TEPCO having trouble injecting nitrogen to avoid explosion at Reactor No. 3 — Expert concerned about possible explosion at No. 3

Published: June 29th, 2011 at 9:37 pm ET


Hose leak again halts water unit, Kyodo, June 30, 2011:

[…] Tepco has also made little progress in injecting nitrogen into reactor 3’s containment vessel to prevent an explosion.

It began sending nitrogen into the No. 2 unit’s containment vessel Tuesday, but a high level of radiation within the No. 3 building is obstructing preparation work needed to send workers in.

Arnold Gundersen with the latest on the Fukushima meltdowns, Interview by Helen Caldicott, June 17, 2011:

At 17:30 in: Possibility of another explosion at Reactor No. 3

Listen to the broadcast here.

Published: June 29th, 2011 at 9:37 pm ET


Related Posts

  1. Trouble at Reactor No. 3: Unable to inject nitrogen in containment vessel to prevent hydrogen explosion July 7, 2011
  2. TEPCO says it’s “difficult” to start injecting nitrogen needed to prevent blast at Reactor No. 3 May 19, 2011
  3. UPDATE: TEPCO may have to find another way to inject nitrogen needed to prevent blast at Reactor No. 3 May 19, 2011
  4. Kyodo: Nitrogen injections stopped for fourth time in recent weeks April 13, 2012
  5. Tepco Official on Unit 3: “We don’t know if it was really a hydrogen explosion” August 8, 2012

48 comments to TEPCO having trouble injecting nitrogen to avoid explosion at Reactor No. 3 — Expert concerned about possible explosion at No. 3

  • Jebus Jebus

    Uh Homer, maybe it’s because the fucking roof has blown off…

    • SteveMT

      That’s right, Jebus. There is no Reactor #3 building left that last time i checked 5 minutes ago. It is just a pile of rubble filled with MOX fuel.

  • farawayfan farawayfan

    But don’t worry, we’re just minutes away from stable reactor cooling!

  • Nigwil

    How can they inject nitrogen into the reactor when its got a huge hole in the bottom that the corium has dropped through?

    In fact when you look at the wreck that is building 3, where is the top of the containment?

    There’s nothing resembling a ‘Reactor’ there!

    All the instruments are flat-line:

    The temperatures are just getting the thermal radiation from the puddle of corium on the floor beneath

    ‘Some instruments might not be functioning properly…’ Yup.

    But since it was loaded with MOX they are still keen to prevent it becoming even more of a wreck…

    But with the gentle sea breezes wafting right through the entire structure (probably heading straight for Tokyo) it is difficult to see where any dangerous concentration of hydrogen can arise.

    Maybe some of the lower levels have enclosed spaces, but from the videos a lot of those are full of radioactive sludge and water…

    Oh we wish for some semblance of ‘truth’!

  • Novamind

    Just how are they doing this Nitrogen injection anyways? Are there many 300cu. ft.tanks of Nitrogen -manifolded together? Is there a tank truck with pressurised nitrogen? I would expect that the volume of Nitrogen needed to have effect would be considerable.
    Has anyone run into a picture or an Article with description in detail of this supposed Nitrogen injection system?
    I wonder if this is a real or TEPCO B.S.

    • Novamind

      Maybe they lay the Nitrogen cylinder down, point its bottom at Reactor #3 and Sledgehammer the valve off!

      TEPCO fell free to use this in your next press release.

  • irradiated californian

    enenews, this is kind of nitpicking from what the article says fully and putting it together with what gunderson said a couple of weeks ago…makes it all sound worse than it really is…i’ll just be quiet though, not going to get anything better from anywhere else.

    • moonkai

      I do agree. This is a great blog and we are all so lucky to gather here to find great info. But if I may suggest for the headlines to be a little less fatalist, it would be much appreciated. We know the danger is here, specially for us living in Tokyo. We believe that most of the source of info on here is genuine. Keep it real is all! Continue the great work and we thank you (whoever you are) for this amazing blog ! Long live Enenews!!

  • bincbom

    How do you “inject” nitrogen into a ruptured, leaking containment? What does that even mean?

  • Anyone got an update on cooper?

  • jump-ball jump-ball

    Live CoastToCoastAM.com radio tonight starting now EDT:

    Oil & Global Elite
    Wed 06-29

    First Half: Ecological biologist David Blume has updates on nuclear power plant situations, as well as fuel and alternative energy.

    The saying is: if you’re one step ahead of everyone else in business, you’re a genious, and if you’re two steps ahead, you’re a nut-case.

    C2C has lots of the latter, but deteriorating nuclear (and other) conditions could turn some of the too-far-out alternative concepts into ideas whose time has come.

    • itstomd

      I am a computer network guy. I have setup radio stations using shout cast. If someone is willing to run a radio station which can work on any smart phone or computer and some cars via cell phones I can make it happen. We can take calls out of skype and make calls out of skype. We can have lots of audio feeds and such. I just dont have the time to run it. info@radioanyday.com

  • txphysicist

    Highly likely they have dedicated N2 injection lines (containment flooding), and if not, then they can hook up one of the existing lines and use that.

    I’d be more concerned that they think they’re still seeing substantial amounts of hydrogen, presumably from water/zirconium reactions in the molten mass under the rpv.

    Sure be nice to know what is coming off that mess.

  • sickputer2 sickputer2

    Could be they have that Chernobyl-kinda feeling that the corium is fixing to go super KABOOM in the water table. Sure it is really radioactive in that area, but they are right there and have some devices (cameras, and their super duper tent crane)…so they know something about the depth of the corium and they aren’t going to share that until it’s too late if I’m any guess of the intelligence of TEPCO leaders. Who is running the show anyway? The TEPCO scientists or the bean counters? Stomp your hoof twice if you think the bean heads.

    • *stomp stomp*

      Now, yer gonna just stand there, or give me that zeolite-laced carrot?

    • NoNukes NoNukes

      *stomp stomp*

      The bean counters are “lining the sale” for the next explosion. The whole “hydrogen” line worked so well at Reactor 3 before, they are getting us ready for BOOM 2.0

  • Radiation And Wildlife: The Impact On Animal
    Sciencemag.org “Radioactive isotopes are most dangerous when animals’ bodies absorb them, thinking they’re something else. For instance, cesium-137 mimics potassium and is absorbed by muscles, while strontium-90 mimics calcium and is taken up by bones. Since ocean water is full of potassium and calcium in the form of salts, this lowers the chance of an animal’s body taking up radioactive particles by mistake.” essentially, even if the radiation levels do rise in the ocean, the marine life will be unharmed.

    Right … !

    • itstomd



      Chernobyl, the scene of the world’s worst nuclear accident, has defied the gloomiest of prophesies by becoming one of Europe’s richest wildlife habitats, teeming with endangered species.

      The evacuation of tens of thousands of residents living in the 30km exclusion zone around the Ukrainian reactor has resulted in a flourishing community of plants and animals whose diversity has stunned biologists.

      Radioactive fallout from the explosion and fire contaminated 2,800sq km of Ukraine and Belarus, which resulted in the evacuation of 135,000 people and 35,000 cattle and left dozens of towns and villages deserted.

      Although the exclusion zone has been subjected to some of the worst radioactive contamination in history, life in all its forms has proved to be remarkably resistant to the known biological effects of radiation, notably mutations and birth deformities.

      • Arizonan Arizonan

        There are actually two sides to this story! If not three or four….

        Field biologists around Chernobyl have argued about their methodologies for several years. If you go out and count live animals in the field, then things might look bright. However, the wild animals tend not to bring their mutated and sick members to the local infirmary, so unless you are tracking them in situ, you never see these things. If you never see them, then you cannot write down the data. One of the big controversies about the so-called flourishing Chernobyl wildlife refuge is in fact the lack of credible studies. If you don’t fund it, there’s no data. If there’s no data, there’s no problem. This is the same strategy used by the French govt to deny radiation health effects amongst the peoples of the Pacific, and by the WHO to deny DU effects in Iraq. No data, no problem.

  • Radiation Can Cause “Bizarre Mutations”
    Once in seawater, radiation can hurt ocean animals in several ways—by killing them outright, creating “bizarre mutations” in their offspring, or passing radioactive material up the food chain, according to Joseph Rachlin, director of Lehman College’s Laboratory for Marine and Estuarine Research in New York City.
    “There will be a potential for a certain amount of lethality of living organisms, but that’s less of a concern than the possible effects on the genetics of the animals that become exposed,” Rachlin said.
    “That’s the main problem as I see it with radiation—altering the genetics of the animal and interfering with reproduction.”
    Even so, according …


    • itstomd

      how about the repair process that DNA goes through. Can you talk about that. Most DNA can repair. here is some info on it

      Another multi-step process is the one seen after mismatch formation, often
      a consequence of a replicative error. In E. coli, these mismatch bases are
      repaired by a set of enzymes, the MutS, MutL and MutH proteins. The MutS
      protein recognizes the lesion, and initiates the assembly of a repair
      complex containing all three proteins. The MutH protein incises at a GATC
      sequence in the unmethylated strand. Next, a MutS, MutL and MutU dependent
      excision step removes a section of DNA containing the GATC site and the
      mismatch. The resulting single stranded gap is filled in by DNA polymerase
      III. There is currently much interest in what the homologous pathway is in
      mammalian cells, and whether there is interaction between it and nucleotide

  • U.S. Seafood Safe and Unaffected by Radiation Contamination from Japanese Nuclear Power Plant Incident; U.S. Monitoring Control Strategy Explained
    Based on both the information currently available about radiation contamination from the Japanese nuclear power plant incident and on the control measures in place and monitoring efforts by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have high confidence in the safety of seafood products in the U.S. marketplace or exported U.S. seafood products.
    The U.S. government’s measures to monitor and control the three potential routes by which seafood contaminated with radionuclides from the Japanese nuclear power plant incident might enter the U.S. food supply are

  • Fort Calhoun nuclear plant new Fukushima?
    June 26, 2011
    Public Citizen’s Tyson Slocum on Russia Today T.V. about flooding at Ft. Calhoun

    Public Citizen’s Energy Program director Tyson Slocum appeared on Russia Today T.V. on June 20th to discuss the risks of flooding at Ft. Calhoun nuclear power plant on the Missouri River in Nebraska. He pointed out that renewables such as wind and solar, as well as energy efficiency, are ready, safer, and cost-effective alternatives to nuclear power’s many risks.


    • Good post. Loved her intro.

      Russia Today actually blows me away in terms of their ability to handle the tough news items.

      They put the rest of them (CNN, BBC, etc) to shame, or at least make them look insane, which they are. This is precisely why I haven’t had a TV for 25 years now – just too frustrating, and sickening. (Everything is about lying, hiding, not-telling, prevaricating, smooth-talking and sound-biting with over-manicured androids).

      Just before I threw the TV out, I used to jokingly tell people that my favorite was The Weather Channel. (And, they thought I was joking).

    • arclight arclight

      repost …really good article and might go well with this…from your link at beyondnuclear…bear in mind that germany is the major manufacturer in europe..what the usa could do with this sort of foresight and innovation!! a video of how wind solar and biomass can work in germany, and a technique to store wind generated power (with gravity…clever!!)..if this disaster can produce any good outcomes, it might be that the usa might follow germanys example.. its a no brainer…peace

    • itstomd

      i dont like xdrfox, he puts out bad information.

      • itstomd

        xdrfox forgets to tell you that one of the risks, today, is wine. Wine is radioacive, thus your already ingesting radioactive nucli way before this happened.

        Physicists at Bordeaux University have developed a method of dating wine by measuring its radioactivity.

        Philippe Hubert and his team used the same principle as carbon dating to calculate the age of wine by measuring its caesium-137 levels – the amount of radioactive material it contains.


        • radegan

          Yeah, and bananas are bad too. Wine and bananas together are worse than uranium and plutonium together. Why anyone would rather eat a plutonium pop than some killer nanner.

      • BreadAndButter BreadAndButter

        Somebody said here recently: “This site is about getting along.”
        I like the fact that different opinions and info can be shared here, and everyone picks what he/she thinks is useful.

      • @itstomd: Evidently you are a shill/troll here to disrupt the conversation.

        xdrfox is one of the most helpful people on the Enenews site in terms of extremely useful and relevant posts that many have appreciated over the past months.

        Also, red wine is in fact excellent in helping to combat cancer as proven in many recent clinical studies:


        “… resveratrol can facilitate the initiation of cancer cells’ self-destruction …

        “… resveratrol can be found most abundantly in the skins of red grapes.

        “… resveratrol concentration is the highest in pinot noir, followed by cabernet Franc, merlot …”

    • itstomd

      people are getting sick from windmills


      Windmills may be an environmentally friendly alternative energy source but they also cause debilitating health problems, say people who live near them. Wind turbines are popping up in rural communities around the world, including Canada, in the hope that they will reduce reliance on coal and other sources for power. Currently, there are about 1,500 turbines across Canada and there are plans to build another 1,000 to 1,500 in the next year. But some residents who live near wind farms complain the turbines cause a number of adverse health effects, such as crippling headaches, nose bleeds and a constant ringing in the ears. Helen and Bill Fraser initially supported the nearby wind farm in Melancthon, Ont. One turbine sat close to the Fraser’s kitchen window. “We thought, more green energy, this is great,” Helen told CTV News.However, Helen says she developed headaches, body aches and she had trouble sleeping. The dog began wetting the floor at night. http://www.windaction.org/news/18260

      • radegan

        Clearly windmills shouldn’t be located near people. But if your poor poor victims move away, know what? They’re safe and healthy. If they live next to Fukushima and move away, they’re irradiated forever. See the difference? If you prefer nuclear power at least have the balls to move next to one and quit asking others to bear the risk for you.

  • bfly

    PU,im a weather channel fan too…have not tossed the t.v. yet though.I like to see the faces and watch the body language of politicians. p.s. Im a huge xdrfox fan! he has refreshingly open mind and articulates his keen observations well . As we all are bearing witness to the demise of our planet. .

  • bincbom

    I’m sure they ARE having trouble! How do you inject nitrogen gas into a COLLANDER?