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Asahi Shinbun Confirms Nuclear Rods In Pressure Vessels And Spent Fuel Pools Are Damaged

Tyler Durden's picture


Well, in tried and true fashion, it took Japan a week to confirm what everyone else had been certain had occurred over a week earlier. According to the Asahi Shinbun, with a translation courtesy of Ex-Skf, we finally know that the "nuclear fuel rods in the pressure vessels and in the spent fuel pools at the plant have been damaged." Which means that any incremental work the repair crews may be doing at this point is simply window dressing in preparation for the concrete tomb/lead bath.

From Asahi:

TEPCO released the test result of the air sample taken from Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant today [March 21]. Analysis of the sample, collected on March 19 at 200 meters from the northwest corner of the Reactor No.1, showed the level of radioactive iodine at 6 times as high as the safety limit; it also showed the existence of cesium.

Both iodine and cesium are byproducts of nuclear fission. The test seems to confirm that the nuclear fuel rods in the Pressure Vessels and in the Spent Fuel Pools at the Plant have been damaged.

It took TEPCO 2 days to analyze the sample, as the sample had to be taken to Fukushima II Nuclear Power Plant for analysis.

In the meantime, in the "continuing lies from TPTB category", we realize that the bioRobots which had last made an appearance in Chernobyl are back in full force in Fukushima:

Japan's nuclear safety agency said on Monday it
acknowledged a risk of radioactive dust being inhaled by workers at the
stricken nuclear plant in Fukushima, but had seen no sign yet of that

Could they be more specific: "there were no signs of workers breathing in air", or "there were no signs of "volunteer" kamikazis growing a 4th arm in the last 168 hours?" Surely both will be perfecty contained outcomes to this increasingly more irresponsible disaster. 


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Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:10 | 1080605 SilverIsKing
SilverIsKing's picture

They are waiting for confirmation before jumping to conclusions.  Once the workers' hair begins to fall out, they'll do some further testing to confirm whether any radioactive dust has actually been inhaled.  My guess is that they'll attribute the tumors to the workers' bad smoking habits.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:51 | 1080705 SilverRhino
SilverRhino's picture

Now the big 64 trillion dollar question.   Is the fuel IN or OUT of the reactor cores and containment vessels for the spent fuel rods?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:44 | 1080942 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture


thinking out loud, silently, SilverRyno, i would say fuel IN the reactor cores for 1-3, most prob. 4, and also 5 & 6, where the reactors haven't appeared to go ape-shit,  although, again, we have no thermal data. 

spent fuel rods?  there were certainly thousands, probably tens of thousands and quite possibly hundreds of thousands of spent fuel rods in the containment vessels.  bundled arrays of these rods are the modular fuel.

1-3 were producing electric.  not sure about 4, think not.  5 & 6 not.

#3 was using a mox fuel, with some plutonium;  no too much info out about how much of this fuel and waste was around.  again, no thermal data, either.

that's my understanding of the scene at the time of the quake and tsunami. 

after which, we have pictures, videos, announcements, and not too much good news.

and in spite of how weird it seems to us, i personally don't think that a nuclear plant in your or my back yard, subject to a 9.0 and a 30-ft wave, and maybe us, too, would be any less "weird" than it is for our neighbors in japan.  but, we would be at least twice as cool about everything, of course.

i agree with tyler that this will end in cement and lead.  somehow.  and yes, many of the "workers" may buy the ranch from this job.

i do not agree that any other work is "window dressing" because there may be an aspect of getting the materials more under control before entombment, again, because of the heat build-up.  perhaps that will be possible on site.  one would hope so. 

no matter what level of preparation is needed for whatever is designed and decided, this is gonna be a pretty rough place to work. yet, it must be done.  i don't know how.  i don't even want to think about it.

but, i will.  i think the japanese are gonna take care of it.  and i don't think it's gonna be very pretty.  maybe that's a little faustian, but isn't just about everything, these days?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:16 | 1080971 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

I feel for you. and don't lick my ass Bitch. Rants are good! Rant on and get it out! You are smart!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:31 | 1080835 willien1derland
willien1derland's picture

Any organizations aligned with the government as well as the MSM divorce causality from time - if it doesn't happen within 30 seconds of a given event it is unrelated (this is now considered scientific fact by any government agency) - I had family members & friends who worked at the Savannah River Site (SRS) and many who worked at a similar location over a period of time died of leukemia...the Government & their contracted resource du jour settled...but of course within the settlement agreement it was all unrelated...I think all DoE personnel & their families in Washington DC should be forced to work/live near/at the reactor sites they regulate - or better yet put a nuclear reactor right next to the House, Senate, & Supreme Court - anyone for Nuclear Power then?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:33 | 1080879 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

Very true willien. It's equally true for the wars they instigate and send off other people's children to fight.

It's a diseased system, rotten to it's core, whose time has come.



Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:22 | 1080900 franzpick
franzpick's picture

Send all 435 members to a nearby overheating reactor for 1 month of 'continuing education' per year.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 08:42 | 1081166 MSimon
MSimon's picture

There is always Islam.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:37 | 1080903 PY-129-20
PY-129-20's picture

This is also interesting. (Source: German magazine: "Die Zeit")

In Hitachi, a 100 kilometres south of the nuclear plant, spinach had a Iod-131-value of
54000 becquerel and a Caesium value of 1931 becquerel per kilogramm. In Japan normally 2000 becquerel Iod and 500 becquerel Caesium is maximal allowed.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:46 | 1080997 BigDuke6
BigDuke6's picture

The Japs need to be men, like the Right Stuff.

Inspiration can be found here.

check out the apollo mission eulogy to be read by nixon if they died.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:13 | 1080610 dannyadornato
dannyadornato's picture

Just posted on Kyodo News:

NEWS ADVISORY: 1 worker found to be exposed to radiation of 150 millisievert per hour

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:20 | 1080626 Blorf
Blorf's picture

Did they leave any info as to where to send the flowers?  Jesus, that is like getting a CT scan every few minutes.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:17 | 1080932 KevinB
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:24 | 1080762 Attitude_Check
Attitude_Check's picture

For how many hours?  if exposure is less than 500mS then bad but not horrible.  If above 1000mS the that would be bad.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:30 | 1080772 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Dear Check,

Please click this link to Time Magazine, and help me ascertain if the geiger counter says 0.35 or 0.035 as claimed. Thx.,8599,2060448,00.html

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:56 | 1080812 majia
majia's picture

Well my eyes saw .35 very clearly.

It is possible that I don't know how to read the gauge and .35 really means .035.

However, after watching the Battle for Chernobyl (recommended by posters)

I am very pessimistic and fed my child seaweed (snacks) tonight, which he insisted on washing down with barbeque chips and powerade because he said it tasted so baaadddd.... (i thought they were good....)

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:03 | 1080818 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

Sea cucumber is the ultimate source of clean iodine, but it's definitely an acquired taste.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:31 | 1080901 franzpick
franzpick's picture

Well it has been a clean source, but I won't be acquiring much of anything after April 1st; I did order 8 bottles of sea kelp caps last week in lieu of KI.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:51 | 1081001 zhandax
zhandax's picture

I stopped at GNC for a bottle of kelp tablets Friday night.  Three stores within about 5 miles, all sold out.  At the third, I asked the clerk who did have some.  She checked all the GNCs within 20mi, 50mi, 100mi and 500mi and all were sold out.  500 miles from here is halfway to Miami or New York.  Tip: at a different vitamin store (also sold out of kelp) I did find some bottles of liquefied bladder-wrack.  It is a different species of seaweed which is similarly rich in iodine content.  Apparently not as well known.  First prescribed in the British Isles for goiter (iodine deficiency) in the 1800s.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 07:29 | 1081028 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

I'll remember that when I catch a dose of thyroid disfunction!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:58 | 1080861 Tecla
Tecla's picture

Meters are configured to choose a multiple, x1, x10, etc. The picture is not clear enough to determine what it's set at. 

Some research on seaweed sounds like most of it is indeed a good source of iodine. Watch out for Hijiki( however as it's been found to contain inorganic arsenic which is decidedly not good(and potentially cancer causing). 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:06 | 1080964 ColonelCooper
ColonelCooper's picture

@ Check:

Are you getting your milli's and micro's mixed up?  500 mSV is 1/2 of a sievert.  Per hour.  That's 50 Rads.  Per hour.  I would put that in the horrible range.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:14 | 1080614 UGrev
UGrev's picture

There is no greater shame or dishonor than to place a price on a human life. That is exactly what these people have done. Fuck your share-holders.. 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:41 | 1080683 fasTTcar
fasTTcar's picture

Just apply the formula.

h/t fight club

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:51 | 1080917 XPolemic
XPolemic's picture

Take the number of vehicles in the field (A)

Multiply it by the probable rate of failure (B)

Then multiply the result by the average out-of-court settlement (C)

A x B x C = X

If X is less than the cost of a recall, we don't do one.


(Sorry for the Karma Whoring, but couldn't resist)

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 07:19 | 1081020 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Dont be!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 08:47 | 1081189 MSimon
MSimon's picture

The alternative to running those numbers is that only the rich can afford a car.  You would prefer to drive a bicycle?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:18 | 1080620 greatscott
greatscott's picture

The next thing you know, we will be hearing via Ann Coulter, don't worry a little toxic radiation will give you some well deserved time off.  Permanently!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:12 | 1080969 No Hedge
No Hedge's picture

yeah..a little bit of radiation is good for your skin and wrinkles.. go for it :-)

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 08:52 | 1081201 MSimon
MSimon's picture

To prevent significant radiation to the human body you will have to give up unpurified sources of potassium and live far underground - provided you can make your underground shelter uranium free. That shit is everywhere.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:17 | 1080622 Mentalic
Mentalic's picture

Just to add to this..Was watching NHK live press conf around 30 mins back...

TEPCO spokesperson was saying workers are being trained on pouring concrete ...but, did not specify where they will be used...

Looks like the entombment that a lot of ppl wanted would eventually start...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:38 | 1080906 franzpick
franzpick's picture

Wonder if they're neglecting to train the tunneling crew for digging and pouring the underground concrete foundation, or maybe they're just going with 'Out of sight, out of (your) mind'.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:20 | 1080629 Paul Bogdanich
Paul Bogdanich's picture

"NEWS ADVISORY: 1 worker found to be exposed to radiation of 150 millisievert per hour" 


If that's all that happens it would be a great outcome.  Anyway, if they can get it cooled then they can entomb it and then they can measure the final damage declare a quarantine area and reevaluatge in 60 years after the Cesium has gone through two half lives and the iodine through seven and a half.     

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:38 | 1080669 ruffian
ruffian's picture

WRONG....unlike chernobyl these fuel rods are suspended 100 ft. in the air on upper floors of the reactors.....pouring concrete on top would crush the reactor structure and create a giant pile of splintered fuel rods at ground level that would heat up and crack the tomb and/or melt right thru the bottom !!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:36 | 1080756 Rusty Shorts
Rusty Shorts's picture

This is the truth.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:51 | 1080885 herewego...
herewego...'s picture

fair point. it was a dumb place to put those sticks.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:43 | 1080908 franzpick
franzpick's picture

It's GE's fault.  All 3 of my top-loaded GE washer-dryer-fridge appliances have melted down.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:43 | 1080910 franzpick
franzpick's picture

Caution:  Junk in the road ahead!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 08:21 | 1081107 whoopsing
whoopsing's picture

Who'da thunck it was a bad idea to stack firewood on top of my fireplace ;)

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 10:30 | 1081639 flattrader
flattrader's picture

Possible solution--

Start pumping concrete from the bottom to the level of the bottom of the pool, then fill in from above.  This might avoid collapse of the pool structure.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:21 | 1080631 Spastica Rex
Spastica Rex's picture

More negativity from Zero Hedge. Why do you hate Japan? As Meher Baba said, "Don't worry, be happy!"


Remember realism is really just pessimism and we can't have any of that. Soma for all!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:36 | 1080657 Filthy Rotter
Filthy Rotter's picture

My Friend,


I'm sure everybody here on ZH would help, if they could...physically, mentally, financially...    And I can nearly say for certain that NOBODY here HATES fucking MORON!


People are letting off steam in their own way.  Do you have another way for hand-tied, intelligent people to do that.


Go FUCK yourself REX!  You have NO idea how good it felt for my fucking fingers to just type fucking SPASTIC!

No matter how shit it gets...we'll find a way...all of us.  But fuck-arses like you will always need to be carried.  Gobshite!!!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:39 | 1080671 Cleverbot
Cleverbot's picture

Yes, you're much less articulate.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:42 | 1080682 Filthy Rotter
Filthy Rotter's picture

Very clever.



Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:48 | 1080703 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

WARNING! 150 milli-Sdf and rising. (Sdf = Sarcasm detection failure)

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:20 | 1080759 Filthy Rotter
Filthy Rotter's picture

150 milli-Sdf  x 1(*fBh) = Just' Man...THz (microwave man)!





Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:27 | 1080770 Attitude_Check
Attitude_Check's picture

I think you need to refine your sarcasm filter.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:50 | 1080956 Optimusprime
Optimusprime's picture

Calm down.  Didn't you see the reference to "soma"?  This is obviously sarcastic.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 07:30 | 1081029 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Voltron Bitch!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 08:56 | 1081219 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Soma for all!


I had no idea you spoke Italian.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:23 | 1080636 Paul Bogdanich
Paul Bogdanich's picture

Just as an aside that CAPTHA funtion really sucks.  It asks thing like -54 plus X = -90 so the answer is -36 and then you type that in and it says invlid caption too many characters.  Then you have to keep doing dumb shit like that until it gives you a question with a single character answer.  It's a suck utility. 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:40 | 1080678 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

Helpful hint: when it tells you you used too many characters, ignore it, and hit the "save" button again. Your post will go through.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:52 | 1080707 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

It's part of the 'intelligence and perseverence' test. I quite like it. If anything, the error message should be more insulting.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:59 | 1080720 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

ROCK on earth/waves.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:52 | 1080919 franzpick
franzpick's picture

Yes, the signal to radiation level still runs too low at times.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 09:42 | 1081407 MayIMommaDogFac...
MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture

All right, if the applicant is young, tell him he's too young. Old, too old. Fat, too fat. Lots of CAPTCHA characters, tell him too many CAPTCHA characters.  If the applicant then waits for three days without food, shelter, or encouragement he may then enter and begin his training.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:27 | 1080643 Pchelar
Pchelar's picture

TEPCO released the test result of the air sample taken from Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant today [March 21]. Analysis of the sample, collected on March 19 at 200 meters from the northwest corner of the Reactor No.1, showed the level of radioactive iodine at 6 times as high as the safety limit; it also showed the existence of cesium.

Later that day TEPCO also issued a report that indicated that the Pope was Catholic, along with pictures of bears shitting in the woods...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:28 | 1080645 chump666
chump666's picture

yeah they will tomb another explosion takes place, maybe reactor 3.

another bet, radiation levels will go upward tonight Japan time...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:32 | 1080650 Monetative Easing
Monetative Easing's picture

Radiation levels are increasing in Tokyo.

Currently reading 22+ CPM.  Was around 20 about three hours ago.  I know its not significant in and of itself but its certainly disconcerting.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:44 | 1080691 chump666
chump666's picture

Every trader in the world knows the Japanese govt is a complete joke, especially FX moves.

But after this, I seriously do not know how the Japanese cope with this BS. 

Their govt and officials have been partying in Singapore today (Asian time) with the wolrd bank.  The shit they have been saying rallied eveything even with the oil spike. CRazy

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:58 | 1080923 franzpick
franzpick's picture

Be patient:  The mobile radiation app MRR is just around the corner.  Unfortunately, so is the radiation.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:31 | 1080654 trav7777
trav7777's picture

Water is wet again, boilermaker is still a douche.  The sky is up.

Wow, fuel rods are damaged?  They said this shit half a week ago, 40% damage in one core, 20% in another.

WTF was expected without coolant for a week?

I still want an answer as to why #5 and #6 did not melt down...if they had power, why could not a POWER COMPANY splice a lead over to the other plants and round-robin some cooling until a hardline or other backup generation could be imported?

I mean, I'm sure Japan was pure chaos after the quake and tsunami and maybe I am expecting too much but their response seemed totally paralyzed.

I'll go out on a limb at this point and say the United States is calling the shots at this point.  I expect that our initial offer of backup generation was rebuffed or else was too conditioned to be accepted with face, and because our experts knew the plants' configurations, they assessed high probability of meltdown, hydrogen explosion and SFP problems, so the decision was made to move our assets to a position where costly decontamination would prove less probable.

I had heard reported that the US "strongly recommended" the chopper drop and probably the fire trucks as well.  At this point is when Mr. TEPCO went on TV crying.  Perhaps his incompetence was finally manifest at that point and he had to be relieved.

The things I was calling for 2 1/2 days before they happened, surely there were others who knew these things and were making the same suggestions; unclear is why TEPCO failed to implement in a timely fashion.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:38 | 1080667 Cleverbot
Cleverbot's picture

You are expecting?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:09 | 1080733 Boxed Merlot
Boxed Merlot's picture


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:04 | 1080737 Boxed Merlot
Boxed Merlot's picture

Wow, fuel rods are damaged?

And this was supposed to make me feel better?

From an email I received in a corporate correspondence encouraging the sales staff to go out and make things happen this weekend: "and the good news on the radio isotope that hit Sacramento, from JAPAN, WAS LESS RADIATION THAN 30 MINUTES IN THE SUN. All Great news..."

Conspicuously absent was any mention of whether this occurred one time, is expected to continue to occur, is increasing or whether it will increase in severity and frequency in the near and/or distant future.

Good News?! Good Grief! What if I don't want to go out into the sun?! In March?!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 10:08 | 1081529 Iam_Silverman
Iam_Silverman's picture

" What if I don't want to go out into the sun?!"

Now, due to the increase in background radiation, you don't have to!  Good news,now hit those new sales leads you slacker.  Just think - this is another corporate end-around to a new tax.  Once they start taxing the use of indoor tanning beds, all you need is  a rise in background rad levels and you can tan indoors, tax free, all in the comfort of your own Northern California home.  Have that healthy glow year round now!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:24 | 1080760 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

On why they couldn't provide generators, I think there's more to this than the stupid 'didn't have correct plug' or whatever.
Yes, there's mountains of lies and crud, same as every other aspect of Fukushima. But to be fair, I suspect the generator problem really was a show stopper.
Probable factors:
* The installed generators (that got flooded) were probably really big, as in a megawatt or more.
* The pumps to circulate cooling water, against reactor vessel pressure, are also probably really big, and needed generators of the capacity installed or nothing doing.
* The sorts of portable generator sets people imagine (shipping container size) just aren't big enough.
* There was no road access, so transportable generator size was limited to what could be helicoptered.
* Japan has (unbelievably) two different distribution grid frequencies; 50Hz and 60Hz. See  Given all the other bad luck, what's the bet the generators they were able to provide (if any) were the wrong frequency?

There wasn't that much of a window of opportunity between the quake, and when the explosions began.
Friday till Sunday. You reckon you could organise a one megawatt generator and heli transport in that time? In the middle of all the other tsunami disaster chaos? Plus, one doesn't just use an 'extension cord.' That sort of power takes really fat cables, that come on those huge wooden spools. Which are way too heavy to manhandle, so there's another logistics problem, just unrolling the cable - it takes machines to drag that stuff. Plus, where to connect it? The generator control and switch room was probably also flooded.

Btw, here's a before/after pic I did, showing the washed-away diesel fuel tanks:

A commenter at zerohedge earlier pointed out that maybe there was a regulatory requirement those tanks should have been moved to higher ground (as they appear to be at the Da-ini plant). This would explain a lot of the secrecy about the cause of the generator failure, since if true, it would mean that the entire chain of breakdowns would be legally the culpability of TEPCO. Not saying this justifies their bullshit, just makes it more understandable.

It also appears the generators were in the basement of the turbine halls. Which flooded. Really, really bad design choice, even without a tsunami. Bad things can happen in generator halls.

As for running cables between the 5-6 plant and 1-4... 5-6 had one working generator, one down. So one handling two sets of loads, which had to be driven alternately, and could melt down if they stopped. I think I'd choose to keep at that and not try adding more loads too. Improvising could have broken their last generator. Plus, any existing cables between the plants probably had the 'switch rooms flooded' problem. And laying new cables not so easy.

Overall I'd say the situation was doomed once the quake-tsunami overwhelmed the existing design failsafes. Simply not enough time to improvise alternatives, amid the ruins.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:39 | 1080784 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Nice work. I have a question. In the "after tsunami" pic (which is also after explosions), is that white stuff an atmospheric cloud over the water or debris from #1 explosion thrown in the water?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:57 | 1080813 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

It's neither. In the full image (see here: it looks like sunlight shimmer off the water surface, combined with some fuel oil slick giving coloration.

I used that image rather than earlier satellite images, because the angle of view is closest to the google maps 'before' image.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:12 | 1080824 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Thanks. Another question, if you know. In this banal press item, it seems to suggest Reactor #2 had a fire, i.e., the one that didn't explode. Did #2 burn?

The Fukushima power plant, about 220 km northeast of Tokyo, was stricken by the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami that led to explosions in three reactors while a fire engulfed the fourth one.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:32 | 1080842 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

I've slightly lost track. Been meaning to try and find/construct a timeline for each of the reactors, but not had time. Wasn't #2 the one that had a 'strange noise' from the lower internals, suspected to have been a suppression pool torus breach?

One thing I noticed, there was never an official announcement (or I missed it) that #4 actually had an explosion. One day it had 'some damage' then the next day we're looking at pics of the top of #4 looking blown to shit. No long range NHK footage of #4's explosion, which is a shame. Did it happen at night, or was there an interval when no one had cameras pointed at the site? Or has NHK been told that the next time they air 'exploding reactor' videos they will all be shot?

My exploding nuclear reactor video collection has one missing, dammit!


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:49 | 1080855 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

I ask about #2 because all the sat photos show it emitting steam from an aperture on the west wall.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:04 | 1080863 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

Yeah I've been wondering about that too. Looks too neat and local to have been a diffuse H2 explosion in the building. There was mention of knocking holes in the buildings (#2? Also 5 & 6) to let out accumulated H2 before it exploded.

But that leaves HOW do you knock a panel out of what turn out to be quite thick reinforced concrete walls? While working in radioactive mix of steam and possibly hydrogen? Do you risk making sparks? Do nuclear power stations have stocks of shaped charge blasting materials, or did some military guys get handed that wonderful job?

Maybe they have one 'easy knockout panel' for just this situation?

I doubt we'll ever know, unless some revolutionary mob of Japanese storms the TEPCO offices and carries off all the documents, like happened with the state security offices in Egypt.

I'm assuming the steam is from the #2 SFP, slowly boiling away.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:13 | 1080872 PhattyBuoy
PhattyBuoy's picture

It is the core venting thru a release valve, or through the supression pool in the bottom.

#2 core is melting.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:07 | 1080866 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

EAST wall btw. Seaward side.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:44 | 1080883 FilthyLucre
FilthyLucre's picture

The JAIF has a reasonable timeline:-

#4 blowup was announced but no video has been shown. Maybe something to do with article 15?

The above timeline says reactors 5 and 6 are being vented.

It also says that reactors 1,3, and 4 at Dai-ni are at level 3 which is the same level as reactor 4 at Dai-ichi - which is all blown up. WTF?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:37 | 1080945 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Still selling those cheezie cars?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 12:37 | 1082068 davepowers
davepowers's picture

interesting point re #4

I think they may have had two explosions. Early on, the press reports referred to two missing 8 x 8 panels on the side or maybe two sides of #4. I think I recall seeing a photo matching that description. That missing 8 x 8 panel version was still being reported in my local paper just three days ago, well after photos were released showing the hell blown out of the thing (maybe not literally). 

Could they have had a small explosion, knocking out side panels and corresponding to the first fire, then a bigger one (more #1 and #3 like) associated with the reported 2nd fire? They then suppressed the bigger visible video.

good luck with the research. Keep a look out for the reports of two missing 8 x 8 side panels. If I find one I'll pass it on.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:54 | 1080811 PhattyBuoy
PhattyBuoy's picture


Amperage draw from multiple plants would easily exceed capacity of (1) genset.

Just like tripping a house 10 amp circuit breaker, when you exceed its load capacity.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:26 | 1080827 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

Nice work with the images. Please do more.

The amount of devastation is unnerving, but to then hear what it is precisely that has been washed or blown away is truly frightening. Everyone involved in designing this monstrosity deserve jail time. This goes way beyond gross negligence into the realm of willful misconduct.  


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:36 | 1080880 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Great picture, thanks WB7.

Look closely, the whole facility was SLAMMED by the tsunami waves, buildings completely washed away along with diesel fuel tank shown.

I'd bet some subsidence of the coastline right there as well, which if not uniform could have ruptured water and electrical lines as well as made the entire facility more at risk to tsunami or tidal events.

People who know the site and the reactors and conditions must be looking at things and saying to themselves OMFG!  But then not expressing the full force publicly. 

What do doctors do when a colleague removes the wrong kidney and leaves a sponge inside a patient?  They call it a slight oversight or a minor complication.  Yeah, like that.



Mon, 03/21/2011 - 10:48 | 1081712 flattrader
flattrader's picture

According to reports I've read the Island not only moved to the East, it FELL 2 feet.

It's not clear to me if it was only in certain areas or Island-wide.

I saw arial photos of a section where clearly the coastline has been pared back.

It was NOT an area flooded by the tsunami.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:43 | 1080882 geekgrrl
geekgrrl's picture

One thing that jumps out at me about the post-explosion image is the two fully saturated spots, one just to the left of the reactor building on the roof of the adjacent building, and the other just to right of your circle indicating the current tank position. These areas also have a purple/red aura/glow, compared to the reflections off the water.

Electronic image detectors often have a wider spectral range than the human eye, and can "see" more frequencies, including some infrared. Some of them are responsive far outside of the normal range of vision. Since there are few, if any, contemporary overhead images of nuclear failures taken with digital imaging systems, I wonder if it is possible we are seeing evidence of radioactive material ejection?

I'd sure like to see a thermal image of this view.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 04:12 | 1080892 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Good points and questions.

U.S. air force sent drones over with thermal imaging equipment but it is all classified.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:40 | 1080948 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

It was mentioned that the US govt gave permission for the images to be released, but surprise surprise, the Japanese govt chose not to.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:59 | 1080960 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

You and everyone else, me included.

About those bright spots:

* The 'cross' shape is an imaging artefact. Observe that many of the bright spots on the water are the same. This is a familiar effect.

* The colored 'aura' around the spot is probably also an artefact. Probably. Notice that various bright spots (the two you mention, plus some in the water) each have different color auras. Plausible causes I can think of include charge injection due to saturation in the imager, or atmospheric refraction effects in the path. But, who knows. Yeah, could be hot spots. Oddly small ones though, if so. No surrounding burn marks visible.

If I had to guess, I'd say they are more likely to be small reflective objects.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:46 | 1080996 Reptil
Reptil's picture

pause at 0:31

what's that?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 10:22 | 1081606 InconvenientCou...
InconvenientCounterParty's picture

ans: something glowing in the visible light spectrum. You don't need infrared imaging when shit gets that hot. Concrete? metal? fissile material? Looks like a steel smelter but who knows?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 09:10 | 1081279 MSimon
MSimon's picture

This qualified Naval Nuke says attaboy. (too old for Bravo Zulu I guess).

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 10:21 | 1081603 Iam_Silverman
Iam_Silverman's picture

"Naval Nuke"

When you come off the pond and assimilate into the commercial nuclear world, your eyes will be opened.  Big, big difference.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 10:20 | 1081589 Iam_Silverman
Iam_Silverman's picture

"* The installed generators (that got flooded) were probably really big, as in a megawatt or more."

Uhmmm, try something larger, IIRC, when I was an operator at Brunswick, their EDG's were rated at 5MW (continuous, 6MW peak with air-assisted boost to intake [jet assist mode]).  The ones at Hatch plant were about the same.  Where I am at now they are a bit above 7MW.  Standing next to a 10,000 hp engine rumbling at 450 rpm at full load is impressive.

I guess that folks think you can run down to Lowes or Home Depot and grab a couple of Honda gensets and a pallet of extension cords and get the thing going.  Even trying to explain 3 phase power requirements goes way above many peoples understanding of electricity.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 12:30 | 1082036 davepowers
davepowers's picture

As for running cables between the 5-6 plant and 1-4... 5-6 had one working generator, one down. So one handling two sets of loads, which had to be driven alternately, and could melt down if they stopped. I think I'd choose to keep at that and not try adding more loads too. Improvising could have broken their last generator. Plus, any existing cables between the plants probably had the 'switch rooms flooded' problem. And laying new cables not so easy.



that sounds like a fair answer to the question of why couldn't they just have one functioning generator run the whole plant

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:33 | 1080655 oogs66
oogs66's picture

doesn't matter...futures up...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:37 | 1080666 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

Oh yes it does.

We just happen to get real news and digest it before the msm spits it out. One thing the msm does do is run with fear on nuclear so stocks will not hold up.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:42 | 1080681 Monetative Easing
Monetative Easing's picture

Of course stocks are up.  Its part of the "all is well narrative" or its simply someone who thinks they are clever by buying when everyone else is fearful. 


However when you think about it, if the people who post here are correct about the state of inflation, fiat money, the nuclear plant or other doomsday scenarios, there is little downside to being long stocks.  Are you going to tell me that fast money and investment bank trading desks are going to lament being long in an end-of-days situation?  On the other hand, if any of this stuff is overblown and extend and pretend works, they'll kill it.  Lastly its not their money anyhow...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:35 | 1080658 Dr. Porkchop
Dr. Porkchop's picture

They haven't tried placing beckoning cat statuettes at strategic places yet.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:43 | 1080686 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Does Feng Shui have a way of dealing with the imbalances caused by radiation?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:26 | 1080839 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

Feng shui and geo-orientation is a Chinese thing. However, the forces are indifferent to the stupidity of mankind.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:34 | 1080943 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

I trust you. I'm on a gulf stream 5 over the South Pacific. Linked via sat. This is no joke.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:34 | 1080659 blindman
blindman's picture

the rolling disasters, one worse than the next, just keep

rolling in.  it is getting to where a total loss of power,

no food, no communication or transportation would

appear to be a step up, in the right direction.  yes, the dark

ages might just be an improvement. ?


Tom Waits - Ruby's Arms


no sarcasm

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:34 | 1080662 99er
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 07:34 | 1081033 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Stay flat. I'm hedging yen.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:37 | 1080668 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

Anyone who can't spot the simple trend of 'lies, lies and bigger lies more frequently' by now has not been paying attention.

It's as simple as that.

Want the truth? They're lying at every opportunity, about severity, frequency and scale of events.

If this were a betting game, you would have and can still make a fortune betting against nearly every single thing that they've said or will say and that they've since revised or will revise.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:54 | 1080712 trav7777
trav7777's picture

meh...not true.

The thing was that they DIDN'T say a lot.  Pretty much everything they said when they said it was true, but they left a hell of a lot out.

But it wasn't as if there was nobody around who was smart enough to figure out what would be happening even if TEPCO didn't say it was.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:29 | 1080841 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

Omission is a subtler form of lie.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:43 | 1080852 willien1derland
willien1derland's picture

And the whole congregation said AMEN -

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:08 | 1080926 franzpick
franzpick's picture

"Where the truth lies" is also tricky. 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:40 | 1080946 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Omit that Lucra bitch!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 07:26 | 1081026 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

We leave Honolulu after refueling and black out. The flight directory is sparce.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:44 | 1080674 fasTTcar
fasTTcar's picture


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 07:34 | 1081034 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Really? I doubt it!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:44 | 1080685 Aristarchan
Aristarchan's picture

It kinda depends on what they mean by "damaged." If the rods are still contained in the core and the pools, then they can possibly be dealt with. Minimum damage to me that sees high Cesium and Iodine means a gap exposure, the zirconium cladding cracked or burned, releasing high levels of radiation normally contained in the gap between the rod cladding and the fuel pellets. Really bad damage to me means fuel rods out of the pool by structural failure. It does not necessarily mean rods in the core melted, since if the containment is still viable, then there are options for dealing with it. If you have viable core containment, the worst case here (in my mind) is spent fuel rod bundles dismembered and lying about at the bottom of the reactor building. I still doubt that, as radiation levels from cross-fissioning rods would be astronomical, not allowing anyone to work even close by the site. And, of course, they could be lying about radiation levels.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:58 | 1080716 Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

Viewing the Chernobyl vidoes again I see the biorobots had the advantage of scooping and dumping the rods and graphite off the roof and into the giant pit below (which used to be the reactor). Then, the Ruskies could dump sand, boron, cement on top to cover it over while then being building the "sarcoughagus" over it. The Japanense have a much worse problem, look at the latest video fly over and you can how badly the concrete reactor buildings have been damaged, the hydrogen explosions were tremendous and destroyed most if not all the integrity of those buildings. How could one expect the fuel pools to be stable, how would you build a "sarcoughagus" over those buildings? You would have to clean up a lot of that debris, prepare a reasonable foundation for that type of building and work in an environment where you are blasted with neutrons and gama rays while wearing lead sheilding and a respirator. This is going to be one tough job.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:21 | 1080758 Aristarchan
Aristarchan's picture

Yeah, that is why I keep harping that if they are going to do a decent job of entombment under the conditions they have, they have to get conditions where they can operate close. I am still not 100% sold that entombment will be required, but I am entertaining the possibility. Your points may be why they are not yet going down that road.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 07:41 | 1081037 A Man without Q...
A Man without Qualities's picture

As crazy as it sounds, maybe rather than entombment, the can build a giant pool, to cover the entire structure.  One of the problems in Chernobyl was what was left of the 190 odd tonnes of uranium had melted (plus sand, lead, graphite) into an amorphous blob.  In this case,  if the rods are largely intact, they can build one giant containment pool, plus a big pit.  They slowly remove low radioactive detritus which they put in the hole, then remove the more radioactive fuel rods to supplimentary pools for more careful disposal.

One thing is clear, the World Bank estimates of $200 bn for the earthquake costs does not include a meaningful estimate of the nuclear accident.  The costs of decommissioning reactors has continuously been understated by nuclear industry lobbies (all major studies have been commissioned by nuclear groups), but Chernobyl was what $18bn?  Cleaning up this mess with the minimum loss of land is going to be certainly more than $50 bn, maybe higher depending on how the wind blows in the next few days or weeks.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:44 | 1080687 Backspin
Backspin's picture

So, cesium has been detected, but no info about how much.  Again, a pretty significant omission.

Unless I missed something.  Any of you know how much cesium they found?  The cesium is, from what I read, a good bit more dangerous than the iodine.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:43 | 1080688 tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

the same people managing the bp oil spill were imported to manage the nuclear disaster in japan....all of the credentialed managers and carefully crafted regulations and laws were of no value in mitigating this mess...

let's build several reactors on a fault line, let's let politicians and executives lie about the situation, let's all pretend this is not really a problem...

the 21st century is all about the flowering and effulgence of incompetence and stupidity at the pinnacle of power....we face a new dark age.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:46 | 1080695 gwar5
gwar5's picture

All Fukushima workers were checked for signs of advanced leukemia and none was found. All is well.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:58 | 1080718 Ahmeexnal
Ahmeexnal's picture

Thanks for the info. Now we can all rest assured all this has been overhyped.

Glad to know those banks passed the stress te...I meant to say glad to know those workers passed their leukemia tests.


/sarc ozy

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:53 | 1080710 10kby2k
10kby2k's picture

I wish nuclear energy was the solution to energy problems. I wish there was more fossil fuel. I wish we were all driving tiny 100mpg cars. I wish we could balance our budget. I wish we lived within our means. I wish government thought long term in their decision making. I wish we could rally together and make the sacrafices to solve our problems.

I hope its not too late.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 03:44 | 1080884 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

In some ways it is (too late) and in some ways it isn't. i feel that collectively, this paradigm that we are so addicted to, is finished and good riddence. 

So far removed, most people at any rate, from what really matters, perhaps this is what was needed to slice/slash our chains, rip off our blinders. Unfortunately, even now, ZH and it's ilk represent a tiny percentage of the global population.

It's going to heave and snort and kick some more, no going back now.

The inversion for us is a renewed inner focus perhaps? Much needed.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:39 | 1080978 ColonelCooper
ColonelCooper's picture

Nah ORI, it's too late.  

I feel the same as you about much of what the world has become, our attitudes etc,  so when I say it's too late, part of me is sad, part is happy, and part wants to let out an evil maniacal laugh like a cartoon supervillian. 

Humanity has made its bed.  Have fun lying in it.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:55 | 1080711 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

And in gestures designed to increase credibility and transparency with its citizens and the rest of the world regarding the status of Fukushima Daiichi, the Japanese Government has slapped no-talkie orders on emergency workers at the facility, imposed a no fly zone over a wide swath of area near the structures, and has shut down youtube.

Some nights I swear that governments are run by people that have gone full retard, and I am subsequently proven right time and time again.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:56 | 1080714 trav7777
trav7777's picture

well at least any lies are transparent LOL

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:02 | 1080723 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

Not that it's significant, but I have a no junk policy. So, I did not junk you.

And yes, their lies are very transparent, and they would get schooled by our government, who probably would advise them (if they haven't already) to just put a limiter in all the geiger counters in use.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:01 | 1080726 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

You my friend gave me my mantra(ICON) Thanks. I knew it would come to me. You kick ass!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:26 | 1080938 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

Tell me how to break the news?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:07 | 1080738 Aristarchan
Aristarchan's picture

Governments are run by people who have their own personal agendas. That is what drives them through the process and to the pinnacle of their careers. The same thing drives superstar bankers and CEO's. Sometimes, I wish people would elect simple fools like me, people with no ambition, no agenda, no desire to get super rich or powerful, no facility to communicate with crowds, no desire to do public service then move on to a lucrative lobbying or industry job, no wish to make people believe what I believe, and no political creed or party affiliation. Of course, they never will, people like me have no votes, would not run, and are probably too stupid to do the job in absence of the normal qualifications.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 12:45 | 1082102 davepowers
davepowers's picture

Coincidentally, I was in a pizza place last nite thinking that everybody in the place, everybody, could do a better job of running the government if they were elected. Well, not the guy in the far corner. He couldn't. Unfortunately, he's a member of the local City council.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 00:58 | 1080717 wawawiwaa
wawawiwaa's picture

Rather than complaining so much about Japan. I would invite you all to view the Hiroshima and Nagasaki test results on about 200k japanese and how much radiation release there was in those two nuclear non accidents.


Furthermore the wikipedia entries for Nevada national security site as well as the Hanford reservation entry might enlighten some of the readers as to what has been done right  here on this soil under the auspices of planned events, not even accidents. WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!! Wake up.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:02 | 1080730 Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

Unfortunately, many of the problems at the nuclear weapons labs is still secret. Hanford and some of the other plutonium and uranium production facilities had secret hospitals where the radiated employees were sent to be studied and "treated." This is a world-wide event being documented from every angle. Not only do we see the dangers up close, but we see even more clearly the mismanagement and lying about the situation. After this "over" the US sheeple will go back to watching regular scheduled programing.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:29 | 1080983 ColonelCooper
ColonelCooper's picture

I'm sorry, I didn't hear you.  I was busy watching this FASCINATING "documentary" on The History Channel about a family that owns a pawn shop in Las Vegas.  Who knew that history could be interesting?

Did you say something happened in Japan?

SShhh.  Now some toothless people are going gator hunting. 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:05 | 1080732 Ahmeexnal
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:14 | 1080751 Aristarchan
Aristarchan's picture

I worked at the Nevada Test Site for a few years, back when they were doing underground testing (atmospheric testing had ended). A few of those did manage to become atmospheric events, even though they were designed not to. But, what we were doing was a far cry from the atmospheric shots.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:05 | 1080735 huckman
huckman's picture

Tax revenues from the oil & gas industry since 1980 outgrossed oil company profits by $500 billion.
GDP would probably be 7% and unemployment halved by now had stimulous been used towards our domestic oil & gas industies and reved up permitting.  Can't the libs just find out some way for them to get the credit for a fossil fuel energy job boom?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:04 | 1080736 huckman
huckman's picture

Tax revenues from the oil & gas industry since 1980 outgrossed oil company profits by $500 billion.
GDP would probably be 7% and unemployment halved by now had stimulous been used towards our domestic oil & gas industies and reved up permitting.  Can't the libs just find out some way for them to get the credit for a fossil fuel energy job boom?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 06:34 | 1080985 ColonelCooper
ColonelCooper's picture

Patience, Grasshopper.  The oil and gas industry will go to work here when THEY DECIDE the time is right.  That day is getting closer.  Lib politicians just do what they're told, same as cons.. 

Why use up what we have when there's still all that oil we can take from brown people? 


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:32 | 1080744 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

Yes, it's a link to NaturalNews.

There is a link below to an LA Times Article, supporting the claims, too.

Am I picking and choosing? Yes. The articles below do not tow the Japanese or IAEA 'company line' that, essentially, "all is well."

But look at the other sources it links to and cites in support of its claims.

You be the judge.

Exposed fuel rods in empty, cracked cooling pool may soon release 130 tons of uranium directly into the environment
Exposed fuel rods in empty, cracked cooling pool may soon release 130 tons of uranium directly into the environment


US nuclear officials suspect Japanese plant has a dire breach U.S. nuclear officials suspect Japanese plant has a dire breach A leak in a spent fuel pool at the Fukushima nuclear plant would be an unprecedented problem with no clear remedy, experts say.



Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:11 | 1080746 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

Irradiations will continue until media coverage improves...

A few things I think I think:

1. The media have been strongly advised to back off.  Market dislocations too severe.

2. TEPCO has nothing.  Hundreds of the top first responders in Japan are being cycled through high radiation levels for water dousing, which is a desperation move that the news in Japan is dutifully reporting as a solid technical achievement.  Operation Extension Cord will be lucky to get the AC on in the control room.

3.  These reactors are very dangerous from one hour to the next.  The armchair genius brigade that says they are cooling rapidly don't get the mammoth scale and thermal mass of these things, or that up to three distinct heating forces may come into play at any of the thirteen reactors/waste pools (tired of calling them 'spent fuel rod pools').  These things can boil a good amount of water even at a fraction of 1% of their operating temperatures.  And they will heat up if left alone, very rapidly if the rods get uncovered.

4.  So far the radiation releases will have minimal effect outside the local area.  Minimal physical effect, that is.

5.  Two routes for more widespread serious contamination: Fuel rod bonfire and major reactor core event, i.e. containment failure.  Personally I think the risk of each is quite high and nothing that has been done has lessened the risk, even the water quenching (as soon as they stop the hotspots head for dangerous territory again).  In fact the water makes the containment vessels more vulnerable due to corrosion and thermal shock.

6.  Institutional response continues to give little comfort.  I believe the entombment strategy is now being actively planned, but in total secrecy for no good reason and with a conflicted, reluctant Japanese government and TEPCO dragging their heels vs. a conflicted, reluctant 'don't offend our friends'/'don't make nuclear look bad' US govt.

7. As the media actively try to fade the story Japan will hang on by its fingernails, one irradiated duty shift after another away from disaster, if they're lucky. 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:31 | 1080774 prophet
prophet's picture

Water helps prevent fire and as you point out fire is one of the biggest risks. 

The reason you are seeing the run off item now is that one of the plans is to significantly increase the dousing. 

Also, for all you go go entombment fans you can't sarcoph (not sarc off) or cask the stuff until the fire risk is fully mitigated.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:47 | 1080795 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Fire risk fully mitigated by what? Perpetual dousing?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 02:24 | 1080834 PhattyBuoy
PhattyBuoy's picture


"5.  Two routes for more widespread serious contamination: Fuel rod bonfire and major reactor core event, i.e. containment failure.  Personally I think the risk of each is quite high and nothing that has been done has lessened the risk, even the water quenching (as soon as they stop the hotspots head for dangerous territory again).  In fact the water makes the containment vessels more vulnerable due to corrosion and thermal shock."

I still believe #3 core is the most dangerous hotspot. Waste rod pools (in the top) can be mitigated with sprayed water (hoses) for some time ...

But if the core suppression pool is compromised, then there is no means to really control & cool core #3. Is there any fix for this? Hosing & venting it down daily cannot fix this.

Complete core 3 meltdown (into the water table) is the worst case scenario, and the trigger for an apocalyptic explosion.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 05:25 | 1080939 franzpick
franzpick's picture

You can envision the fuel rod problem by thinking of the trick birthday candles that light back up after you blow them out.  Only trying to 'blow these big candles out' sends people on a one-way trip to the radiation burn ward.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:12 | 1080748 prophet
prophet's picture

Dry cask industry may see an uptick in activity.  Fukushima now an excellent hot proving ground.

Can you imagine accepting the risk of storing all those hot rods in unprotected metal boxes filled with water where a tsunami might very well wash them inland and spread them over a huge swath of the most fertile land in the country and expose a highly populated capital to a debilitating multigenerational dose of radioactive materials?  Lucky bastards.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:14 | 1080750 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:15 | 1080753 AssFire
AssFire's picture

If they are pouring concrete, they'd better get a carload of Mexicans (about 20).

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:25 | 1080765 VyseLegendaire
VyseLegendaire's picture

If Japan fell into the sea, would you wait a week for Asahi Shinbun to confirm it? By then it would be too late...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:38 | 1080775 gwar5
gwar5's picture


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:32 | 1080776 gwar5
gwar5's picture

What's worse, Inflation or Radiation?

Inflation, because you suffer longer before you die and it's not covered by insurance.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 01:39 | 1080786 Out9922
Out9922's picture

We didn't listen!!!


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