagi

      Dear Kez,
      'The final frontier … Japan really needs to call for backup.
      This so needs big brains; not politics.'

  • razzz razzz

    When they talk about fuel amounts, sometimes they are referring to the weight of the fuel pellets by themselves, then sometimes they quote the weight of fuel plus rods the pellets are stacked in or sometimes they include the fuel plus rods plus the assemblies that hold the rods.

    Unit 1 was the first reactor built and is a bit smaller. 2,3&4 were about the same size, 5&6 a little larger.

    Roughly about 100 tons of fuel (not 10) in each of the three blown reactors, Unit 4 had all its fuel in the spent fuel pool, 1,535 fuel rods, or 460 tons of nuclear fuel in the pool.

    Once the fuel melted encompassing anything around them, the size of the blobs' weight grew with more radioactive material to deal with now.

    Then there is the common storage spent fuel pool at ground level and the air cooled long term storage on site. On site because they have nowhere else to send it for storage just like all the other 52 nuclear sites in Japan store spent fuel on site. Might as well include the rest of world's nuclear generating sites for that matter…"As of August 2012, 30 countries worldwide are operating 435 nuclear reactors for electricity generation and 66 new nuclear plants are under construction in 14 countries." From the so proud NEI…

  • razzz razzz

    "…Ambassador Murata informed us that the total numbers of the spent fuel rods at the Fukushima Daiichi site excluding the rods in the pressure vessel is 11,421 (396+615+566+1,535+994+940+6375)…" From…

    Notice the Ambassador is only talking about the spent fuel pools and not the fuel in the reactors themselves, neither is mention the air cooled spent fuel amounts. Parenthetically is Units 1,2,3,4,5&6 and common pool fuel storage.

    • behappy1

      They are crazy to think they can "clean" this place up.

      Check out the tepcam, its raining so the sparkle show is on

      • I see the sparkle show also.

        What phenomena explain the sparkles?

        How does the precipitation produce these effects when interacting with radiation?

  • razzz razzz

    Here they talk about tonnage in the spent fuel pools and the dry cask\air cooled storage. Not to be confused with a fuel rod count because they are talking fuel tonnage.

    "…The spent fuel pools are of significant concern, Marvin Resnikoff, a radioactive waste management consultant, said in a Wednesday press briefing organized by the nonprofit organization Physicians for Social Responsibility. Resnikoff noted that the pools at each reactor are thought to have contained the following amounts of spent fuel, according to The Mainichi Daily News:

    • Reactor No. 1: 50 tons of nuclear fuel
    • Reactor No. 2: 81 tons
    • Reactor No. 3: 88 tons
    • Reactor No. 4: 135 tons
    • Reactor No. 5: 142 tons
    • Reactor No. 6: 151 tons
    • Also, a separate ground-level fuel pool contains 1,097 tons of fuel; and some 70 tons of nuclear materials are kept on the grounds in dry storage.

    The reactor cores themselves contain less than 100 tons of fuel, Resnikoff noted…" From…


  • razzz razzz

    So to answer the question of how much nuclear fuel was involved in Untits 1,2 & 3 reactor cores, based on the updated totals at the All Things Nuclear site, 69+94+94 tons of fuel is gone missing.

    • behappy1

      Hey razzz, maybe you know
      but how can that much fuel go undetected

      Dont you think they know exactly where its at?

      • razzz razzz


        I have no idea where the melted fuel is. After a quake or some other agitation, any heat being release should be able to be picked up with sensors and spotted either from satellites or some other form of flyover. Even analyzing the gases and elements venting from the blobs would tell what condition and environment it is in. I don't think they would tell us even if they knew what was going on below ground level.

        Remember after the recent quake, pressures rise, venting occurs but everything is reported as officially being fine like nothing ever happened.

        They have a name for everything. Melted fuel and rods is called corium (molten core) also called fuel containing material (FCM) or lava-like fuel containing material (LFCM) which is a lava-like molten mixture of portions of nuclear reactor core or fuel containing mass (FCM) where mass would included any type of materials.

        You can read about meltdowns, melted core ejection from a reactor pressure vessel like a bad case of diarrhea, outer crust forming on a cooling melted blob, concrete dissolving, off-gassing, water reactions, insane temperatures and a multitude of complications during a meltdown (death is not mentioned) here…

    • moonshellblue moonshellblue

      I don't think its missing as it is so heavy . So it is like volcanic lava but with a lot of heft. Hmm I wonder if the flow rate would be simliar to lava and all that water. Wow.

    • CaptD CaptD

      Nice image!

    • Sickputer

      Coriums are not just 100% melted fissile fuel from the reactor vessel. A corium includes all the metal, concrete, rock and assorted materials that attach to the biggest lava flows of the meltdowns. The non-fuel material is now very hot because of contamination from the inner core. So a 100-ton chunk of corium is quite possible for each of the runaway cores. The outer debris layers insulates the hotter inner core and provides a heat sink for the decaying fuel. These cores will not be safe for millennia.

      The cooling water poring across the coriums is only keeping explosions and re-fissions at bay. The Tepco workers will need to add water and boron for many decades until they determine the threat of explosions are gone.

      That is just one part of the disaster…the spent fuel ponds are as dangerous if not more because of their huge decay heat capabilities. The spent fuel rods are highly dangerous for 10,000 years. Removing them into steel and concrete casks after 2-10 years of deep water cooling is an option, but no guarantee the casks will survive 10,000 years and beyond. The nuclear industry has zero money saved and available to cask 40 years of spent fuel rods.

      The nuclear industry governments also aren't ready to step in and provide the trillions of dollars needs to cask all the spent rods currently cooling in flimsy water ponds very susceptible to earthquakes, flooding, war and terrorists,

      There will be future meltdowns, earthquakes not required.

  • Chelsea Chelsea

    It just blows my mind that it seems that Japan is doing a worse job at dealing with Daiichi now than the USSR did with Chernobyl in the 1980's. At least, that is how it seems to me.

    • WindorSolarPlease

      Hi Chelsea

      Nuclear Power and anything living is like water and oil, they don't mix.

      I don't think anyone knows how to deal with this type of catastrophic disaster. There isn't a way to fix this on going disaster.

      They have built these dangerous monsters and they have no idea how to control them.

      However, with Chernobyl it does seem they were more organized and things were done faster with precision.

      It seems like the professionals have had a hard time with this disaster, in trying to get things done. To be fair though, with this disaster they have other types of obstacles, than Chernobyl.

      Then I'm not there and I don't know any professionals in this area, so this is just my view.

    • ForwardAssist ForwardAssist

      It was a different world when Chernobyl detonated. The internet wasn't the presence it was now, particularly in countries such as Russia.

      The responders to Chernobyl barely new what radiation was, new workers were utilized in drove after drove, the average responder did not fully comprehend the consequences until they saw their comrades getting gravely ill around them.

      Also, most of the Chernobyl responders were army conscripts. They did what they were told because of the Soviet culture of obedience.

      The average level of education is much higher now, Japan is an advanced society.

      • WindorSolarPlease

        ForwardAssist, I think you're correct that many didn't realize they were doomed working on Chernobyl. They followed orders, like if they were going off to war, except radiation wins every time.

  • ForwardAssist ForwardAssist

    Correction, "Barely knew".

  • CaptD CaptD

    I've refereed to this as the "Fuky Effect" since we started seeing spikes, way back when…

    This is an entirely new "Branch of Nuclear Physics/Radioactive Chemistry"…

    The corium) has started to react to the earthquake by fissioning which will produce spikes in radiation that even TEPCO cannot ignore; Scientists the world over should be allowed to study this phenomena, because it could provide a glimpse into yet another facet of sub atomic particles…

  • weeman

    I am a well read layman and it is a no brainier to me and for the life in me I can not understand how mankind has responded to this catastrophe, it is painfully obvious their is no decommissioning of cores and if they lose control and all hell breaks loose due to one or more factors and they have to abandon the site we lose the spent fuel pools as well and this would be a extinction level event.
    Let's pretend that they manage to retrieve what is left of the spent fuel bundles and clear the site and build these cofferdams, it will still be leaching radioactive particles into the atmosphere and contaminating surrounding land and as time goes by this area will continue to enlarge and enlarge.
    I don't know the answer it completely baffles me, be wise stop fission now.
    Thanks to all the contributors to this site and the meek will inherit the earth, I don't know if we will want it.

    • Usefulbreather

      Glad I read all the way through the comments. They were all good, but yours is the most pertinent. I am with you completely. I don't understand the casual approach the world is taking toward what is a disaster that is spinning out of control at an exponential pace and we still see headlines about Lindsay Lohan's latest arrest. God help us.

  • jump-ball jump-ball

    Maximum Sun-Moon gravitational pull on the earth's plates occurs when the moon is closest to earth at lunar perigee, and when the moon is on the same side of the earth as is the sun, namely at the new moon: lunar perigee this Wed. 12/12 and the new moon the next day Thurs 12/13 bring these forces to such a maximum pull on the Pacific plate, as it subducts the Eurasian plate. Japan lies at the southern end of this subduction, where the Pacific and Eurasian plates meet to form a triangle with the southern Phillipine plate, "where the complex interactions of three tectonic plates is unpredictable and loaded with potential activity."

    In simpler terms, earth has now just entered another generic monthly 'earthquake window', which some EQ 'experts' define as being approximatly 3-4 days before and after the lunar perigee/new moon dates, in this case, from today 12/9 through 12/16, 3 days after the new moon.

    Historical statistical analysis doesn't demonstrate increased EQ activity during these windows, nor does it show diminished activity; our theory remains that if you aren't looking for the gravitional physics that characterize these perigee-new moon 'windows', you won't see trouble coming.