NHK: Scientists to use detectors ‘deep underground’ to look for Fukushima fuel; It’s ‘believed’ to have cooled down, but no one can check — Officials: We don’t know if water is covering fuel — Expert: Water must be circulating around fuel or it will melt again (VIDEO)

Published: August 21st, 2014 at 5:00 pm ET


NHK’s ‘Nuclear Watch’, Aug. 20, 2014: Looking Inside Fukushima Daiichi… One of the biggest hurdles they’re facing is how to remove melted fuel… First they need to know the condition of the fuel. Experts believe it has cooled down and turned into debris. But engineers with TEPCO have not been able to check the actual state of the debris… detectors will be used to track the behavior of muons… in a bid to determine the status of the molten fuel… Kenichiro Okamoto: Team members face big challenges… The molten fuel inside the reactors is believed to have sunk to the bottom of the containment vessels. So scientists must place the detectors around the vessels deep underground. The job is made even more difficult as the whole area is… flooded with contaminated water…An engineer I spoke to expressed some concerns… Haruo Miyadera, a scientist with Toshiba: “Taking [detectors] to the site and assembling them in a radioactive environment will be tough. We need to do more work.” Another obstacle is the extremely high radiation being emitted by the surroundings. This creates noise that could disrupt the study… If this happens, researchers won’t be able to correctly grasp the situation inside the reactors. These are just some of the issues that the studies must address.

TEPCO officials 2 months ago:

  • Teruaki Kobayashi, Tepco official: “We cannot tell at this point if the fuel is entirely submerged or if part of it’s above the water.”
  • NHK: Officials at Tepco… don’t know whether [the water] even covers all of the nuclear fuel… Nothing is known about the condition of the melted fuel in all 3 reactors.

What happens to when the fuel is uncovered?

Dr. Gordon Edwards, court-certified nuclear expert, Crystal Kids Radio, Aug. 8, 2014 (at 49:00 in): “If you don’t remove that heat by circulating water, by flushing water through the core of the reactor, then the temperature is going to go up and up and up. It goes up so high that the fuel itself starts to melt… They have to pump about 400 tons of water… to prevent them from overheating again. They’re going to have to do this for at least 7 or 8 years, maybe longer, maybe 10 years.”

Watch NHK’s latest ‘Nuclear Watch’ segment here

Published: August 21st, 2014 at 5:00 pm ET


Related Posts

  1. Japan TV ‘News Flash’: Officials fear melted reactor fuel is now exposed at Fukushima — Tepco: We don’t know at this point if fuel is uncovered — Large drop in water level — Experts ‘struggling’ to find condition of nuclear cores, nothing is known for all 3 reactors (VIDEO) June 10, 2014
  2. Nuclear Expert: Fukushima fuel suspected to be in ground… “it’s going to melt right down into the ground” when heat isn’t removed, that’s why these are so dangerous — Physician: “3 of Fukushima’s reactors melted through containment… the crisis is clearly ongoing” (VIDEO) August 18, 2014
  3. Document shows nuclear fuel burned through bottom of containment vessel under Fukushima reactor — Official: Leakage we observed indicates melt-through by ‘shell attack’ — “This is a very big problem… fuel debris in the PCV is doing something bad” (VIDEO) July 13, 2015
  4. Video: Fukushima had “meltdown, melt-through, & melt-out within days of quake” — US Gov’t: Analysis says containment vessel fails after fuel melts through barrier — Experts: Corium may have melted out to reactor building, prepare for radiation doses over 200,000,000 microsieverts/hour March 10, 2015
  5. Japan Gov’t Expert: Nuclear fuel continued melting long after injecting sea water into Fukushima reactors — Extended release time caused ‘massive’ radioactive fallout — Reactor heat ‘surged’ when coolant was added — Officials admit just 3% of water pumped in made it to reactors (VIDEO) January 30, 2015

64 comments to NHK: Scientists to use detectors ‘deep underground’ to look for Fukushima fuel; It’s ‘believed’ to have cooled down, but no one can check — Officials: We don’t know if water is covering fuel — Expert: Water must be circulating around fuel or it will melt again (VIDEO)

  • Sol Man

    They assume that there is something to find.

    • OldFool

      Even if they find some molten core, the radiation will probably be somewhere around 90 to 1000 Grays/hour (9,000 to 100,000 Rads/hour). Nobody is going to be picking it up like a charcoal briquette with some barbecue tongs any time soon.

  • devark devark

    "Nothing is known about the condition of the melted fuel in all 3 reactors" More lies.

  • Time Is Short Time Is Short

    When you think about it, at this point it's all just a giant waste of money. The money would be better spent moving everyone into temporary housing on the Japanese West Coast, with food and comforts, and provide morphine and let them all die in peace, before the pain of the cancer hits. Assisted suicide, on a national level.

    Forcing them to live in radioactive hot zones while flushing yen down the toilet is pure Evil.

    There are only two choices people have now – worldwide – walk away from Evil or join it.

  • Nick

    "Experts think the fuel has cooled down and turned into debris…"

    "in a bid to determine the status of the molten fuel"

    Which is it? Debris or molten fuel?

    The high radiation readings in the surroundings will make the study have challenges as the experts (hip hip hooray for them!!!!) attempt to figure out just what the f**k is going on.

    When the study is complete, the global nuclear cabals will use the data to further safetitize nuclear endeavors worldwide.

    In other news….

    We are happy that Fukushima rice can go to Singapore. Watch for special discount coupons to assure the nutrituous rice does not linger on the shelves.

    • We Not They Finally

      "Experts" don't think that. They know that "melted fuel" doesn't just magically cool down into "debris," especially when it's completely out of containment. They're not confused. It's just more lies.

  • fireguyjeff fireguyjeff

    One point that seems to be missed a lot.

    The thermal energy produced by the amount of fuel that melted is
    larger than what most people can comprehend.

    The idea that the fuel has "cooled" is just stupid.
    As is the idea that the fuel has "turned in to debris".

    The quantity of water needed to keep the fuel cool is also staggering.

    Recall that the cooling towers at a NPP are there for a reason….to deal with the WASTE heat!

    And recall that all of that is happening when the reactor is running in a controlled manner.

    I am too busy right now to run the math, yet suffice it to say, just think about all of the electrical and heat energy dissipated during the controlled fission process of a Fuku PP over many years of a fuel cycle life span and then condense that energy release (i.e. very high temperature) over the span of weeks to months and the problem is more than intractable.

    • name999 name999

      fireguy, and they never had a plan, ever. And no one made this agency making these materials have a real clean up plan. Need to know and fragmented. By design.

    • jackassrig

      Right @fireguy. Most people think when TEPCO says the water is cooling the core that the water is in contact with the core. Water boils at 212 degF and the core is at say 2500 degF so the water never gets close to the core. The water turns to steam. The act of changing water to steam absorbs heat – heat of fusion. However, I can't even imagine the amount of water necessary to cool one core. If E = mC2 is anywhere close to correct the energy generated by those cores is staggering. The numbers are overwhelming for this pate. The cooling towers you mention are just to get rid of the condensing heat. Look at the size of the towers and this is just a small portion of the heat of the core.

  • WindorSolarPlease

    With all the technology it surprises me that no one can check and they know nothing.

    I believe it's all top secret information, not for us to know.
    Expect and prepare yourself for the worst.

    Gotta love it when they try to hush things up, somehow secrets leak out.
    Love those honest whistle blowers, bless their hearts, such brave people.

    • davidh7426 davidh7426

      Of course they can check, they could just walk in and take a look. Of course it would have it's down side…

      They'd come out looking like this…

      …which is a bit of bummer, and would play havoc with your chances of getting a date ( except on Halloween ).

      • name999 name999

        david, would it really look like that? Seriously, would your face just melt off?

        • davidh7426 davidh7426

          It's a distinct possibility, what with the accelerated cell death and decomposition due to the high degree of radioactivity and the radiation generated heat. that the cell structure of both the skin and underlying tissue will quite quickly breakdown into GOO!!!

          Of course, this is all just supposition, and we'll have to wait until TEPCO sends one of it's sacrificial minions down there to 'eyeball' the corium.

    • dunkilo

      davidh.. hahahahah that's a good one !
      kinda like sticking their heads in a wood chipper ,to see if the blades are still spinning !
      Experts ,I think,wont go near that Nuke magma !Experts know better!
      Earth continues to be Spiked !As much of the world looks away 🙁

    • name999 name999

      windsolar, Oh, does it need to be cooled?

      • name999 name999

        wind, I am mocking these idiots who created this stuff. They seem to know nothing about it. Or
        it is all classified information so no one can talk about it without getting slammed legally.

        They can't cool the stuff without destroying the waters of the earth. And this is a huge international moneymaker this nuclear.

      • WindorSolarPlease

        What do you think name999..Then tell me how.

        Of course it needs to be cooled continually.
        How – I have no clue.

  • WindorSolarPlease

    Cooled or not..still spreading..still doing it's damage.

    • We Not They Finally

      NOT COOLED [duh.] It's all lies. Once anyone announces that it's still fissioning, it's a great big "how do we get out of here," and that is unlikely to happen.

  • razzz razzz

    Downplay the situation and never mention the facts or let facts get in your way.

    Soon they will report the many (radioactive) melts have no containment. There is lots of (radioactive) debris. They still hope to find (radioactive) fuel remaining in the building but will not be surprise if (radioactive) fuel has melted into many (radioactive) melted blobs and escaped allowing radioactivity to flow to the Pacific.

    Most any 'contaminated' water I would not want to drink but Daiichi 'contaminated' water is radioactive water and I would not want to stand anywhere near it.

  • RememberThis RememberThis

    Members here have been asking for muon scanning for years……

  • dunkilo

    Most "experts"brains are like a BB in a box car .

    • dunkilo

      And most "Experts "egos are the boxcar.

      • We Not They Finally

        "Experts" is just a word. It's all malignant fantasy cooked up for public consumption. It's the language of crap. "Experts" think this and "TEPCO engineers" cannot check on what the "experts" think. They're spinning their wheels, round, round, round they go….

        It's all crap. This is no serious assessment of anything.

  • newsblackoutUSA newsblackoutUSA

    Are these the experts looking deep into the ground?
    They look more qualified than any one coming out of the IAEA, or the NRC, or Tepco.

  • Jebus Jebus

    This must be stomped out…

    Westinghouse, Blue Castle Working to Bring Benefits of AP1000(R) Plant Technology to Western US

    Westinghouse Electric Company and Blue Castle Holdings today announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding to pursue the development of a two-unit AP1000(R) nuclear power plant at the Green River site in Utah.

    Just say NO…

  • rogerthat
    Japan will consider introducing a price-support system for electricity generated by nuclear power to provide utilities with long term revenue stabilization even after the planned full liberalization of the country's electricity market, the industry ministry said Thursday.
    Such a system would enable nuclear plant operators to continue investment in new facilities and upgrade infrastructure even if electricity prices go down after the market is freed up. But it may contradict the government's pledge to reduce its dependence on nuclear power in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident.
    Under the system, modeled on the British framework, a strike price will be set reflecting the massive costs for decommissioning of a nuclear plant and the management of spent fuels. When the market price falls below the benchmark, the differences will be complemented.
    Utility firms fear they may not be able to maintain the competitiveness of nuclear power generation when the 60-year regional monopolies of the electricity market — that have guaranteed them large capital costs — collapses. …

    • We Not They Finally

      All anyone has to read is "price supports" and "maintain the competitiveness." It just means that the public will keep paying for getting nuked, to prevent "monopolies" from "collapsing."

      Millions of PEOPLE collapsing from death doesn't matter. It's all about the public continuing to fund monopolies. Pretty sick that they are using so much verbage to camouflage the most simple dastardly thing.

  • rogerthat

    don't laugh:
    … As Japan Real Time has reported, it is unclear who in Japan has final authority to declare the reactors ready to go. Shunichi Tanaka, chairman of the Nuclear Regulation Authority, has said that the regulator’s job is to check compliance with the regulations and that there is no such thing as complete safety.
    Local governments have asked for the central government’s guarantee of safety, while Abe administration officials have said the regulator’s conclusion speaks for itself and requires no elaboration.
    Mr. Motegi’s comment Tuesday suggested Mr. Abe’s government might be ready to break the logjam.

    • humptydumpty humptydumpty

      The regulators are saying basically, "Don't blame me if another one goes kablooey!" They are anticipating future repercussions from Fuku, as it is, so they don't want to take responsibility for any more Fukupys.

  • rogerthat

    The above two stories make it clear that, under Abe, It's full steam ahead (ha ha) for nuclear power in Japan:
    The people will bear the cost of decommissioning old plants and storing spent nuclear fuel rods, and the nuclear power companies will have a guaranteed river of money to enable them to build new ones.
    The people (thanks to a written government guarantee that nuclear plants are safe) will bear the cost of future meltdowns.

    • We Not They Finally

      Something seriously bad needs to happen to Abe before anything more seriously bad happens to all of US. The bad things will happen anyway because it's past point of no return. But any FUNDS available need be allocated to human needs, period, not to monster NPP's and the monsters who run them.

  • rogerthat

    And the rationale for all this: to fight climate change. I wonder who is writing the script for this? In any event, it is clear they now have one:
    … On Tuesday, Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Toshimitsu Motegi said Tokyo "would like to deal with the matter in time for COP21," or the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, to be held in the French capital at the end of next year.
    Speaking at a government meeting held to discuss national energy policy, the minister said it is important to decide the energy mix "urgently" and discussions "should not take as long as two or three years."

    • razzz razzz

      rogerthat: Appears that the nuclear industry admits to nuclear power being a money losing proposition when only considering wasted fuel storage and nuke plant site cleanup. When your plant melts down it totally blows chunks of money into a void of no return.

      Luckily, a favorable nuke government steps in to socially spread the costs around, of long term nuke waste storage and nuke site cleanup, among the ratepayers. Failing that, all the taxpayers will foot the bill as in some form of hidden tax. Any operating profits go to the nuke cartel of which there are many members least of which include any ratepayers.

      In Japan, there are stockholders in Japanese electric companies but as an example, most of them bailed after 3/11 and now the Japanese government owns more than 40% of TEPCO's outstanding stock.

      Profits to the GSEs (Government Sponsored Enterprises), losses to the little people.

  • rogerthat

    (via mainichi), sorry

    • name999 name999

      roger, France could redeem itself if it advised Japan against starting them up. But I fear they
      will actively help them.

      • name999 name999

        and they have the 2020 Crazy Games there to charge the climate.

        Plus getting dating services and promoting marriage.

        • We Not They Finally

          Yeah, apparently Abe found ZERO dollars to evacuate children and $29 million to promote dating and marriage to fill in the gap of children dying because no one is helping them.

          The logic of the criminally insane.

  • rogerthat

    from wikipedia, on the subject of King Canute:
    Cnut set his throne by the sea shore and commanded the incoming tide to halt and not wet his feet and robes. Yet "continuing to rise as usual [the tide] dashed over his feet and legs without respect to his royal person. Then the king leapt backwards, saying: 'Let all men know how empty and worthless is the power of kings, for there is none worthy of the name, but He whom heaven, earth, and sea obey by eternal laws.' He then hung his gold crown on a crucifix, and never wore it again "to the honour of God the almighty King".[2]

  • weeman

    I don't understand, you say the cores fell into the secondary containment that means it is in one place, in a confined space and in my opinion does it matter if it is covered in water or not? You must have heat generated and a simple infrared device should be sufficient, to determine if it is in building?
    No heat signature or dispersed heat vents implies deep in ground?
    Never stop asking questions?

  • earthsmith earthsmith

    Deep in, deep out
    Circulation, circle how
    Direct interpretation, disinformation plow
    Inside out, upside down
    Triple top circus, everywhere is a clown
    Dosey doe, cozy flow
    Soiled garments, boiled arguments
    Fragments of reality, unification is the casualty
    Augmented thinking, direct tinkering
    So how has it come, to let it be seen
    The visions of nary, set to the obscene
    Spoils to be delivered, severed at the spleen
    Set to the doctrine, societies are sinking
    Lost in the coils of our own thinking
    The universes smile is now shrinking
    Yet it's tears fall in our waters
    Causing death of all our resources
    The abomination of the most sacred
    There will be payment, the earth will not go vacant

  • We Not They Finally

    Yeah, the "debris" just stays in containment at the bottom of the vessel and cools down. Then Tinkerbell comes along with fairy dust and it all magically disappears [sarc]

    Apparently the only reason that they cannot check on this {allegedly) cooled-down debris, is "the extremely high radiation being emitted by the surroundings." This creates "noise that could disrupt the study."

    Wow. If only the "surroundings" could pipe down and be less noisy, we might be able to discover that it's all cooled, all contained, and just one big giant false alarm.

    Do they make up this gibberish as they go along??

  • Thanks for the visual, NHK. For those who watched the video would have seen the meltdown simulation played over and over again. You would think NHK's Nuclear Watch could have interviewed a couple of experts to posit possible scenarios but folks that's just not the way the banks want this story reported.
    Nevertheless the technology to generate nuons beams is still experimental.

    So this appears to be more whitewash. Face the fact of a ruined cooling system that didn't survive the triple meltdown and a core dissolving into the groundwater besides our Pacific. Bio-accumulation folks.

  • I guess this new muan technology can be funded by another bank loan.

    Tepco is into the banks for billions. I think that's why USA is complicit in the media black out of the triple meltdown and the orchestrated downplaying of health effects. This detection technology is experimental and won't stop the radiated water from seeping into the Pacific. Most likely cores are melting and dissolving into the pacific.

  • EKO K£AP$€

    What a load of bullshit, cooled down (implied) as in no longer active. Utter desperation in the dying days of atomic sin.

    Shall we speak of salt water and sulphur transfiguration?


    Cores as hot as the sun?

    Pathetic losers!

    Knowing their track record in truth telling beep, beep, beep, beep ………………..

    Now what did that guy say about being gods to themselves, a quote from Indian sacred text?

    What we need is some good works intervention. Too many lifeboats have already been given, how many more examples of this loser technology do we need?

    The End.

  • Nick

    Today the operators at the Fukushima N-PPP are attempting to do a study to find out where the missing coriums are.

    Due to the high levels of radiation it will be a challenge to sift out the noise and have the muons bounce around in a manner sufficient to obtain proper data.

    This is an exciting study and engineers from all over the planet are flocking to Fukushima to hold their collective breathes.

    When the study is complete (estimated time… um, wait, I need to check my teleprompter….it says when the sun becomes a red giant)
    operators across the globe will have a nice three-ring binder on their special safety-protocol bookshelves to refer to in the event of a goof.

    In other news, Japan is leading the way in the artificial intelligence industry, but computer experts are baffled by the quantum noise that seems to be coming from Fukushima.

    But not to worry, a team of baffle experts are standing by with their baffle-irons.

    Anyone get the sense that NHK's bats have left the belfry?

  • " They’re going to have to do this for at least 7 or 8 years, maybe longer, maybe 10 years….”
    Tonneau des Danaïdes! Definitely…

  • tsfw tsfw

    Yay does this mean in a few years we'll be able to make corium pops and strontium slushies? I hear cesium cream tastes like grape. Lying dipshits.

  • humptydumpty humptydumpty

    Maybe they could make a scale model in the lab to duplicate the ground substrates and groundwater flow-through based on core samples and geological surveys, then simulate a small meltdown to see what happens.

    I would bet that even after more than three years the molten material is still boring its way through the mud and bedrock unpredictably, as evidenced by the detection of ever higher concentrations of radioisotopes in the water flowing out into the bay.

    Even if a significant amount of the coria has cooled, that doesn't stop the ongoing contamination of the Pacific. Now that the material has burrowed and spread, I think it's highly unlikely they will be able to locate all of it, let alone to "remove" it.

    If only TEPCO had devised a plan early on to contain and/or channel the melt-through. They seem to have been obsessed with cooling and storing cooling water. I wonder what the IAEA plans to put in its revised operating manual, yet to be written, for "worst case remediation."

  • Why are they saying they will be looking 'deep underground' if they are so sure that the coriums never left containment?


    And how do they look deep underground if they need reflector plates on each side of the corium? Hmmmmmm?

    Looking above ground, just in the reactors, is the same as not looking for the coriums at all.

    Where are those multiple melted out coriums, TEPCO?

    When are you going to stop the Niagara Falls of high level nuclear liquid waste pouring out of multiple reactors, going into the Pacific?

  • Is this just another tactic to make it look like they are doing something, when they are really just fluffing the curtains and making things look better at first glance?

    Sweeping all of the radiation under the ground and into the Pacific is MUCH easier than cleaning it up.

    • bf9 bf9

      Unfortunately that appears to be the case. And people of EVERY nation should be vocal about this…

      but here we are.

  • We Not They Finally

    The latest crisis is the Ukraine and Putin..Putin announces that he wants to stop the American Petrol dollar which could cause an economic crisis in the United States…Are we in the USA already deciding to go for WW111??
    That would certainly drop the worlds population…

  • We Not They Finally

    To make sense of all this you have to get what the motives of the"Elite" are….Its ironic that the elite are a group of reptilian blood line ancient ones who have been in charge for much to long a time.

    Motives that stand out include lowering the worlds population to 500 million or so.Whatever does it they will go with.radiation Cancer,Plagues and WW111 must be on their to do list.Ridding the world of any souls who differ from them are also on the to do list…For my sensibilities leaving this very sick world and going to some other more friendly world… Would be really nice.