Tepco: Unit No. 4 wall bulging — Local deformation confirmed

Published: May 25th, 2012 at 12:48 pm ET


UPDATE HERE: [intlink id=”wall-st-journal-first-investigation-of-unit-no-4-finds-slight-buckling-in-an-outside-wall-tepco-claims-its-far-from-pool-and-no-danger” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Reactor building of Unit 4, Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station
The results of inspection to confirm the soundness
May 25, 2012

Fukushima Diary has the translation:

Here is Google Translate:

Page 8

(Measurement of the outer wall surface) of the slope of the building ② confirmation

On the west side of the outer wall surface in the measurement, local deformation is confirmed, the trend of deformation

To confirm, measurements were performed in the vicinity.

May 25 carried out

[Chart on right side:]

Measurement result (Measurement points – Horizontal difference)

1 – 6mm
2 – 10mm
3 – 7mm
4 – 23mm
5 – 33mm
6 – 22mm

[Bottom Line of Page:]

>> Bulge of the outer wall of the west side was found to be localized.

Published: May 25th, 2012 at 12:48 pm ET


Related Posts

  1. Wall St. Journal: First investigation of Unit No. 4 finds “slight buckling in an outside wall” — Tepco claims it’s far from pool and no danger May 25, 2012
  2. AP: Bulging wall at Unit 4 renews concerns — Gov’t regulators order investigation of fuel pool and reactor building May 26, 2012
  3. Tepco: No ‘major’ deformation or corrosion seen so far in removed fuel assemblies (VIDEO) July 19, 2012
  4. NYTimes: At least two walls of Fukushima No. 4 reactor are bulging and structure is tilting — “Latest findings could add to concerns” June 26, 2012
  5. Reuters: Corrosion is weakening Fukushima Unit No. 4 — Concern quake to ‘topple’ bulging structure — Holds 14,000 Hiroshima bombs worth of cesium-137 August 14, 2013

32 comments to Tepco: Unit No. 4 wall bulging — Local deformation confirmed

  • steeplerot

    Through all this I am trying to find a bright side. Maybe the Japanese should adopt #4 as a cultural commercial icon, like the Leaning Tower of Pisa! Instead of spaghetti sauce they can label their cesium rice (the fuku treat!) and stronium fish products with a little picture of #4 building going over spilling forth it's bountiful harvest. Thaz-a TEPCO AMORE straight to your families table!

    • goathead goathead

      Think your onto something there Steeplerot!! I can only see this developing some form of humiliation, which just might be the motivating factor these fuckers need to shut their shit down!!!!

    • SteveMT

      The billboard will read: One visit to this cultural icon will permanently change your life….unfortunately. Grim humor for a Friday.

  • fireguyjeff fireguyjeff

    So it is bulging out a bit more than a full inch.

    The better question is when did this deformation start happening.

    Ground settling after the quake could easily stress things enough to cause this. Even expected.

    We should be concerned about how much deformation as much as WHEN it happened. Or started.

    If it showed up for no apparent reason in the last month or so then that makes it more suspect than if it was already there before the quake. Just a thought for reference.

    Also, as I recall from prior posts, the building framing was designed and built blow off easily in the event of an explosion.
    Hence, the walls were built to be very flexible.

    Which means that the walls are not seriously thick reinforced concrete.
    Meaning they could bow out easily with out much stress applied.

    Putting my engineer hat on says we have much larger problems to focus on than a 1 inch bulge in a wall meant to flex out.

    And from another perspective, so what if the wall fails completely?

    What really matters is if SFP4 remains stable long enough to get the fuel extracted, assuming that that can ever happen.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Also of concern — the elevation at which the deformation was measured. If it was at the top of the building on the side where it was measured, maybe not such a big deal. But if, say, it was measured at a much lower level, say 20' or 6 meters, the deformation could be much larger at the top of the building or where the SPF lies.

      What's more of concern is what is the ANGLE of the deformation and its deviation from a 90 degree angle (normal squared walls)? The angle of deformation would be much more meaningful.

      The way it's presented, from a civil engineering standpoint, IMHO, this report is just more meaningless drivel.

      Where's the beef, Tepco? Got milk? (Sorry to slip into these meaningless cliches, but it sort of fits the meaningless drivel they are reporting.)

      There's no CONTEXT for this information to make it meaningful.

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        I don't know if "civil" engineering is the right context, either, but a structural engineer could look at the angle of deformation and come up with a meaningful interpretation.

        • ion jean ion jean

          What really strikes me about this diagram first is: WTF…why was the fuel pool built so damn close to the reactor!?!?

          I understand matters of convenience…I put my dish drain very close to where I'm washing dishes…

          I guess in time my tap water may be as radioactive as the pool water at FukuJokeima, so I too will throw caution to the wind…

          I think it's time NATO troops move in to wipe out the terrorist organization called TEPCO and free the poor Japanese civilian victims before all hope is lost.

          Let's see if that ever happens…until then, I'm reserving MY definition of the word "terrorist"!

          • HoTaters HoTaters

            Yes, the design was atrociously bad. I'm still amazed they were ever built this way! What were they thinking?

            Someone must have thought it was a handy-dandy design shortcut, money saving innovation, etc. There had to be a reason … of some sort (however flawed).

      • ion jean ion jean

        Yeah, and we are in the age of 3D digital rendering, so why are these clowns still using 2D???

        Anyone ever see a Wii, GameCube or XBox 360?

        Can't TEPCO afford one graphics workstation with one mid-level designer??


    • The walls of the reactor building were NOT "designed to" blow out easily in the event of explosion. That's just something industry hacks came up with to explain the fact that four of 'em at Fukushima Daiichi blew out during melt-throughs and/or zirconium-cesium and/or steam and/or hydrogen explosions. No reactor building for any GE BWR has ever blown out until last March. The panels in between those columns were nearly meter-thick reinforced concrete.

      Moreover, these babies weren't "designed to" vent gases to the reactor building atmospheres. The very idea of that is technologically absurd in the extreme, yet the hacks would have us believe such nutty schlock as if it were normal operating procedure. That's just flat out not true. Containment pressure is SUPPOSED to vent – as in "designed to" vent – to the stacks.

  • hanaloa hanaloa

    well, whatʻs a little lateral bulging amongst friends?? at least it not tilted, as a whole that is…and good thing that there are no cracks, 1mm or bigger that is…

    just when I thought i had got a grip on the doublespeak, TEPCO floors me once again…itʻs absolutely ridiculous … surreal!! like a Salvador Dali painting with melting clocks and fuel cores…can we "free" and concerned citizens of the world form an international neighborhood watch group and sail over on some Greenpeace ships and relieve TEPCOʻs "command"?

    Itʻs killing me standing by while these idiots decide our planetʻs future through their criminal inaction!! Iʻm on edge everyday waiting for the other shoe(s) to drop! what is Greenpeace doing lately anyway?? How can they have moved on with this continually worsening disaster?? Where the hell are our esteemed universities and all their expertise and resources?? talk about the glowing, listing, bulging, melted and cracked elephant in the room!!

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Yeah, the one that got me was their comment the water was not leaning in the #4 SPF. Get real, Tepco, unless something is moving the water it always lies horizontal on a flat plane. Water does not "tilt."

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    @ hanaloa…Dali's melting clocks…great analogy.
    Radiation has an effect on the structural materials.
    This causing..(I'm sure someone will correct me if this the incorrect term)..slump.

    • What-About-The-Kids

      Yes, great analogy! What I don't understand how anyone can claim to measure the structural integrity of a building that no longer can be called a viable building???

  • CB CB

    Heart of the Rose
    Hearts says
    @CB..I saw this on Fukushima Diary ..Tepco said the sway is within legal limits..65 mm.
    Then I took a visual step back..and looked at the overall condition..and had to laugh (yep..in the way I do).
    AND… I concluded that…Unit 4..could not pass building inspection in my small town.

    @Heart..Sway cool, Tepco knows all about legal limits. WHO set the tolorance to 65mm?

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      65mm measured WHERE? In what context? 65mm compared to what?

      • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

        I am quoting from Fukushima Diary.
        I hope all with knowledge in this area will chime in here.
        See page 5. of the handout …etc.
        Looks to me they are concerned about the lilting of the reactor as a whole.
        Along with the bulging..the "folding".

        • HoTaters HoTaters

          Interesting. I'll have to check that out, thanks. With the translation issues, it's sometimes hard to figure out just what Tepco is actually saying.

          Is it doublespeak, or is it Tepco?

  • I had hoped the Late Human Era would be shown in a better light.

  • 3C

    That building has 4 (count them 4) sides.
    What is TEPCO not saying about the other
    3 sides especially the 2 sides closest to
    the SFP. Often, the chimney remains after
    the house has burned down. Something tells
    me that this wall will be the LAST WALL

  • jec jec

    Problem I see with the bulge is its in the same part of the building as SFP4. Go look at where the GREATEST variance is..looks like a PRESSURE POINT of sorts. So..if this is new or growing, its a totally different discussion than it it happened 311. Per TEPCO this is the FIRST measurement test performed, so there ARE NO older data points. Or that is my understanding in reading the various blogs-so I could be incorrect in my assumption this is the first time this measurement way done. Just have to wonder if TEPCO did similar tests earlier, knowing they had a growing problem. Could be the reason of the slow DRIP DRIP of information coming out right now.

    Of course, we all trust TEPCOs engineering abilities, and honest presentation of data.(sarcasm of course).

  • Max1 Max1

    This picture from just after 3/11

    NOTICE the large crack running from the sea side just above the adjacent building. It runs diagonally down to the basement and torus room.

    A top heavy building sways in an EQ and butts up against a lower and more stable structure… stress crack results. That the building is bulging is not a surprise… it's been compromised by the overweighted top and overfilled SFP dancing in an EQ.

  • tallerjosemaria tallerjosemaria

    @ Steeplerot, a positive minded guy… Great idea but Fukushima is no joke I'm afraid. They could convert North Japan in some kind of holiday city for corrupted politicians and TEPCO heads. You made it, you'll eat it.

  • faithhopelove

    Please be truthful with us. You have taken pains to perform this survey. But there is a valid concern that this may be an exercise in obfuscation with minutiae. We wish to know whether there even really still exists tons of spent fuel in a viable pool in that building, based on some of the questions and comments below, which we wish you to please address:

    1. You have been using large impact stripper tools to remove concrete off of the sides of building 4, per the following video:
    http://youtu.be/AJUMpBEVFeo . How can the pool stay stable with such action?

    2. The even bigger question is how the pool survived an explosion that blew a hole through the thick concrete wall, at the same level of the pool.

    3. There appears to be onsite, open-air incineration; witness the flashing (near ground) between #3 and #4 in the following video:
    http://youtu.be/BXrhFGVcDE0 .
    Witness the 'yellow artifact' at the same location in the following video:
    http://youtu.be/bmV8dcyRYVs .
    Similarly, look at this:
    Please explain these 'incerneration artifacts'! How much radioactivity and toxis waste has been released from them? Where are the measurements? Are you already vacating some of that spent fuel and burning it on-site?!?!

  • andii

    Are these measurements what TEPCO wants us to believe?
    I understand they are trying to put our mind at ease… BUT they don't have a very good record when it comes to telling us with the truth.

  • briarpatch

    The whole thing is leaning. What else do we need to know unless we want to place bets on when that ridiculous leaning structure finally bites the dust.

  • AkDave AkDave

    Tepco has a way of playing down most damage have seen that all the way! I'm thinking things are way worse!! We have new spikes going on around the UAS rad count up in the rain, Time will tell.