NRC comments on steam at Fukushima Unit 3 — Gundersen: Plutonium could be causing fissions, heating up melted fuel (AUDIO)

Published: January 10th, 2014 at 8:45 am ET
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119 comments


U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman David McIntyre on steam coming from Fukushima Daiichi Unit 3, Jan. 9, 2014: “This also happened last year at this time, and periodically since the tsunami in 2011 […] We are in touch with the Japanese regulator and TEPCO, and from what we’ve seen and heard there is no reason to suspect that this steam is an indicator of anything bad happening.”

July 23, 2013

Scientific American, Jan. 9, 2014: The radioactive detritus at Fukushima is still throwing off roughly one million watts worth of heat, according to Fairewinds Energy, a nuclear safety advocacy group based in Burlington, Vt. That heat turns water into steam—and when the air is cold enough, as it is in winter in Japan, that steam is visible. […] Nor is this plume of steam—sometimes visible, sometimes not—only apparent in winter. When the atmospheric conditions are right, with relatively low temperature and high humidity, the steam is visible even in summer, as happened in July 2013. It is fortunate that physics suggests such steam is nothing to worry about, because it is impossible to check firsthand. Due to the meltdown in that reactor, radiation levels are too high for any human to enter without receiving an unacceptable dose.

Nuclear expert Arnie Gundersen of Fairewinds Energy Education was asked about the steam coming from Unit 3 during a Jan. 6, 2014 interview on Coast to Coast AM (at 1:22:45 in): Fission products continue to be hot for 5, 6, 7 years so the plant is going to continuously steam even then. I have another theory […] there’s a large blob of nuclear material underneath the nuclear reactor, and this is from the meltdown. […] When all the uranium gets close together — especially in Unit 3, the plutonium emits what’s called spontaneous neutrons — neutrons you need to perpetuate a chain reaction, so the spontaneous emission of these delayed but spontaneous neutrons can cause other fissions inside this blob of material there. It’s something called sub-critical multiplication. […] The net effect is scientists aren’t looking at all the heat sources. You’ve got this radioactive rubble and that’s the focus, but it’s possible that we can also be having some additional fissions that are occurring in that blob that are keeping the remnants of the core hotter than scientist would believe that is occurring.

Full broadcast for subscribers to download here — For now it’s also available on YouTube here

Published: January 10th, 2014 at 8:45 am ET
By

119 comments

Related Posts

  1. ‘Mysterious’ steam at Fukushima Unit 3 — NPR: “Fuel could have shifted… or worse restarted nuclear reactions” — Tepco: “We still don’t know for sure the cause” (AUDIO) July 25, 2013
  2. Gundersen: New data shows Fukushima exceeds Chernobyl… Plumes seen emanating from both the Unit 3 fuel pool & reactor — Nuke Engineer: Broken fuel rods are above all 3 melted down reactors — Gov’t Experts: Unit 3 explosion may have damaged spent fuel & released even more radioactive material (VIDEO) February 9, 2015
  3. AUDIO: US gov’t experts think melted fuel rods landed in water under Reactor No. 2, causing STEAM explosion — Pressure dropped dramatically at same time — Clear indications primary containment lost March 2, 2012
  4. Gundersen soon after 3/11: Photo shows nuclear fuel is exposed to air at Fukushima Unit 4 fuel pool — Clean path for plutonium to escape offsite (VIDEO) February 23, 2013
  5. Gundersen: Very visible steam at Fukushima Unit 3 is from constant radioactive releases — Coming from hot rubble, not related to new explosion January 1, 2014

119 comments to NRC comments on steam at Fukushima Unit 3 — Gundersen: Plutonium could be causing fissions, heating up melted fuel (AUDIO)

  • Ontological Ontological

    We all have seen the steam in the cam images in summer also. This is not just a winter effect.

  • Sickputer

    Are you smiling today Tacomagroove? 🙂

    It's Slinky
    It's Slinky
    For fun it's a wonderful toy
    It walks downstairs
    Alone or in pairs (or threes)
    And makes a Slinkaty sound

    Everyone knows it's Slinky
    It's Slinky
    It's Slinky
    For no fun it's a nuclear toy

  • Rufus

    A question:
    We read of the scientists quantifying the amount of radiation released and the amount onsite for potential release.
    But, if there are 3 coriums under ground, reacting with the existing soils, does that mean additional unknown amounts of unknown kinds of radiation are being released… radioactive "dirt" for lack of a better term?

  • Sickputer

    The coriums are not properly cooled. Just leached a bit by the ineffective Tepco cooling efforts (blind ass mass dumping of water down a bottomless pit). The underground river and tidal surges wash isotopes from the fission process forever into Fukushima ocean lagoon. Let Kenny swim there.

    So they are refissioning? Surprise, surprise. And what does that mean for the "cold shutdown conditions"?

    Never happened, probably never will. Not at the level of resources currently expended.

    Fred Astaire was right. At least for Japan. Doom time.

    • Ontological Ontological

      Wide open field of study for new "fission products" to be let out of the genie's bottle.

      • Looks like some of them got to Jamaica. Some of us conspiracy theorists suspect there might be a slight "weakness in the inspection procedures".

        Radiation Alert – Harmful Elements Detected At Ports In Shipments From Japan
        http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20140110/lead/lead1.html

        "At the same time, Reese said the JCA, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will be seeking to have "urgent discussions" on the issue with officials at the Japanese Embassy in Jamaica.

        He said the meeting will be used to underscore the need for enhanced inspection mechanisms before goods are shipped out of Japan.

        "It could be that there is a weakness in the inspection process on that side," Reese surmised."

  • hello all! again
    Its me from Chile!
    I still think we can add several years by moving south now!

    I need sales people who want to help me grow this business. Chile is a great place with plenty of room for us geek types- in fact they are open to new info. All of my students young and old know about Fukushima and false flag wars.

    Look at Valdivia on Google Earth. A great place to be as the bio-web of our dear home begins to collapse.
    http://www.restartchile.com

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Sorry my translation skills are poor.

  • we all are from a group of 1500 out of Africa my friend
    this our home to defend, rebuild live anywhere we want and can!
    Our existence is always in a fine balance given the nature of astrophysics.
    . You are not your purse nor you country of birth you are a human that came from a group of 1500 or so from Africa
    we is cousins. and my cousins home is my home.
    we loves each other

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    But there is no way in the damn world..I'm going to post any interest in any area..
    For whatever reasons…

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    PS. But this is me..

  • come and surf with me
    House and 10 acres for $50,000 near the beach plenty of room to grow your own food
    LOTS of trout in the many streams, Think oregon/north Calif in much better condition and mostly underpopulated.
    close to modern small towns in the most south you can get to and live well ALL things considered.
    Come visit!!

  • I have a large home with rooms for newcomers and refugees.
    ALL are WELCOME.!

  • johnnyo

    …….

    Delicious tuna
    Nothing bad is happening
    Let's go surfin' now

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    steamy wonders @ fukushima daiichi npp 2014/01/08

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i4_N9n1_7Mg

  • socref

    I was right! Subcritical multiplication from spontaneous fission. I guess Gundersen does read this blog after all!

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    "what we’ve seen and heard there is no reason to suspect that this steam is an indicator of anything bad happening.”

    By proclamation of David McIntyre, NRC

  • retali8 retali8

    What a failure nuclear power is when things go wrong? It's likely humans or robots will never be able to enter those buildings due to the lethal level of radiation, how nuclear plants can't be siphoned out is beyond me, and just wait till another one goes off,

  • retali8 retali8

    They are an absolute ticking time bomb for humanity itself, without a doubt.

    • Ontological Ontological

      Wormwood extract is a light pungent oil that was mainly used for removing fleas in ancient times. Blood of the Earth, oil, we "bite" into her with drills, we suck blood, and generate noxious gasses. An infestation. Flea bombs perhaps, timed realize poison, one well shaken 6 pack 'o nukes to go off every 7 or 8 years?

      • clamshellernh clamshellernh

        Sorry talking my language …..This herb is used in making absinthe and it tastes awfully bitter I put it in capsules and have used it on the dogs for a wormer Wormwood tea benefits include its excellent carminative properties, so it can assist in solving many gastric problems like bloating, flatulence, indigestion, lack of appetite, mild forms of gastritis and gastric pains, and so on. It is one of the most effective herbal products for curing and preventing many of known liver problems, including jaundice and hepatitis. Drinking wormwood tea is associated with more effective detoxification and better function of the immunity system. Besides, as the name of the herb suggests, wormwood tea can be a good remedy for intestinal worms and other parasites. Do not use if pregnant there are so many other herbs out there that taste better and do the same aside from worming it grows all over wastelands and many diff end varieties but the wild ones is the one I used . It makes beautiful herbal wreath bases

        • Ontological Ontological

          Thanks clamshellernh! Finally someone got the point I made in one of my posts. Yes wonderful substance for so many things. Also red clover tea, or boswella(frankincense)is great for inflammation, the key aggravator in many low dose exposure symptoms. Apple pectin, also maple syrup heated to 120F and clean sodium bicarbonate. These are the things that has the alkaloid "imbalance" carcinoma hates.

          • clamshellernh clamshellernh

            Red clover is great for red blood cells something that gets trashed from cancer therapy , it has to be the red and they taste delightful too . They go bitter in tea
            I'm interested in learning more about clamshells being used to teste radiation .and accumulating it . I must get the right counter as I can report back my findings from the Atlantic coast . I'm having a hard time cutting and pasting on this iPad .so bear with me
            . I should have my other computer up and running but it's a linex operating system and comcast does not support it if I get in trouble . Oh my the rads in this house from all this comcast . Also I would like to test the spiderwort plant next to wifi come spring ..the flower actually changes color when exposed , I know that the application of lime changes my Hydraingas sp.
            What's the chemical structure of lime calcium as it relates to nuclear structure . I'm going way out on a limb here as far as my knowledge goes with the basics but I can learn .

  • We Not They Finally

    Arnie says that it may be "sub-critical multiplication" causing "additional fission"? Don't really know how that works, but any acknowledgement of an ongoing ticking time bomb is at least the acknowledgement of an ongoing ticking time bomb….

  • Nick

    "Nor is the radioactive contamination from Fukushima the cause of changes to Pacific sea-bottom life observed in recent years off the U.S. west coast, as the marine scientists at Deep Sea News recently noted. Those shifts most likely stem from the copious quantities of carbon dioxide spewed by fossil fuel–fired power plants that are changing the climate and, thus, the tiny plants known as phytoplankton that serve as the base of the oceanic food chain."
    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=what-to-worry-about-after-fukushima-nuclear-disaster

    CO2 is the enemy? Just WHAT is it doing to "the tiny plants.."?

    " It is fortunate that physics suggests such steam is nothing to worry about, because it is impossible to check firsthand. Due to the meltdown in that reactor, radiation levels are too high for any human to enter without receiving an unacceptable dose."
    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=what-to-worry-about-after-fukushima-nuclear-disaster

    How on earth can Scientific American get away with this horrid article? How is it fortunate that physics suggests such steam is nothing to worry about???

    Because the NRC said so.

    Read this article. Reread it. If you don't puke, you are a troll.

    • We Not They Finally

      How did "NON-Scientific American" even have the gall to print that? Phytoplankton is PLANTS. They BREATHE CO2. It would not hurt them, it would feed them.

      • Ontological Ontological

        The pseudoscience of politics: if you can't dazzle 'em with brains, baffle 'em with bullshit.

      • humptydumpty humptydumpty

        Ocean acidification is what they are referring to, which is caused by CO2 absorption in the oceans.

        • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

          Actually the nuclear industry is always blaming CO2 for all the problems in the environment which is caused by nuclear reactors and the entire fuel cycle:

          “…The Nevada nuclear tests have spread radiation poisons throughout central and eastern United States and Canada, and produced in the stratosphere a layer of radioactive material which encircles the globe. They also cause nitric oxides to form in the atmosphere which then descend on earth as acid rain. Radioactive chemicals can now be found in the organs, tissues and bones of every individual in the Northern Hemisphere, and the contamination from past nuclear explosions will continue to cause environmental and health problems for hundreds of thousands of years, even if all nuclear activities are stopped today. Siberian tests affect the north polar region….”
          http://www.ratical.org/radiation/NRBE/NRBE12.html

          • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

            I meant to say the entire nuclear fuel cycle. Radioactive nuclides are destroying everything, and cause acid rain and climate warming, as well as increase in cancer and heart attacks and numerous other health problems, and destruction of IQ and the human genome. There is nothing positive about nuclear energy or nuclear weapons.

            NUCLEAR SPELLS DEATH. As someone else said, you can't hug your child with nuclear arms.

    • dosdos dosdos

      Scientific American has been stilted pro-nuke since day one. I used to like that publication back in the 70's and 80's. But the new generation of staff that has taken over since then is just pathetic.

    • SykeWar(DELETED) SykeWar

      Scientists are by observation part of a religion.

    • Questionit

      It is getting to where they cannot deny something is happening so they divert attention by claiming a different cause. Since CO2 has been the boogyman to a lot of people, many of who are paying more attention to Fuku that the general pop., they blame it on CO2 (the known enemy of those people that the nuclear people want to go away).
      So, some will be torn, here is a weapon to use in their war on CO2, do they use it or do they stay focused on the real cause.

      These articles seem over the top silly but they must work. These type of articles also show that no matter how obvious the cause is or how silly their deception they will refuse to acknowledge it.

      Science is swayed by money more than true science.

  • vicky13 vicky13

    MMMMMM yummmyyy cesium137 jam,,

    thanks to SimplyInfo for this,, HEADS UP folks,, back AWAY from the JAM!!

    http://www.fukuleaks.org/web/?p=12058

    thanks nukes now our jam is glowing,, boooooo!!!

    • pure water

      Thanks vicky13@!I needed such comparison.

      • vicky13 vicky13

        Hiya pure water,,

        Berries are a huge part of my diet, especially blueberries.

        I don't eat much meat, more salad, fruit and nuts. I eat really low on the food chain for 90% of my diet. Soon I won't have anything left to eat except peanut butter.

        • pure water

          I am glad for you Vicky!You need only a nice glasshouse or a tunnel with proper water supply.Air is another story and everyone should be careful.

          • vicky13 vicky13

            Hi pure water,,

            Yeah would be great if I had a green house, plus the house to put it in. I live in a apartment so growing my own veggies it not a possibility. I guess if it gets really bad I could live in crunchy peanut butter. It is one of my main food groups anyways.

            Bummer that berries are going to get messed up though I eat a lot of those and leafy veggies.

  • Ontological Ontological

    Berries in that region have been glowing since Chernobyl, now getting warmer as every year FUFU adds to the mess. When the T2O(di tritium oxide} levels get high enough we could use the fruit pectin that absorbed all this glow glop as hydrogen isotope spectrum light bulbs.

  • dosdos dosdos

    It's too radioactive to approach, but nothing bad is happening? Is that double talk or what?

    • denial is not a river in Egypt

      Shhh….don't upset the sheeple…

    • Gasser Gasser

      Fly a Drone with a Geiger counter into and around the steam plume as close as possible, if it's electronics get fried and it immediately crashes, well then sumpins' wong…but then again, TEPCO may take a few hundred bucks loss and reveal to much…shootzzz back to the drawing board.

  • isogoodhumans

    With radiation in food safety limits 10x weaker than Japan's, North American food and agricultural imports from Japan escalate

    http://www.vitapect.org/blogs/news/articles?cache=false&preview_key=a0a5ec64084a19f2e3f8077fe8ae62d2

  • hvypetals

    jim stone is saying fukushima is Japan's 911 carried out by Israel when japan agreed to give Iran enriched uranium. he also says the contamination is being played up using fear based mind control to cover up that Israel planted nukes in the reactors there.

    google "Israel did fukushima" on youtube.

    notice how when the tsunami hit there was little to no actual earthquake damage? buildings were still standing right? unlike the kobe earthquake where buildings were tossed around like chicken bones. what does that tell you?

  • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

    "…some additional fissions that are occurring in that blob that are keeping the remnants of the core hotter than scientists would believe that is occurring." Arnie Gundersen

    Here is the truth. Corium is heated by ongoing fission, rather than from decay heat alone. That fission goes on and on. And not from Pu neutrons alone.

    I am not concerned at all about wispy steam now and then exiting from Reactor3.
    But I am very concerned about TEPCO's utter failure to locate and map 257 tonnes of missing nuclear fuel from Reactors1,2,&3.
    I am very concerned that TEPCO continues to perpuate the myth that the 3 missing cores are still contained within the building ruins of Units1-3, rather then lost in the earth below.
    I am very concerned that nothing is being done to divert groundwater around Units1-4.
    1,000 tonnes of groundwater flows under FDNPP and into the ocean every day.
    The Pacific Ocean Ecosystem is collapsing right before our eyes.

    Where is da damn corium, eh TEPCO? 😉

  • Questionit

    The corium is not sitting under the reactor the corium is out of containment under the building and interacting with the groundwater.

    What is happening down there they do not know.

    Monitoring wells between the plant and the bay started showing increased groundwater radiation. Then the data from those wells was stopped. The corium has and is contaminating the groundwater and as previously calculated that water has started to exit into the bay/ocean with very high strontium. It will take 150 yrs (forget the number might be 200) for the radiation levels in this water to decrease much.

    • Playing "Where's The Corium?" is pointless.

      What do we now know? 1. Total meltdown and melt-through RPVs at units 1 & 2 (most pipe damage from EQ) within first 24 hours. We know from endoscope and robotic examination that the bulk of those flows went through the downcomers into the suppression chambers/torus room floor.

      Quite interesting corium behavior experiment (using molten glass) at this link:
      http://www.fukuleaks.org/web/?p=11930

      Note in the schematic diagram of the containment drywell that the round central pedestal 'room' that would have received the corium has an open 'doorway', and picture that around the 'shell' there are 8 downcomer vents (2-4 of which would have been directly in the ooze-path of escaping corium). Which explains why we've only seen results for some (not all) downcomer vents from TEPCO's examinations. (Cont…)

    • (Continued)

      The vents were closed by power failure, but once the valve headers were melted by the corium the 2 downcomers on which the corium was sitting [#4 & #8] would have failed and the corium would then escape into the first basement level (torus or floor) by about 30-36 hours.

      There will still be corium 'film', maybe some puddling, in the inner room and on the floor of the drywell outside the door (occasionally hit with water since mid-late September 2011), but bulk was in the first basement within ~3 days. Where there's a lot of water – torus usually half full or more after SCRAM, plus sumps were out, a tsunami happened, and a groundwater 'river' runs through any/all lower levels.

      When hot corium hits a goodly amount of water it tends to 'shatter' into quick-cooled rocks with the consistency of pumice (as 2nd biggest flow at Chernobyl did when it hit the basement). It also produces explosive amounts of hydrogen/oxygen via radiolysis. This would mean these flows are not still a moving molten mass, but it's still radioactive as hell. Because the basements are flooded the groundwater becomes increasingly contaminated. As does the ocean, into which the groundwater is flowing.

      Any portions of corium that managed to find pipes to melt/flow into before hitting torus/flood water will be more consolidated mass.

      What happened at units 3 and 4 is trickier…

      • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

        Maniacs have no clue what they do and this ought to work out real well for the world.

        Ban this Nuclear Technology from this planet and call it a day.. 🙁
        http://www.infowars.com/japan-to-recreate-nuclear-meltdown/

      • Shaker1

        Sensible. It's rather daunting at times when trying to visualize such things for a layman. I think some have this 'flowing like water' type of image, and I don't believe that's close to correct, or that the mass will remain as a 'blob'. One has to understand that it's a limited source, and sometimes I think the scale that one can visualize is somewhat limited, as that mass is expressed as weight. For instance, a ton (2000 lb) of uranium is one 1.71 ft3, where a ton of steel is a bit over 4 ft3. I truly believe that the whatever might contain it is compromised, intentionally or not, so water introduced has contact with the material and flows out with constant replenishment. It does bother me, though, to hear of steam rising from fissures in that geology, though I've no idea of the scale of that steaming or the fissures themselves.

  • Tung Jen Tung Jen

    agagliasso…I think I will hunker down here in Belize, but it sounds good to me!

  • SykeWar(DELETED) SykeWar

    From Scientific American, "It is fortunate that physics suggests such steam is nothing to worry about, because it is impossible to check firsthand." So, because we can't check to see if our hypothesis (suggests) is correct, there is nothing to worry about. WTF! Because of what is at stake here, you will not get the truth. SCIENCE IS A RELIGION.

  • WWJD WWJD

    The article states that no human can enter reactor 3 (I assume they are refering to taking readings – investigate) without receiving an unacceptable dose.

    Do they now refuse to use the word "lethal" dose and substitute "unacceptable"

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    THE STEAM IS DEADLY . . .

    Nuclear radiation blowing in the wind.

  • Shaker1

    It's all a matter of interpreting what is read. What Scientific American does say in saying it's not visible all the time, is that it is there all the time. Basically, it's also an admission that atmospheric radioactive emissions continue. As for 'fissions', I think that should be something that should also be assumed rather than not, given that I don't believe there's any question that the fuel melted in admittedly at least 3 instances. The melt's configuration is uncertain, but generally thought to be, with some exception, in more or less contiguous though respectively separate masses.

    Personally, I don't think that the question of criticalities is necessary at this point. What is there is admitted. Obvious, also is atmospheric and aquatic release that is continual, and what has been done to minimize either hasn't been anything like I would imagine is necessary or responsible. From that point one can argue whether what is released is available in concentrations that may be harmful. But I can't possibly imagine even the most fervent nuclear proponent choosing to eat or drink or breathe something that registers 100 CPM over the same item registering 10 CPM. That's nonsense to assume otherwise. I can accept that the fact exists, while I can also be quite upset that it's a choice in which I have no say and that no studies to my knowledge lend me the comfort as an individual that even 10 CPM of that exposure might be individually harmfuless.

    • artika rama

      shaker1 Totally agree with you . Science only gives us the facts , its just a tool nothing else , but the interpretation of those facts is where it gets messed up by those science religious fanatics ,,as sykewar mentioned. They can be very smart to solve / understand science issues but sometimes they lack other very important characteristsics and they can get overconfident thinking they can beat nature ,, and we end up with fukushima s and chernobyls ,,

  • SykeWar(DELETED) SykeWar

    If you've ever watched videos of volcanic vents in Yellow Stone during the summer, you will see a tremendous amount of refraction when observed from the side. Depending on the amount of refraction observed, it can be estimated the volume of heated air being vented. In some cases it's very large in other's very little. But in all cases, you see no steam or slight wisps of steam when the wind blows which is NOT indicative of the air volume. In the winter though, you see much steam. This would indicate atmospheric condition must be "right" to see steam. But all of this is academic.

  • NoNukes NoNukes

    What has happened to Gundersen's "cold pancakes?" Cold "spaghetti?" This sounds like the plutonium is bacon, still sputtering away after cold shutdown. So now its only DIY food metaphors for us? What a difference 3 years can make.

    The melted fuel is fissioning away in the groundwater, in the ocean, producing poisons that reach all around the northern hemisphere, as gases, etc., and into the southern hemisphere, and poisons that will last for lifetimes, generations after generations, destroying the DNA of plants and animals, damaging the earth's atmosphere, etc..

    Massive amounts of steam and smoke are coming from the vicinity of the common spent fuel pool and reactors 5 and 6. Is Tepco talking about reactor 3 to distract from the trouble at the common spent fuel pool and reactors 5 and 6?

    nuckelchen
    January 9, 2014 at 2:02 pm · Reply
    yep,
    u're right,
    smoke & steam on
    2014/01/08 14-15 JST :
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_48pgMt2BA
    http://i.imgur.com/EpTbO0t.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/NUXO0C5.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/0n3cQkk.gif

    nuckelchen
    January 8, 2014 at 10:59 pm · Reply
    and one more,
    2014 01 09 02
    http://youtu.be/HqGFEGFQHgs

    nuckelchen
    January 8, 2014 at 10:38 pm · Reply
    fog & clouds @ Fukushima Daiichi 2014 01 09
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HB6xePr_sko

    http://enenews.com/forum-fukushima-webcam-discussion-thread-dec-26-1013-present

  • razzz razzz

    With Japan and its new Secrecy Law, a news blackout has taken place at Daiichi. Not to long ago TEPCO was injecting nitrogen into Unit 3 and sampling the steam exhaust for analysis. Actually they claimed the steam was being created when the nitrogen injections displaced the atmosphere in 3's containment, they knew which radionuclides were being released. Now, no one knows if they are still doing nitrogen injection and/or sampling the venting because of the news blackout.

    I would guess they would have to continue injecting nitrogen at least into Unit 3 if not all 1,2&3 units to avoid any hydrogen build up from radiolysis of water if remaining melted fuel is still (that) active. Would be worse if saltwater is involved. Really bad for the workers in the vicinity with continuous venting.

    Unit 2 blew its equipment hatch door open and TEPCO surmised the melt escaped the pedestal and flowed out the door onto the (1st?) floor. Can't find that TEPCO doc right now.

    TEPCO's scheme for Unit 3's steaming…
    http://www.tepco.co.jp/en/nu/fukushima-np/roadmap/images/d130829_01-e.pdf

  • Capt. Nemo Capt. Nemo

    Scientist are hoping for the placebo effect. If we say it's okay, we increase the likelihood of it being okay. Some kind of psi effect? Careful. Unless it can be quantified . . . .

  • 富岡_Blue_Heron 富岡_Blue_Heron

    "It is fortunate that physics suggests such steam is nothing to worry about, because it is impossible to check firsthand."

    How can Scientific American sound so unscientific?

    Let some neutral labs get a sample using one of the cranes and test it. Then it will have been checked and the world will have an answer.

  • cooterboy

    @blue_Heron,
    I addressed this using a crane quite some time ago.
    I am a professional rigger and have looked at the site pictures and by scaling the cranes to the buildings height I figured the booms of the large cranes to be 170-200 ft.

    Site debris will not allow a single crane to get close enough and this crane's boom angle cannot exceed <45 degrees. Jibs appear to be about 30-40 ft. and light weight. These cranes are big but cannot lift a lot of weight.

    However; By using 3 cranes you can reach two of the plants in any xyz axis.
    Position two semi-permante cranes such that their booms are at 60 degrees and attach an 1.5" wire rope (cable) between the two at an static elevation of 120 ft above the plant.

    This would position the cable directly above two NPP's. Attach a transverse dolly to the cable allowing attachment of multiple suspension travel pullys to support data and power cables. This is the x-y axis cable platform.

    For the z axis, crane #3 cable is attached at mid-span with a snatch block which travels the x-y cable and pulls on this cable to position directly over where you want to test.

    Attach any insturment to the dolly, move along the xy cable, to a point relative to where you want the insturment. Crane 3 now pulls the cable on the z axis directly over your checking position. Probes can be lowered using a remote dolly winch, up or down. Problem solved. To string the cables, between the cranes use a rope throwing gun, 50 cal.
    Peace,

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