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Crippled Cooling Pump At Reactor #2 Puts Entire Power Restoration Plan At Risk

Tyler Durden's picture


Today the majority of the world was celebrating the fact that TEPCO managed to restore the power supply to the radioactive power plant. And in an attempt to present the next straw man nuclear experts the world over began to focus on such secondary aspects of the explosion as rain and sea water concentrations of radioactivity, ignoring on purpose the elephant in the room. In the same time, those whose attention span is just a little longer than the average headline, put two and two together and realized that the key problem at hand has not been fixed at all. Not even close. According to New York Daily News: "Cooling pumps at one of Japan's crippled nuclear reactors are damaged
beyond repair and will need to be replaced, officials learned Monday. The revelation dashed hopes for a quick resolution to the ongoing nuclear catastrophe at the leaking Fukushima Dai-ichi plant. An emergency order has been placed for new pumps for Unit 2 at the
plant, but it's unclear how quickly they would arrive, officials said."
And as readers will recall, and as the below satellite photo will confirm, reactor 2 is the only one of the critical 4 which did not in fact suffer massive explosive damage. So if that one is beyond repair, what happens to the other three? And just what will this much praised power supply at Fukushima actually be connected to? We really urge some journalist to actually ask questions that have a semblance of relevance at the next TEPCO presser, instead of continuing to fill the air with the same kind of fluff that accompanies every single Obama press conference.

This was the earlier attempt by Reuters at redirecting the public attention to the modest far more trivial matters than melting cores:

The reconnection of power at the earthquake-damaged reactors in Japan is a big step in managing the nuclear crisis, experts said on Monday, but concerns about radiation in the air, seawater and food showed the dangers are far from over.

Um, no. Concerns about the core issue at crisis management most certainly remain, as all those behind operation Extension Cord finally realize there is nothing to connect the power to.

More from New York Daily News:

Engineers have worked around the clock to restore power to the facility, but damage caused by the earthquake and tsunami means it may take weeks to repair the required systems, officials warn.

"We have experienced a very huge disaster that has caused very large damage at a nuclear power generation plant on a scale that we had not expected," said Hidehiko Nishiyama of Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency.

Although some headway was made toward bringing less-affected reactors on-line, conditions at the plant remained volatile.

Workers were temporarily evacuated Monday after plumes of mysterious gray smoke rose from a leaking reactor.

Officials said there was no sign of an explosion and that they had not detected any rise in radiation levels.

Meanwhile, officials with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission upgraded their assessment of the situation at the plant, saying it appeared the reactor cores at the most damaged facilities remained contained.

"I would say optimistically that things appear to be on the verge of stabilizing," said Bill Borchardt, the NRC's executive director for operations.

Any why the hell not. If Borcahrdt is wrong, thousands of others' lives are at stake, not his own... And just consider the boost to Mr. Borchardt's nuclear power-themed stock portfolio in the meantime. Of course, if and when the NRC executive is proven wrong, he can just blame it all on misleading and incomplete information out of Japan. Afterall, when is the last time anyone in modern western civilization actually took responsibility for their own actions?


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Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:20 | 1083697 mdwagner
mdwagner's picture

I wonder if Godzilla will be real with all of the mutations from radiation?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:12 | 1083922 buzzsaw99
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:45 | 1084095 snakeboat
snakeboat's picture

I've been waiting for Gozdirra to raise his head, well played!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:02 | 1084162 the mad hatter
the mad hatter's picture

Does it matter? SPX 6666 here we come!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 22:44 | 1084571 OldPhart
OldPhart's picture

SPF 6666 might be better.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:22 | 1083709 A Man without Q...
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:57 | 1084376 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

World media large and small, mainstream and niche, everybody on earth (except ZH and the skeletons on site) says that Fukushima is no longer a threat, completely under control. Gonna be a hell of a shock when it goes from bad to worse.

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 05:31 | 1085176 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture


nah.  why should the facts make any more difference later?  "authorities, who have now fled to argentina, have declared victory and have placed Lindy English @ the site to apply the powercord to Osama bin Laden's ballz if shows up to steal the radioactivity for terrorism."

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:25 | 1083712 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

To fill the order, GE Mumbai will have to design the pumps and then have them made in China in factories supervised by Japanese engineers.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:20 | 1083965 dogismyth
dogismyth's picture

I have to this all by design?  The entire disaster?  How long did it take to get electricity up and running to the pumps?  And now they may have to order a new pump???  You mean they didn't order it ahead of time JUST IN CASE they needed it?

Someone had a vendetta for Japan for whatever nefarious reasons.  This is absurdity to the nth degree.  We can target Gaddafi's shower from 700 miles away with a tomahawk yet we can't provide a generator during a disaster?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:29 | 1084016 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

It's a bitch waiting for ups ground to bring the damn backup cooling pump. Waiting...

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 00:17 | 1084819 Harlequin001
Harlequin001's picture

The only place we have unlimited capabilities is in the movies.

In the real world miracles take a little while longer...

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 07:43 | 1085250 ibjamming
ibjamming's picture

Beautiful comment...and so descriptive of most peoples thinking.  Many have NO grasp of the realities of real life.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:37 | 1084040 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

I don't think the pumps being damaged beyond repair and the cooling system damaged is a surprise.

People need hope in crisis so any small step in the right direction feels better and lifts spirits. Wall St reads the headlines, shots some nose candy and runs with it.

This is going to be a long drawn out problem and nobody has the guts to say it.

Btw spending is way down all over Japan. People are shopping for iPads and clothes.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:36 | 1084041 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

I have to this all by design? The entire disaster?  

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

In play EXACTLY per the GANTT chart timeline so far ...



Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:47 | 1084106 Judge Judy Scheinlok
Judge Judy Scheinlok's picture

"Someone had a vendetta for Japan for whatever nefarious reasons. "

The answer to your question can be found by tracing back and finding who the earliest buyers of US debt was.

Do they expect to be paid back?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:39 | 1084303 Confucious 222
Confucious 222's picture

Uh oh, more bad news... there are special gaskets on each end of those pumps, and you can't re-use old ones, and the place that makes them is closed because they sent everybody home because the banks couldn't get their payroll computer back online because of power outage.

There's a hole in the bucket, dear Henry-san

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:42 | 1084315 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

I'm not sure what all the fuss is about. From what I understand, the water pump from a 57 Chevy will work just fine. Let's pop down to Cuba and pick up a replacement. They have plenty of old Detroit iron running the streets.

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 05:50 | 1085181 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture


but...the pumps keep them from overheating!  i looked at a schematic of this GE coffee pot for boiling water with clean, safe nuclear energy, and, unless i miss my guess,  the valve that needed to be vented, manually, is over 6 1/2 feet in diameter. 

big coffee pots!

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 00:13 | 1084812 Mentaliusanything
Mentaliusanything's picture

Or you could all sing that childhood verse. Billy Banzai would have fun altering the verse to suit this complete fairytale we are being asked.

here's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza, dear Liza,
There's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza, a hole.
Then fix it, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
Then fix it, dear Henry, dear Henry, fix it.
With what shall I fix it, dear Liza, dear Liza?
With what shall I fix it, dear Liza, with what?
With a straw, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
With a straw, dear Henry, dear Henry, a straw.
The straw is too long, dear Liza, dear Liza,
The straw is too long, dear Liza, too long,
Then cut it, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
Then cut it, dear Henry, dear Henry, cut it.
With what shall I cut it, dear Liza, dear Liza?
With what shall I cut it, dear Liza, with what?
With an axe, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
With an axe, dear Henry, dear Henry, an axe.
The axe is too dull, dear Liza, dear Liza,
The axe is too dull, dear Liza, too dull.
Then sharpen it, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
Then sharpen it, dear Henry, dear Henry, sharpen it.
With what shall I sharpen it, dear Liza, dear Liza?
With what shall I sharpen it, dear Liza, with what?
With a stone, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
With a stone, dear Henry, dear Henry, a stone.
The stone is too dry, dear Liza, dear Liza,
The stone is too dry, dear Liza, too dry.
Then wet it, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
Then wet it, dear Henry, dear Henry, wet it.
With what shall I wet it, dear Liza, dear Liza?
With what shall I wet, dear Liza, with what?
With water, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
With water, dear Henry, dear Henry, water.
In what shall I carry it, dear Liza, dear Liza?
In what shall I carry it, dear Liza, in what?
In a bucket, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
In a bucket, dear Henry, dear Henry, bucket.
There's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza, dear Liza,
There's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza, a hole.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:24 | 1083714 Muir
Muir's picture


Jonathan E.: Don't try to frighten me, you don't know how. Now I am going to Tokyo and you are not.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:55 | 1083847 whatsinaname
whatsinaname's picture

Chernobyl Deja Vu ?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:44 | 1084082 10kby2k
10kby2k's picture

Wire service said the containment vessels were not damaged. So, they order all new pumps and appuratus and install and then they can stabilize temperature. If that works....what about the rest of the plant? they rebuild it? they then encase it? In the meantime (weeks was said), are they subject to meltdown?

Is this:

1. A crisis of possible historioc proportion

2. A matter of how much radiation will escape before they can encase the re-actors (localized damage)

3. An attempt to save the reactor and bring it back online?







Mon, 03/21/2011 - 23:17 | 1084689 RichardP
RichardP's picture

1.  Depends on whether the plutonium gets out on a larger scale.

2.  Yes - but not localized damage if the amount is substantial and the wind picks it up.  Or if contaminated water continues to run into the sea.

3.  A TEPCO official was quoted elsewhere as saying that they will dismantle the plant when they can stabilize things enough to do that.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:20 | 1084230 Arch Duke Ferdinand
Arch Duke Ferdinand's picture

""Chernobyl Deja Vu ?""

You Gonna Believe Japanese MSM re: Nuclear Updates?...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:24 | 1083715 knukles
knukles's picture


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:28 | 1083718 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Cooling pumps at one of Japan's crippled nuclear reactors are damaged beyond repair and will need to be replaced, officials learned Monday


No shit. Any dipshit could have figured that out just looking at the photo. What gave it away? Was it the fact that the building is completely destroyed?


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:27 | 1083726 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

When you look at all the photos you have to ask yourself what kind of dipshit morons said that the blasts were superficial.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:37 | 1083739 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Where are the updated photos of reactor 5/6? The ones that are in perfect shape.

...for real though, I am laughing. Look at the photo above in TD's article. They are just figuring out NOWWWW that the pumps were fucked up? I guess the giant green crane that landed on the containment vessel was enough for them to believe an extension cord had a solid chance at fixing this? lol

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:48 | 1083807 gdogus erectus
gdogus erectus's picture

LOL - no shit.  (shaking head)

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:08 | 1083905 The Profit Prophet
The Profit Prophet's picture

Time for operation sump pump.....they must have a large aquarium in Tokyo that people will no longer be's time to eat the killer whales and dolphins before they get too hot, and put those pumps to work saving Japan!!!!

T.E.I.N. everyone!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 23:27 | 1084709 RichardP
RichardP's picture

They are just figuring out NOWWWW that the pumps were fucked up?

I'm sure they assumed something.  But to make a statement requires proof.  Scientific method and all.  Rather than speculating, they waited to make certain that the pumps didn't work.

They will need electricity for things other than pumps.  So they needed to pull the electrical line whether the pumps work or not.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:56 | 1084383 RacerX
RacerX's picture

Fwiw I think the UNITS themselves are seriously damaged. They can scalp pump parts off other reactors.. but looking at the heat signatures, it sure looks like there are a few piles of really hot things strewn about that building. Combine that with the "steam release" (see: Explosion) and I'd put money on the reactor unit itself being kablooied.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:06 | 1083897 Broder_Tuck
Broder_Tuck's picture

I'm relieved to see another person react to that. The power cord surely must have some magic properties since it obviously can turn back time and make these piles of garbage somehow useful to electrify. And how about the little detail conserning the appearently non-existent back-up pumps. Is it for real that they in ONE WEEK have not ordered spare pumps for the plant already? They should be standing there on site, at hand, as soon as they can confirm that the old pumps are broken. And while I'm at it, does someone have som info on the layouts of plant 1, 2,3 & 4 regarding the placement of the SFP's? Me thinks it's slightly important to please in the name of God clarify if the spent fuel pools in plant 3 exists in the first place.

Have anyone noticed the sad St. Bernard dog on the symbol for Tokyo Rescue on the uniform of the firefighter interviewed in the NHK-studio? Almost to much to take, this toy-centered polite culture struggling with trying to comprahend what happened to them is simply heart-wrenching. And the toy-cars on the studio table... I´m not sure why I find them so disturbing.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:33 | 1084035 Herman Strandsc...
Herman Strandschnecke's picture

Yeah, I saw that Fire Chief on NHK. It was surreal him pushing that toy fire engine around with a cute doggy shirt sleeve patch. It's kind like they aren't allowing the truth to set in.

Very sad. Pathetic in fact.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:51 | 1084116 Yits and the Yimrum
Yits and the Yimrum's picture

how do you rebuild these cooling systems, electrical systems and control systems with the radiation levels such as they are?

trained technicians and trade workers are not martyrs; and they need scores of martyrs to work in this Death Valley

go figure?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:14 | 1084205 Broder_Tuck
Broder_Tuck's picture

Try the documentary Battle of Chernobyl (on you tube, google video) for some hints. 2500 liquidators/biorobots only for cleaning the roof. Thats a start, but totally 600.000 people sacrificed their health in cleaning up that site. I have no doubt Japan also have many brave citizens, however the leadership is non-existent. If there is a credible leadership, people will sign up. How are these people supposed to understand the situations if all they are getting is a fucking cartoon of happy happy joy joy? They even botched the led-wrapping on the fire truck. Unlike in Chernobyl. Maybe ad-hoc solutions and going into fast thinking crisis mode was more natural for the sovjet citizen? Since their whole society had been faling several decades...Compare that to Just-In-Time Japan... Maybe their leaders need their disasters to be more sequential and to came with an instruction manual?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:42 | 1084318 chubbar
chubbar's picture

What you say is true but look at all the "face" they are saving! You can't put a price tag on that! (sarc off)

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:58 | 1084147 Da55id
Da55id's picture

the replacement pumps should not have been on site - otherwise they would have been destroyed already. They should have been at a location uncorrelated topographically, geologically and hydrologically. That way these crucial spare parts would have been out of harm's way during the earthquake/tsunami, and thus remain available in an emergency. Takes foresight though...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:22 | 1084231 Broder_Tuck
Broder_Tuck's picture

The foresight of a guldfish in this case.

- Tsunamis around the ring of fire, who would have thunked?

- Back-up generators in the basement, proof of madness on a cosmic scale.


Great Chtulhu will be pleased though, his diciples are doing his bidding well...

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 09:33 | 1085544 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

- Back-up generators in the basement, proof of madness on a cosmic scale.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -


Assumes facts not in evidence; whereas, it would apear the diesel fuel tanks may have been swept away.





God, I love an informed public ...


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 22:20 | 1084492 Diogenes
Diogenes's picture

How many reactors are there, and how many spent fuel storage ponds? And they don't have even ONE spare pump in a warehouse someplace? Hard to believe.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 22:16 | 1084465 Poundsand
Poundsand's picture

To make it looonnnngggg and drawn out, they first had to run the wire for electricity.  Now the pumps are bad.  The world can cheer again when they get the pumps there, just to find out there are no pipes to attach them to.  Look at the photos - the pipes are shot to hell outside the plant, there is no way those things are good inside the plant. 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 23:02 | 1084638 Odd Ball
Odd Ball's picture

The curse of linear thinking.  The disaster management types are especially susceptible.  Orders for every conceivable spare part should have been placed a week ago.  Memo to GE, don't wait till they ask you for the next part - air them all in now.

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 00:11 | 1084805 MSimon
MSimon's picture

It will have little effect on delivery times. i.e. 6 months or 6 months + 10 days.


And then there is the leetle problem of installing the pumps in a high rad environment with the rest of the plumbing in an unsatisfactory condition.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:25 | 1083719 PY-129-20
PY-129-20's picture

But...but...but Doctor Kawashima (yep, the Nintendo-Kawashima) said he would eat the radiated spinach and drink the radiated milk and nobody should be worried at all.

And Tepco was at +17 % today - so, as I said, every other energy company should have a meltdown, because this seems to be good and bullish.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:32 | 1084285 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Hmm, irradiated milk and spinach -- add some three-eyed fish for a well-balanced meal:

LOL! :>D

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:25 | 1083720 VyseLegendaire
VyseLegendaire's picture

To answer the last question, not since.....well, fuck.  Never?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:26 | 1083723 Josh Randall
Josh Randall's picture

There will be another Tsunami -- of more dead bodies, sad times ahead, this Island of Dr. Moreau is just starting to decline

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:28 | 1083724 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

"We really urge some journalist to actually ask questions that have a semblance of relevance"

What do you think this is, the seventies?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:26 | 1083725 traderjoe
traderjoe's picture

They're just getting around to figuring out some new equipment should be ordered? Huh.

OT: funny article in CNBS about gold, ending is amusing...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:29 | 1083728 AUD
AUD's picture

Interesting interview at with a guy who was supposedly a nuclear engineer with the US Navy.

Worth a listen.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:29 | 1083729 riffraffy
riffraffy's picture

So, they put the emergency pump order in---today?

With that sort of planning, not so hard to figure out how this clusterfuck was formed...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:49 | 1083813 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

At this point you would think they have the sense to put in an order for 4 pumps.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:02 | 1083879 ColonelCooper
ColonelCooper's picture

Maybe with the purchase of four pumps, they'll get a free rad meter and be able to tell us what the radiation level is.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:24 | 1083985 dogismyth
dogismyth's picture

They are not westernized enough obviously.  They should have bundles of yens sitting around ready for shipment or handout.  Get Paul Bremer on the job and a good packaging company.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:36 | 1084044 Herman Strandsc...
Herman Strandschnecke's picture

 They want to place a 747 on the beach on full throttle. That would suck in and blo a lot of water backwards?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:36 | 1084293 Battleaxe
Battleaxe's picture

Too late for the volume bonus. The first pump has already arrived:

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:33 | 1084282 RmcAZ
RmcAZ's picture

They have been waiting for one to pop up on eBay... they aren't all that common.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:31 | 1083732 max2205
max2205's picture

TPTB have ordered only sunshine and skittles on this subject.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:30 | 1083736 bmusic
bmusic's picture

So, rally tomorrow?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:35 | 1083754 Aquiloaster
Aquiloaster's picture

Clearly. The more thorough-going the destruction, the bigger the [insert moronic spin statement such as "GDP hike" or "buying opportunity"] 

"Fortunately, the human toll is much worse than the economic toll."

-Larry Kudlow

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 06:38 | 1085211 Highrev
Highrev's picture

Does Time Magazine have an asshole of the year award?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:37 | 1083755 Threeggg
Threeggg's picture

You have to ask ?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:32 | 1083738 umop episdn
umop episdn's picture

The lies/misdirection/spin from all the MSM sources aren't helping an already bad situation. Blowback is a bitch, bitchez!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:45 | 1083785 Threeggg
Threeggg's picture


Did you see TD's write-up about the volume ?

Where is the "Blowback" going to come from ??  Retail ? LOL their not in the market "Either" !

There will be no blowback, price discovery will be removed from every dictionary, for all future educational purpose.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:57 | 1083861 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

I'm not so sure they'll remove it, but rather in pure Hegelian fashion, redefine it as the trigger for Marx's "inevitable collapse of Capitalism."

Price discovery will be lumped in with greed, while being painted as evil and/or savage. Just a little more collective guilt for posessing animal-spirits.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:31 | 1083740 gkm
gkm's picture

Interesting insights here

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:34 | 1083748 lizzy36
lizzy36's picture

Seriously we are T-2 weeks until this is supposed to be over and Japan will start rebuilding 80,000 houses.

Oddly, no anaylst spouting this shit, has "nuclear waste land" in their models. What were the odds?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:57 | 1083762 Threeggg
Threeggg's picture

Just put 2" of clean topsoil on and "Problem Solved"

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:27 | 1083997 dogismyth
dogismyth's picture

Tranvestite Ann Coulter says radiation is good for you.  I guess she is speaking from experience looking at her.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:11 | 1084194 cosmictrainwreck
cosmictrainwreck's picture

holy shite! is she trans? I thought there was something fishy about that "dame"...couldn't put my finger on (in) it

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:12 | 1084199 penisouraus erecti
penisouraus erecti's picture

So....Ann is behind all this? Really? Wow, didn't realize she was even relevant anymore..........

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 01:18 | 1084903 SilverTech
SilverTech's picture

Ann Coulter is actually an alien. The first documented sighting was in the first season of Star Trek in an episode entitled "The Corbomite Maneuver".

"She" disappeared until reappearing decades later on the O'Reilly Factor wearing lipstick and a blond hairpiece reportedly stolen from the estate of the late Veronica Lake.

Coulter's sexual identity has long been in dispute. However, it's not clear that the question is meaningful since alien races seldom fit into terrestrial sexual categories.

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 09:36 | 1085548 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

Substantive, thoughtful, not a vindictive evaluation at all ...


Tue, 03/22/2011 - 13:45 | 1086382 SilverTech
SilverTech's picture

Well, what can you say about the interview? She spouts off about some research that she says exists, without giving any details for anybody to check her facts. She oversimplifies the dangers of radiation to the point that her words are meaningless but sound like they are based in fact.

Radiation is good for you. Yes, that's true. For example people need UV radiation to produce vitamin D. That doesn't mean that radioactive iodine or cesium is good for you. It doesn't mean that plutonium is good for you. She's might as well be an alien considering the relevance of her "facts" to human health.

You gotta admit, she does look like the Corbomite alien wearing a blond wig. Her personality is similar too. Or do you think I'm being cruel to poor little Ann when she's so sweet?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:56 | 1083845 assumptionblindness
assumptionblindness's picture

Good point, Lizzy.

I wonder how many of those destroyed homes are located within 50-miles of the damaged nuclear power plant.  Who is going to want to rebuild in those areas?  Who is going to want to live there?  Maybe the analysts failed to notice that the Japanese people are just slightly terrified of radiation-related health risks.  Jeezus....

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:36 | 1083760 chump666
chump666's picture

yep...200 point drop on the dow once a the full meltdown takes place.  the dumbest sucker rally to date.  the whole market is trading the nuclear risk on/off.

It's all about Japan at the moment.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 22:19 | 1084479 PeterSchump
PeterSchump's picture

No, the DOW will drop 210 on a meltdown........minimum.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:42 | 1083773 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

So much for Operation Extension Cord solving this mess.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:15 | 1083809 Threeggg
Threeggg's picture

I predict a ramp on stocks as the pieces of this new pump are detailed and assembled...........

There will be news flashed "daily" about each component being added until full assembly. (a Faux News anchor will be at the assembly plant with updates every 15 minutes, only when the market is open for trading)

Then the shipping process ramp.........................

Biting your nails yet ?

Then the installation ramp-up, then the extension cord hook-up ramp and then........... Ahhhhh  fuck it  !!!


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:36 | 1084038 chump666
chump666's picture

market lost the plot on this relief rally.  once some independent news crew starts measuring radioactivity and everyone realizes that a partial to full meltdown is taking place everything will sell. 10 to 20 % drop...then maybe a dip buy. only if they stupid Japanese government decided to encase the whole thing in concrete.  which is inevitable.

I am buying on a lower  sell off, the dow hitting 12000 was laughable.

but then you have oil going up...and maybe a nut in Libya lightning up an oil feild.  volatility trades 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:11 | 1083917 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

So much for Operation Extension Cord solving this mess.


Operation Extend & Pretend

Operation Hopium Rod

Operation Cesium Seasoning

Operation Glowing in the Wind

Operation Hot Rain

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:25 | 1083993 PhattyBuoy
PhattyBuoy's picture

+ Cesium Seasoning ... is that mesquite flavored.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:45 | 1083794 Piranhanoia
Piranhanoia's picture

As we watch and are amazed that the tectonic shift has been so complete that at least there are no severe aftershocks.  Hope some brilliant group is acting to close the leaks? No, not quite yet.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:46 | 1083802 assumptionblindness
assumptionblindness's picture

Don't eat the spinach - check

Don't drink the milk - check

Don't eat the fish - check

Re-route power usage (blackouts) from millions of residents to be used by big industry - check

Prevent bank runs by claiming that ATMs aren't working - check

Pump hunderds of billions of dollars into stock and currency markets to avert a spectacular cliff dives - check

Repeatedly talk about 'stability', 'power to be connected soon', and other 'progress' related jargon - check

Pump concrete into damaged reactor buildings while waiting for water pump repairs - check - WHOA?!  WTF!? 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:47 | 1083808 PhattyBuoy
PhattyBuoy's picture

"I would say optimistically that things appear to be on the verge of stabilizing," said Bill Borchardt, the NRC's executive director for operations."

Wow ... beyond criminal.

#2 & #3 are in run-away meltdown ... if there is core collapse through control rod structure, into the bottom head (i.e. core has melted into the bottom of containment bulb), the water pump is irrelevant, and this goose is cooked.

I do not believe anyone on the planet has a fix for this.




Mon, 03/21/2011 - 23:46 | 1084749 RichardP
RichardP's picture

But - if you were in charge, would you try at all to fix things?  Or would you take your worker-bees and walk away?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:47 | 1083811 Screwloose
Screwloose's picture

I'm still waiting for TEPCO to come up with a plausible explanation for the sudden loss of reactor vessel pressure on reactor 2.

When the internal pressure drops from 300kPa to 076 kPa [less than atmospheric] then something very unusual has happened.  An "internal hydrogen explosion that cracked the torus" is so facile it's ludicrous.

Any explosion that raised the internal pressure sufficiently to exceed the elastic-failure point of the - inches thick - steel torus would have resulted in a pressure blast that would have lifted the whole building off the ground - yet unit 2 is the only undamaged building of the front four.

My working hypothesis is that the base of reactor 2 was penetrated by its molten fuel - the sudden 3 bar pressure release would have been quite impressive and was probably the reported "explosion."

The burning fuel may well have been expelled with such force that it was spray-dispersed all over the drywell.  If so; it is safely contained in the flooded containment building and, apart from collecting some dirty steam emissions, is very likely to be left there permanently.

Attaching AC power now is like the firemen getting their hose working - just after your blazing house has collapsed in a heap.



Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:05 | 1084169 davepowers
davepowers's picture

that sounds great, relatively speaking

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 22:10 | 1084431 Convolved Man
Convolved Man's picture

Seal up reactor 2 containment building?!!!

Ahhh, man.  They've got the makings of a real-life BioShock game arena.  Laser tag and paint ball gun arenas will be nothing compared to a BioShock arena.

Check it out, live ammunition against radioactive zombies, mutated slithery sea shore creatures, rats and spiders the size of dire wolves.

It will be epic.


Of course, you will have to sign a release form.

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 00:11 | 1084810 patb
patb's picture

I'm with you. 


Reactor 2 had an internal event in Primary containment that blew the stink out of it

Maybe the pumps are working but, there is nothing for them to pump to.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:53 | 1083834 Life of Illusion
Life of Illusion's picture


Seal it up,,,no way cost to high for these corp /gov  of Japan.

Michio Kaku told them what to do a last week.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:54 | 1083838 Mesquite
Mesquite's picture


A nuke station design without

secondary and tertiary backup

cooling systems..??

The achilles heel of any nuke g/s..

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:50 | 1084074 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

WTF.. A nuke station design without

secondary and tertiary backup

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

That's your Leave it to Beaver / The Cleavers 1950's era design philosophy for ya ...




Tue, 03/22/2011 - 01:46 | 1085032 trav7777
trav7777's picture

WTF were they supposed to do?

Japan is in blackouts due to this.

Germany is decommissioning all older BWRs as a result.  Where is the fucking electricity supposed to come from...Libya?

going to be some "Hudson" moments "WTF do we do now? We're SCREWED; game over man, game over"

People are acting as if all this stuff was somehow optional.  I'm sure when they put this plant together that nobody actually seriously envisioned it running for 40 years and having every last fuel rod sitting up in the temporary pond.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:57 | 1083852 themosmitsos
themosmitsos's picture

I'm very sad at ... what I'm reading, cuz I very much want to see and hear somethingg different, but


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:59 | 1083864 disabledvet
disabledvet's picture

In the time of chimpanzees I was monkey/Butane in my veins so i'm out to get the junkie/with the plastic eyeballs spraypaint the vegetables/dogfood stalls with the beefcake pantyhose/kill the headlights and put it in neutral/  stockcar flaming with a loser in the cruise control

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:35 | 1084295 Coldfire
Coldfire's picture


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 19:59 | 1083868 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

I thought we were done talking about Fukushima?! WTF?! Get with the program Tyler.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:15 | 1083940 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

While I am honored at my first 'junk' but was I junked because I didn't have sarcasm/on?! Surely that was obvious sarcasm.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:30 | 1084013 cosmictrainwreck
cosmictrainwreck's picture

your tone was insubordinate; Tyler is revered [junk wasn't me]

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:55 | 1084132 Worker Bee
Worker Bee's picture

You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake.  You are the same decaying organic matter as everyone else, and we are all part of the same compost pile.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:18 | 1083872 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

This isn't possible.

A really suave MIT Professor wrote a (canned) letter, in an act of compassion, in order to calm someone's parents in Japan (fraud), which somehow got distributed all over the web (scam), whereby he swore that "[h]e was not worried about Fukushima Daiichi, and neither should any of us be."

He just so happened to NOT be a professor in the hard sciences, but the pseudo-science of marketing, etc., and he also just so happened to work for Siemens and have ties to the nuclear industry.

But then along came Dr. Monreal, a nuclear physicist, who also said there was little to fret about, he also being affiliated with MIT (an alum), and having won a 900k+ award from the U.S. Department of Energy a while back.

So you see, people with degrees and who graduated from or teach at MIT claim all is well.

So don't fret.

Options are few to prevent Japan nuclear catastrophe


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:50 | 1084108 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

So don't fret.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Let us know when it's time to BOHICA ...

Tue, 03/22/2011 - 00:00 | 1084785 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture





Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:01 | 1083883 jtmo3
jtmo3's picture

Who cares. Buy stocks!!!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:03 | 1083884 Whoa Dammit
Whoa Dammit's picture

Next Up: Weeks from now, TEPCO will admit that some of the parts they ordered for their 40 year old facilities are no longer being made by anyone in today's global manufacturing/JIT inventory world. 

And I can't help but wonder exactly how long it would have taken TEPCO to run their useless miracle power line the required 1.5 kilometers to the plant if TEPCO was not supposed to be a power company and therefore should have had the power line materials on hand?


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:20 | 1083963 Screwloose
Screwloose's picture

Seeing as they could just leave a 3-line feed lying on the surface:

15 drums of 95mm steel-wire armoured; a dozen epoxy jointing packs; 10 well-equipped line crews - about three hours going well.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:59 | 1084399 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

When the pump arrives in a week or so then they will take a week to install it then they will figure out that the pipes are broken. Around and around. They can't fix this. Spicoli has a better chance than they:

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:05 | 1083889 bmusic
bmusic's picture

Buy the dip!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:06 | 1083893 Yes We Can. But...
Yes We Can. But Lets Not.'s picture

Pump repairs?

Hey Culligan Man.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:12 | 1083921 Judge Judy Scheinlok
Judge Judy Scheinlok's picture

So, does errbody still think those thermal images are true? LoL....

On another note. Didn't they buy the extended warranty from GE? Immelt youmelt we all melt when coremelt.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:51 | 1084119 Judge Judy Scheinlok
Judge Judy Scheinlok's picture

Come on junkers, you've got to admit that was unusually clever for Judge Judy.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:05 | 1084172 penisouraus erecti
penisouraus erecti's picture

good one!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:17 | 1083953 bmusic
bmusic's picture

Nikkei up over 2%.  Un-fricken-real!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:35 | 1084036 bmusic
bmusic's picture

Make that 3%!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:57 | 1084137 disabledvet
disabledvet's picture

well!  i can hardly wait for our nuclear meltdown!

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:53 | 1084123 cosmictrainwreck
cosmictrainwreck's picture

US futures turning pink..momentarily, at least

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:18 | 1083957 Plumplechook
Plumplechook's picture
Good readers comment here I am re-posting from the NYT (thanks to Old Curmudgeon, Akron, OH):

"It is depressing to read all these well-written (and sometimes even erudite) comments doing nothing but reinforcing pre-conceived political positions for lack of the faintest knowledge of facts and the faintest understanding of their significance. This comment thread is convincing empirical evidence of the fact that humans beings think by exciting their prejudices first and rationalizing later.

Here are the most salient facts of this sad situation, from which I hope the conclusions are obvious:

1. The situation is far from under control. There are twelve trouble spots: six reactors and six spent-fuel pools. All will remain dangerously radioactive for centuries, whether operating or not, whether shut down or not, whether damaged or not, and whether abandoned or not. Radioactivity doesn't care whether a plant is running, let alone meeting design criteria. The salient task is containing radioactivity.

2. So far only five or six of these trouble spots have been stabilized, namely, the reactors and spent-fuel pools for Numbers 4, 5, and 6, which were never in serious trouble to begin with. The reactors and/or spent-fuel pools for Numbers 1, 2 and 3 are still in trouble. In the case of Numbers 1 and 2, we don't even know what's going on because the control room, which is heavily shielded and supposed to be safe, has no air conditioning and is presumed too radioactive to inhabit.

3. Every one of these twelve trouble spots is DESIGNED to require continuous cooling to stay safe, whether operating or "shut down," whether attended or abandoned.

4. The "concrete sarcophagus" solution of Chernobyl is a last resort, not a preferred solution. The reason: concrete is porous and cracks, especially in climates like Northern Japan's, where water has been known to freeze. Over years and decades---let alone the centuries of radioactivity---water passing through broken concrete puts dangerously radioactive elements in the surrounding environment, including the water table. Concrete just impedes further access in the event of follow-on disasters, such as a total meltdown.

5. It is possible to design nuclear power plants that have none of these drawbacks. Even some current designs (for example, French ones) have few or none.

These are the facts. I leave readers to draw their own conclusions, in accordance with their own prejudices.

But I can't resist drawing one obvious intermediate conclusion. There is no "fix and forget" solution to this crisis. Whether on or off, damaged or fixed, generating power or not, abandoned or not, these obsolete reactors and their spent-fuel pools will remain dangerous for centuries unless continually cooled with careful attention, or unless properly decommissioned at considerable expense. Those reactors and pools not decommissioned but "off line" will be sinks, not sources, of electric power for the foreseeable future.

I leave it to readers to consider the wisdom of keeping about twenty plants of this same obsolete design running here in our own country."

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:30 | 1084017 PhattyBuoy
PhattyBuoy's picture

OK - please tell me what are you going to place (build) under #3 to keep it from tunneling into the water table ...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:58 | 1084133 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

OK - please tell me what are you going to place (build) under #3 to keep it from tunneling into the water table ...

- - - - - - - - - - -

Seems to me they are into rock there at the coast ... no?




Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:05 | 1084177 Matte_Black
Matte_Black's picture

Um. No offense, and it's clear to me that you have probably forgotten more than I'll ever know about these things, but you should reread what he said.

To sum it up:

1. The concrete sarcophagus idea is very problematic and not a desireable solution.

2. There are no real fixes to the problem at all in fact.

3. And if you read between the lines: The only thing that could possibly be more fucked is what will happen if we don't do something about those plants in the US that are of the similar design and are situated in similarly flawed locations. 

4. A little deeper between the lines: We won't, and we're fucked.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:10 | 1084192 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

Concrete could work. The formulation would matter. A powderized lead and lead aggregate would be ideal.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:30 | 1084276 Matte_Black
Matte_Black's picture

Lead melts around 300 degrees or so.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 23:08 | 1084661 Rusty Shorts
Rusty Shorts's picture

 ... and vaporizes at ...shit, I forgot.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 23:23 | 1084698 cosmictrainwreck
cosmictrainwreck's picture

c'mon, maaan.... you forgot the boiling point of lead?? WTF

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:46 | 1084093 Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

I recall there are seven spent fuel pools, one for each reactor plus a large common seventh pool. I recall reading the power to plant has allowed cooling pumps to start again at reactors 5 and 6, but it would have been nice if they were clear on the status of the 7th, common pool.

Also, if the cooling systems for the spent fuel pools allowed the water to boil off and the rods to heat/over heat, why did this not happen at the 5th, 6th and 7th pools? Power was lost to the entire facility but I do not recall a status update on those three pools.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:27 | 1084251 SteveOoooo
SteveOoooo's picture

Reactors 5 and 6 were shut down.  The fuel had already been out of reactor and cooling off when this happened, sp they started off much cooler than elsewhere?  Cooler = less boiling, less water loss.

7 was used only after spent fuel had already been well cooled in the "short-term" pools next to the reactors, so there was less chance of boiling off all of the water there too.  It was coolest there to start with...


Air + hot fuel rods = bad.


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:41 | 1084311 Screwloose
Screwloose's picture

One of the 14 on-site diesel back-up generators - on reactor 6 - was salvageable and has been running the cooling pumps since about Monday - and feeding reactor 5 too.

NISA's water temp figures for reactors 5 & 6; their spent fuel pools - and the common pool - are now reported to be down to safe values, which would be 25C [77F] or so.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:55 | 1084125 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

I think your paragraph #2 contradicts your paragraph #1,  to wit:


1) The situation is far from under control. There are twelve trouble spots:

2) So far only five or six of these trouble spots have been stabilized,


Six down, six to go ...







Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:26 | 1084001 waterdog
waterdog's picture

"An emergency order has been placed for pumps", how polite.  I wonder whose purchase order number will go with the order?

How about a damn demand for pumps? Not warm and fuzzy enough for today's crowd?


Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:31 | 1084021 Convolved Man
Convolved Man's picture

... as all those behind operation Extension Cord finally realize there is nothing to connect the power to.

Well, the vending machines in the break room and the hallway emergency exit signs may work now.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:41 | 1084065 strenue
strenue's picture

oooh, do they have skittles?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:44 | 1084329 Screwloose
Screwloose's picture


Don't underestimate the importance of getting the coffee machine working in such situations - it used to be my first priority...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:40 | 1084053 Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

The TEPCO "power cord" is equivalent to the BP "junk shot" in that both are known not to be the solution, but to buy time until a solution can be thought up and implemented. We will see many failed attempts at control to keep the masses occupied while radiation spews forth.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:22 | 1084235 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

by Money Squid, on Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:40 #1084053 

The TEPCO "power cord" is equivalent to the BP "junk shot"

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Sure is - who needs stinking 60 Hz 3 Phase 480 Volts AC for pump motors, valving and instrumentation anyway ...

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:40 | 1084060 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

NEWS on Kyoto wire. Steam or smoke rising from reactor 2 again.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:55 | 1084128 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

Reactor 3 hazy smoke too. Minutes later.

Water spraying and electric work on hold.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:59 | 1084157 Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

I'm waiting for TEPCO to spray water on the new power cord.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:10 | 1084189 chump666
chump666's picture

huge sucker rally about to get slammed south...very small reports coming in, some twitter....

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:13 | 1084196 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

Care to share the twitter feeds?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:45 | 1084099 Worker Bee
Worker Bee's picture

For thousands of years, human beings had screwed up and trashed and crapped on this planet, and now history expected me to clean up after everyone.  I have to wash out and flatten my soup cans.  And account for every drop of used motor oil.  And I have to foot the bill for nuclear waste and buried gasoline tanks and landfilled toxic sludge dumped a generation before I was born.  ~Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club, Chapter 16

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 20:48 | 1084112 Herman Strandsc...
Herman Strandschnecke's picture

 The bloke who invented and built the first Geiger counter was pretty clever, eh? Where do you start.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:15 | 1084127 reader2010
Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:03 | 1084165 disabledvet
disabledvet's picture

What does concrete do when it is super-heated exactly?

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:11 | 1084188 pitz
pitz's picture

decomposes into carbon dioxide.  and silicon. 

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:12 | 1084191 Herman Strandsc...
Herman Strandschnecke's picture

 I think everything has a melting point and concrete is still organic.

Mon, 03/21/2011 - 21:14 | 1084200 Matte_Black
Matte_Black's picture

It cracks, and if you keep on going it smolders and burns.

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