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Fukushima Radiation Literally Off The Charts

Tyler Durden's picture


And so with each passing day the veil of lies at Fukushima is being lifted. For all those who had been scratching their heads how it is possible that Fukushima would have a (very high to begin with) radiation level in the millisieverts if indeed the plant had experienced a Chernobyl style meltdown and "inadvertent recriticality", when it should have been far higher, here is your answer. According to NHK, "a radiation monitor at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says workers there are exposed to immeasurable levels of radiation." Unfortunately for the workers present, the monitor is not being metaphoric: "The monitor told NHK that no one can enter the plant's No. 1 through 3 reactor buildings because radiation levels are so high that monitoring devices have been rendered useless. He said even levels outside the buildings exceed 100 millisieverts in some places." Perhaps it is time for the discredited Japanese government to form a committee to investigate whether TEPCO, with or without the complicity of the NHK, was counterfeiting radiation reading over the past month, and thus sacrificing the lives of the 50 brave TEPCO workers who are committing an act of suicide by continuing to stay at the plant. Who knows: maybe they would have a different opinion if they actually knew their presence there is a guaranteed death sentence.

From NHK:

Pools and streams of water contaminated by high-level radiation are being found throughout the facility.

The monitor said he takes measurements as soon as he finds water, because he can't determine whether it's contaminated just by looking at it. He said he's very worried about the safety of workers there.

Contaminated water and efforts to remove it have been hampering much-needed work to cool the reactors.

The monitor expressed frustration, likening the situation to looking up a mountain that one has to climb, without having taken a step up.

At this point we are growing increasingly more confident that soon we will see a tipping point among the so far very peaceful and complacent population, which will result in unrest and possibly worse, demanding a government that will stop sacrificing people's lives to the "greater good" of market stability.


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Tue, 04/05/2011 - 09:56 | 1136492 Bicycle Repairman
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I guess we now all understand that if the cost of disaster remediation was priced in, nuclear reactors would never be built in the first place.  Talk about kicking the can or rolling the dice.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:04 | 1136539 brian downunder
brian downunder's picture

Is there any chance they could restart the old Mitsubishi plant and attack from above with some zero fighters (Mitsubishi A6M Zero)...

...I believe the half life of these planes was sufficient to allow them to get very close to the reactors.


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:12 | 1136562 robobbob
robobbob's picture

now according to my trusty NBC warfare guide (circa cold war), you can withstand up to 200millisieverts without harm, and about 400 for short periods of time.

 Of course by the term "you" I really do mean not me. There is no way in hell I would get near that thing.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:16 | 1136572 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Everyone keeps asking where the leadership is.

I question how many of the more skilled/experienced workers got out alive to be honest.

TEPCO keeps saying they got out ok but then again...this is TEPCO.

Typically a full parking lot is indicative of...

A lot of the leadership might be dead.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:26 | 1136612 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

I think it is reasonable to assume that all plant personnel on site when the accident began are now dead.  The number of dead workers far exceeds that being reported (2?, 3?). And if I was a Fukushima worker who was not at the plant that day, I'd still be in hiding.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:26 | 1136622 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

I was wondering about that too. If the people who have actually run the plant for the last 10 or 20 years are lost, there's no hope at all of getting anything working even if there are systems that haven't been blown to bits. You can't just walk into a huge industrial site and expect to have a clue what needs to be done, no matter how many engineering degrees you have.

If the key people are dead or run far away, then the set of possible solutions contains only brute force methods, or nothing.

Which is probably the case anyway, if the reactor buildings/ruins are all far too hot to enter.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:19 | 1137680 Rusty Shorts
Rusty Shorts's picture

The workers, if they survived, may have lost their homes and family members, so, going back to the facility is probably the last thing on their minds.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:14 | 1136576 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Anyone want to play "cesium roulette?".

This is a map of the fallout from Chernobyl.

Note that the poison comes down quite randomly.  Boars in Bavaria and sheep in Wales are found with unacceptable levels of cesium 25 years after the event.

I wonder what ocean currents passing through Fukushima will bring to Pacific ocean countries?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:19 | 1136589 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

"immeasurable levels of radiation."

Which, sadly, is yet more utter bullshit. Because:

* OK, so the meters they had initially peg at 1000 milli Sv. But it's not as if there's no such thing as meters that read far, far higher. So fucking get some of them you pathetic dipshits.

* Or, if you absolutely CAN'T find such things, then... the shielding factors of various thicknesses of metals (aluminium, iron, etc) are known. For instance I have a nice boxed set of precision graded thickness aluminum disks, for _exactly_ this purpose - scaling down radiation counts, and determining penetration spectra of radiation. Bought on eBay.

But really all they need to do is take one of their counters, measure a known source, enclose the detector head in a metal box, remeasure the source, derive scale factor, go measure high source, scale the reading.

And thus, they lie. AGAIN!

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:32 | 1136646 malikai
malikai's picture

Another conspiracy.

Is it a conspiracy alone, or a conspiracy to cover up incompetence?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:54 | 1136755 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

How about an incompetent conspiracy?

I don't know. All I know is there's no such thing as 'immesurable radiation level'.

Sure, there's radiation levels that you wouldn't want to personally go and measure. But that's what long poles, robots, and other tricks are for. FFS, duct tape a counter and a radio modem together with some padding, and lob the thing in there. Drop it on the roof from a heli. Whatever.

Even if by 'immeasurable' they mean the radiation level fries the electronics in the counters, something small like a counter is actually possible to wrap in lead plate, unlike a human worker.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:02 | 1136802 BrainShutdown
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"wrap in lead plate" and then mesure what?? your ignorance?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:26 | 1136947 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

Shield the counter electronics, not the measuring head, obviously. Unless the counter is pegging, or the measurement head saturationg in which case yes, shield the head too, by whatever amount is required. Shielding isn't a binary parameter, it merely reduces the flux, by factors determined by the radiation type and energy, shielding material and thickness, etc.


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:02 | 1136809 malikai
malikai's picture

Agreed. It stuns me to think that these folks obviously in the industry don't know to try this stuff. Didn't they watch "The battle for Chernobyl"?

Were you guys considering the workers killed by ARS or taken out by the tsunami? Wouldn't everybody get to high ground once the tsunami alarm went off (before it struck)?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:42 | 1137057 TerraHertz
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I read one 'worker story' on I think the 2nd or 3rd day. American contractor, was in the plant when earthquake hit. Had phoned his wife in USA to tell her he was OK, she relayed story to US media. He'd been in the middle of changing his boots when the quake hit, so ran in bare feet. Got his feet cut in broken glass, which slowed him down. Others got outside to cars and took off. He was still inside when the tsunami hit, and was able to get up higher than it. The hotel he was staying at was destroyed. He wasn't able to contact the guys who left before him, and thought they might have been caught by the tsunami. Sounded like he was refering to quite a few co-workers.

At that point I hadn't begun saving references, and couldn't find the story again later.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:56 | 1137172 malikai
malikai's picture

That's no good at all. 

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:20 | 1136599 aerial view
aerial view's picture

More insanity and lack of transparency from the Japanese govt and Tepco risking the lives of 1000's of people and millions of aquatic life...sad, so sad.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:23 | 1136604 Fix It Again Timmy
Fix It Again Timmy's picture

"I'm not going to read anymore of these dramatic and exciting, and utterlly delusional postings about Fukushima" - fine, what is happening there usually happens in the depths of outer space - previously, not on a little blue ball that at one time was shielded from the effects of atomic fission.  Here's your delusional posting:

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:25 | 1136608 espirit
espirit's picture

To all those who have downplayed or outright mis-represented these tragic events unfolding...

You should be held accountable for your actions... then exposed beyond threshold.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:56 | 1136781 espirit
espirit's picture

Hopefully, someone will keep track of the pro-nuke shills, sock puppets, liars, and nonsensical twits (tits?) that emanate normalcy in this horrific event.

May you be unpleasantly sterilized.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:36 | 1137159 malikai
malikai's picture

Do you have a better idea for keeping the lights on and ipads charged?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:29 | 1136627 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

helicopter radiation hot spot survey, new york , 2006, found that the israeli embassy in manhattan had unusually high radiation readings. interesting isn't it? why would the israeli embassy of all places have a high radiation reading? why o why?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:33 | 1136639 Wakanda
Wakanda's picture

we've become - useless

monitoring devices



Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:06 | 1137257 TomJoad
TomJoad's picture


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:31 | 1136643 Eminence Front
Eminence Front's picture

The Japanese government and TEPCO management need to read up on Seppuku.


On another more alarmist note, California has two reactors San Onofre built on the Pacific that is rated to withstand a 7.0 magnitude quake and a 25 ft tsunami and Diablo Canyon which is built right near the San Andreas fault and can withstand a 7.5 magnitude quake.


There but before the grace of God we go.  We'll get no better answers from PG&E or the US Govt if the "Big One" enver happens


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:08 | 1137278 US Uncut
US Uncut's picture

Only difference is we would not be so passive. There would be NO WAY to shut up alternative media short of shutting down the internet. (OH, THAT'S why they are trying to develop the kill switch!)

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:25 | 1137382 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Perhaps will should ask this question now:

"If an earthquake hits Diablo Canyon and it melts down, what is the plan?"

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:37 | 1136656 Bastiat
Bastiat's picture

by IQ 145
on Sat, 03/12/2011 - 23:48

No one is gambling anything; you are so far from understanding anything; it's just amazing. The very small quantities of radioactive gases released were released deliberately; there is no on-going problem; none, whatsoever. It's too bad the operators were so paranoid about meaningless releases of gases into the atmoshere, that they allowed an explosive mixture of hydrogen and air to exist in the building; this will cost the power company some bucks; it means nothing for public health

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:38 | 1136664 antisoshal
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FFor everyone who is declaring this hype and no big deal, here's a couple of numbers to keep things in a bit more realistic perspective:

Water found on site in vaults outside the reactor buildings has been measured at 5.4 million Becquerel per cubic centimeter. The sources of the water have not been "identified". That's 5.4 Billion Bq per liter. Currently the estimate is 7 tons of water of an undetermined contamination is escaping to the sea PER hour. Assuming these are metric tonnes, that's 7x1000x5.4 Billion Bq per hour. That's 37.8 trillion Bq per hour being released into the ocean.

This is in no uncertain terms an irrelevant amount of radiation. On a global scale it might not be much as of now, but it doesnt immediately disseminate across the entire ocean.

The most contaminated areas of Ukraine and Russia outside the plant itself after the Chernobyl accident were 4 million Bq per square meter of ground.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:55 | 1136765 Bubbles the cat (not verified)
Bubbles the cat's picture

Put that in the Kuroshio and see where it ends up.....

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:58 | 1136789 SilverRhino
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5.4 Billion Bq / liter.   If that is all Cs-137, that's 4.12 Sieverts/hour if you are in contact with it.  


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:06 | 1136826 antisoshal
antisoshal's picture

Oops. Typo. Should be "This is NOT in no uncertain terms..."

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:32 | 1138662 whoopsing
whoopsing's picture

antisoshal, a litre of water cannot fit into a 1 cubic cm. space. So your #'s grossly underestimate the problem.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:41 | 1136678 pyite
pyite's picture

Zero Hedge is losing credibility fast.  The fact that you mentioned the "50 workers" so casually shows how little you really understand what's going on.  It is 50 at a time, but I believe the total number of brave workers in the rotation is over 200.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:49 | 1136722 antisoshal
antisoshal's picture

Its actually as many as 1800 people within a couple of Kilometers. The 50 number was out a long time ago, and at any one time there are as many as 300 people working. The original 50 had to do with how many Dosimeters were available. Then they started sending people in without them in groups, and now they received another 300.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:13 | 1136866 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

No one disputes that there are large numbers of people going to the plant, doing stuff, then GTFOing. Brave of them.

What is sickening is the attempt to craft an unrealistic legend about the '50 brave workers who stay right there in the plant'.  I personally don't believe there's anyone permanently at the plant.

Oh, and the full car park? I wonder if cars taken there and parked any length of time are considered too contaminated to be taken back out? And so they kind of filled up the carpark? Extracting people via bus or something?

Or, maybe things are much, much darker than being admitted, and many people go in but don't return?

I really doubt that full carpark's worth of cars are commuting in and out.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:33 | 1137736 malikai
malikai's picture

What is sickening is the attempt to craft an unrealistic legend about the '50 brave workers who stay right there in the plant'.  I personally don't believe there's anyone permanently at the plant.

Come on. You know this was just the MSM doing their part to forge increased viewership via sensationalism. And now that things look increasingly dire, they have to switch from fear to consumption mode. We've seen this too many times.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:58 | 1136784 Bastiat
Bastiat's picture

Yeah, right:  ZH is losing all credibility over that "Fukushima 50" -- as if that is what really matters here.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:58 | 1136791 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Why is it important, whether Zero Hedge or NHK is gaining or losing credibility? Fukushima Daiichi is cordoned off. No press allowed. No workers named. No thermal images. Those of us who care have to parse disinformation and draw inferences. If you don't care or think there is anything to worry about, why are you here?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:56 | 1137814 Thorlyx
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"Fukushima Daiichi is cordoned off"


not completely. I heard there are some leaks....

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 15:13 | 1138153 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

I would gladly contribute cash to a fund for Deep Throat whistleblowers who really know what's really going on.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:47 | 1136717 Clockwork Orange
Clockwork Orange's picture


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 10:55 | 1136759 malikai
malikai's picture

How much longer until they ask the US army to consider making it a big subsistence crater?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:13 | 1137641 goldfish1
goldfish1's picture

you shills really have a hard on for the nuclear bomb solution.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:29 | 1137717 malikai
malikai's picture

Are you going to propose any solutions or are you just here seeking affirmation of your TEOTW bias?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 16:08 | 1138376 goldfish1
goldfish1's picture

Monday's sample also contained 1.1 million times the legal limit of cesium 137, which has a half life of 30 years.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 14:42 | 1138028 nonplused
nonplused's picture

Pulverizing all of the spent fuel rods plus the reactors to dust and launching it all into the stratosphere solves the problem how?


Unless the objective is to try and return the plant to the USA, of course.

"Reason for return?" 

"It's defective."

"Do you have the original packaging?"

"Ummm, about that..."

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 15:32 | 1138241 malikai
malikai's picture

Maybe they could excavate a cavern underneath the plant, support it with good solid stilts, then blow the stilts, letting the plant collapse in, with seawater to follow.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:33 | 1136981 BlackholeDivestment
BlackholeDivestment's picture

In a petaflop WASPing world of global market corruption, the guilty do not protest short term gain based on the ritual Cremation of Care. Sustaining gains requires debt and death in the New World Order global market model. 

...nothing to see here though, move along.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:37 | 1137029 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

In case you missed it the first time. Pay attention to this mans body language, it says everything. The situation is dire at best and things are spinning more and more out of control.



Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:57 | 1137186 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

Let's also not forget the mayor of Soma City in Fukushima asking for help from the world community. It appears to me that the government have abandoned these people and left them for dead. This is all truly tragic.



Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:00 | 1137209 TerraHertz
TerraHertz's picture

I did miss it, thanks for reposting. Urrrgh! Double plus ungood. Summary:

Fukushima Daiichi Reactors 5-6 Stability Under Threat 04.04.11
Structure cracked, radioactive groundwater leaking into buildings, threatens operation of generators vital to maintaining cooling of reactors & SFPs of units 5 and 6. Spokesperson on verge of tears.

So, even the ground water in vicinity of 5 & 6, up the coast a bit, is so radioactive that it presents a problem to approach and set up extraction pumps?

That's just....

The implication is that yes, at some point soon conditions at 5 & 6 will get so bad these reactors will join 1 through 4 in... in... I can't think of a suitable word.


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:10 | 1137628 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

you're welcome. This is why the other day I asked the question of the likely hood of the Daichi plants problems spilling over onto the other plant a few miles away (not reactor 5&6).

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:13 | 1137633 goldfish1
goldfish1's picture

I can't think of a suitable word.

Hell on earth?

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 19:18 | 1139028 Clycntct
Clycntct's picture

Yo TerraHertz let me help you out with the word.


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:38 | 1137031 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

Multiples of Chernobyl-scale release, ballparked three ways:


Official, Austria:

Official, France/US/Finland (cores 1-3 only, multiply by three to include pools 1-4, then possibly multipy again by 2 to account for high burnup):

You can start calling it the worst nuclear accident in history now.  This is pretty much conclusive.  No environmental organizations were harmed in the making of these estimates.

Can anyone translate the above info sources into Japanese?  Where is the ex-skf blog dude....

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:33 | 1137426 espirit
espirit's picture

Thanks Jim.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:39 | 1137472 equity_momo
equity_momo's picture

Just like to say thanks for all your data mining and analysis over the last few days Jim. Your posts are very interesting. and incredibly sobering. 

Time to open another bottle of Blantons. 

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:53 | 1137480 nonclaim
nonclaim's picture

There's a distinct difference from Chernobyl that half the area around it is open sea where the diffusion rate is orders of magnitude greater than in land, including depth. Factor in the wind pattern so far and most of the particles released to the air went to open sea. Bad, yes, but not as bad as.

Another difference is that spent fuel rods are likely scattered all over the place. At some point they will be collected... as a reference, there was a serious cesium contamination in Brazil years ago, and only a few people died. Tragic, yes, but less bad than the media makes it appear.

I usually get scolded/junked for pointing out that comparing for more/less bad then Chernobyl is pointless because they are simply too different. Give Fukushima some dignity, it is a huge problem in its own right.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:41 | 1137768 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

I don't disagree one little bit.  There are lots of ways to say an accident is bad.  I just meant the radioactive releases. 

In a cold-blooded sense the best strategy might actually be to get as much water on there as possible, to carry the cesium out to sea, and let the offshore winds take it...but then get some kind of structural containment on it by the time the winds definitively shift to onshore as they will very soon now.  And/or just keep watering and ocean dumping.  Cesium is happy to go either way.

For all we know that is the play.  Keep it the hell out of the Tokyo air/watershed by hook or by crook.  More air dispersion analysis yet to come; I have already pointed out that Chernobyl did not just up and poison the general population with acute radiation sickness.  But several months more of this with prevailing onshore winds...not pretty.  Unfortunately.

Doubt that many rods are scattered by the way, but they could be.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 14:23 | 1137937 Byte Me
Byte Me's picture

I don't want to sound alarmist, but I've yet to hear anything from Tepco or NISA about the #4 SFP fire and there was no video released except a couple of frames from the timelapsed webcam that did the rounds, and since those were hourly 'snaps' the direction of the plume changed quite a bit.

"They're" keeping mum, but from some of these distance land readings being reported it seems that quite a bit of crap escaped from #4.

Hopefully, the high-reads inland are just hotspots.

How many tons of old stuff did they have in SFP Jim.

(and you DO do great work here.)

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 15:01 | 1138104 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

We have to keep in mind that we don't know in much detail.  The imagery has been 'hit and run' from helicopters, drones, satellites and a boom truck.

The pool is the same as Units 2 and 3, and even 1, in that it's about four stories in the air.  Some of us have reported being able to see rubble/debris filling it, but personally the best shot I saw was in cross-section, the concrete body of the pool with a large beam lying directly on it.  Lots and lots of fumes coming out. 

The difference between 4 and the others is that Unit 4's core is said to be offloaded into the pool for a maintenance outage.  That increases the inventory of fuel and makes it newer, so hotter.  TEPCO has the pool 4 inventory at 1,479 assemblies, or somewhere north of 100,000 rods (there are a couple of assembly configurations, either 64 or 81 rods/assembly with similar weights in either case).

Ton-wise, at 0.127 tons uranium per assembly that's a good 185 tons give or take.  Just of uranium.  The other material is usually estimated/scaled off the uranium.

Other than that all the pools are in more or less the same condition as far as we know, which isn't saying much, but the assumption is that the rods are being covered, uncovered from leaks or boiling off, and covered again.  So on-again off-again air vs. water emissions of fission products--iodine, cesium, strontium.

Maybe they are all covered nicely and staying cool day by day.  But the vigor of the steam/vapor when we see any new video suggests otherwise.

Wed, 04/06/2011 - 04:16 | 1139985 Byte Me
Byte Me's picture


Thanks for that Jim, I had been digging around Tepco for 'info' during the last month or so but the specmanship, obfuscation etc., doesn't make for easy research although there does seem to be an improvement of late, including the level of detail:

Docs 110405e30 to 37 were on a different level of informativeness -- could be the new broom sweeping.

One tiny factoid that I gleaned 3 weeks ago concerns the 64 rod assemblies; the innermost 4 rods do not exist and are replaced by a water cooling channel down the middle (unsure if similar provision is made on the 9x9 assemblies but they may 'only' contain 77 rods). All this is probably a trade off between cooling, and neutron economy from a design perspective, but what would I know.

So I'm sure we're all relieved to learn of fewer rods etc., but the voids  'could' act as a chimney in a fire - no telling on that and I hope that didn't happen.

#4 was 'Down for routine maintainence' and flyby stuff indicated a large yellow dome to one side under what remained of the girder roof assembly. Question then remains -- at what point in the recharging cycle were Tepco at? Were fresh SFRs newly in the pool, was new inventory in the pool? (not that that's too important).

Thanks for the figures Jim, with rough fission product data on SFRs it's a snap to estimate releases in curies (or moles) on hypothesised losses.

My teeth are aching just thinking about the ramifications...

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:53 | 1137540 Byte Me
Byte Me's picture

Probably taking some much deserved shuteye..

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:46 | 1137098 US Uncut
US Uncut's picture


5 & 6 Farked. Watch TEPCO employee cry.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 11:55 | 1137161 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

Look up two posts and then earlier on in the discussion.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:06 | 1137607 Byte Me
Byte Me's picture


Sorry, but I have no time for this "We so sorry" tearry bowing BS. They have known from DAY ONE that it was all snafu'd to hell but they:





and lied some more.

If this one is 'sorry' he can get down there and help the F1-50.


Memo to TEPCO: Get the fracking SFRs out of 5,6 and the common pool before the whole place becomes unapproachable and you lose these three TOO.


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:12 | 1137293 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

Fishermen at emergency meeting being informed of radioactive water dumping

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:07 | 1137614 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

Just sad.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:14 | 1137304 Jim in MN
Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:23 | 1137370 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

Oh now here's a real gem:

'price 40 cents' on the a comic book

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:08 | 1137621 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

BTW Jim thank you so much for your time in posting your continued analysis of the situation and your dilligence in remaining objective. Truly an asset to this community.



Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:49 | 1137789 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

Thanks.  In a country that prepped for thermonuclear war for generations, it's madness indeed that folks seem to care more for appearances than for facts.  Just trying to frame the problem.  No skin off my nose where the numbers end up. 

I hope the dispersion makes it 'mostly harmless' even now.  Don't know...yet.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 14:16 | 1137912 Sweet Chicken
Sweet Chicken's picture

Yes it is truly sickening.

I can assure you many posters and lurkers on Zero pay attention to your posts.  Again thank you.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:13 | 1138606 Aristarchan
Aristarchan's picture


I have been working with a friend of mine to try to establish some numbers on fuel loads/spent fuel/aging and so on to come to some kind of conclusion on the amounts of contaminants that may have been released to date. We simply can not come up with anything that approaches a reasonably accurate estimation. For one, nobody knows how much the fuel assemblies in each reactor have become uncovered, I have heard possibly 70% on one reactor, and anywhere from 20% to 40% on the others. As you know, this is a critical element of determining fuel damage.

Second, even if the uncovering where known, accurate temperatures in the vessels is a must, and there is no accurate data we could find on units 1,2 and 3.

Third, the frequency and duration of the venting cycles, and the pressures existing during the venting cycles, and, the state of uncovering of the rods previous the cycles is not available (I could not find it).

Finally, how much of the emitted contaminants were released in the air, and how much may have been released in liquid form. Don't know.

Right now I am going through the NRC documents where export approval was sought for the Fukushima unit's refueling. The amount of Uranium Oxide shipped for each reactor does not jibe with what I have been led to believe is the actual fuel loading, and the percentage that is typically cycled out during a normal refuel.

A lot of the same data above is lacking for the spent fuel pools as well....particularly uncovering, temperatures, dry duration, etc.

So, I see no way of coming up with anything but a wild guess.

On another note: My friend pointed to data that showed that I may have been incorrect in assuming transient criticality is still going on. One, the detection of Tellurium-129. Tellurium has a half-life of 69 minutes, but, it also exists as tellurium-129M...the "M" standing for metastable, which has a half-life of about 34 days before transforming into lower energy tellurium-129. So, this material would still be around for that length of time - left over from normal reactor operation. (It also appears now that Tepco is backing off their detection of Tellurium).

Also, he states that the detection of Iodine-131 (half life 8 days) is also not proof of any form of re-criticality, since one would expect about 10% of it to be left after 20 days.

Just some more info to think about.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:58 | 1138775 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture


This thread's getting pretty old, might want to repost when a new one comes.  No doubt we don't know the profiles of the cores and pools.  To your set of uncertainties add burnup, and uncertainty even about Chernobyl itself in terms of comparisons.  They can't even enter the buildings, so you know, it'd be nice to know if core/pool structures are intact etc.  But we have to try, and keep improving.

All that stuff I worked through was ultimately to calibrate against the Austrians estimate which was in turn coming from measured radioactivity--a 'source term' estimate.  They include an order of magnitude uncertainty for cesium (although not for iodine where they have a narrower range).  To say that their estimate would only take 12 kg or less per day, just takes basic calculations.  So there's that....

Last night I ran across the French IRSN estimate, was quite surprised to see US NRC as consulting on that.  They have their assessment but don't say too much about the details.  But they are clear that they're only looking at cores 1, 2 and 3.  So there's that too.

Having a set of 'semi-wild guesses' land in the same quantitative space is probably not a coincidence in this case.  But yes, we don't know and I wish governments and others would make with the better modeling.  Not sitting on my hands here either :^)

Hoping a LOT of cesium is going into water now, as the winds are less favorable.  Strange they are no longer discussing water-in ops at all, just water-out or water-WTF?!? ops.  I hope they are OK.  Last report was they reduced the Unit 2 watering and the temp jumped 20 degrees on them.  Or maybe it was Unit 1. 

Thanks for your patience with me during all this.  Or to put it another way, I hope you know that I value your input highly. 

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 18:08 | 1138814 Aristarchan
Aristarchan's picture

Yeah, there are a lot of issues to consider. It appears that reactor 5 and 6 are not issues, nor is a core for reactor 4, but the spent fuel pool in 4 has to be considered. Our efforts are only looking at 1,2 and 3, since they seem to be the ones in play. One of the reactors were scheduled for a refuel right about now, so that burn-up is important. I am also assuming they use typical burn-up cycles. There is a wealth of data on the Fukushima plants in the NRC documents, including all the fuel shippings, which show the percentage of oxide of total shipping weight, etc. The problem is wading through all the FIA requests from every environmental outfit and atom-chasing lawyer in the world.:)

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 20:17 | 1139226 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Gentlemen, you are doing work that no official agency has undertaken, to compare and integrate various sets of reports, some of which are pretty heavily massaged for "typos" and none of which can claim accuracy because at least some pressure vessel indicators are kaput. I don't trust temp readings from SFPs buried in wreckage.

Any light you can shed is deeply appreciated.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 16:01 | 1138358 davepowers
davepowers's picture

wow, you're smokin' Jim

keep up the great work

ps... some of Jim's analysis is posted below by one of the regular posters here... thanks

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:26 | 1137379 Laddie
Laddie's picture

March 12th Obama should have DEMANDED that the reactors were entombed Chernobyl style.

He didn't he went off to Brazil and started a war with Libya.

The consequences of letting the situation deteriorate in those crucial first hours have yet to be seen, but will be tragic.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 12:35 | 1137423 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Not excusing Obama's complete lack of action, but has any leader spoken out on this.  Outside of Merkel, I see nothing.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:28 | 1137707 malikai
malikai's picture

...and Merkel was just trying to save her already lost government.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:09 | 1137625 djsmps
djsmps's picture
Japan defends radioactive water disposal, vows to fully inform world

TOKYO, April 5, Kyodo

Japan defended Tuesday its dumping of a massive mount of low-level radioactive water from the crisis-hit Fukushima nuclear plant, saying the action does not violate international laws, and pledged to fully inform the international community of Tokyo's steps to tackle the ongoing emergency.

Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto said at a press conference that Tokyo had briefed diplomatic corps in Japan on the start of radioactive water disposal hours before the plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co. began releasing the liquid into the Pacific Ocean on Monday evening.

South Korea has aired concern over the radioactive water release as a neighboring country and said Tuesday that Seoul will ask Tokyo to allow it to conduct on-the-spot radiation tests for seawater contamination if necessary.

Boris Preobrazhensky of the Russian Academy of Sciences, a researcher based in Vladivostok, also criticized the dumping of radioactive water, saying it could adversely affect migratory fish in the western Pacific as well as the Russian fishery industry.

Hidehiko Nishiyama, a spokesman for Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, expressed regret over triggering concerns among neighboring countries.

''We feel very sorry for causing anxiety among our neighbors. We could not help but resort to the measure, but we will provide full explanations from now on,'' he said at a news conference.

The foreign minister stressed that the discharge poses ''no significant health threats'' to human bodies, but said Tokyo will explain to other countries about the background of measures taken at the Fukushima plant, where the nation's worst nuclear crisis is unfolding following the March 11 massive earthquake and tsunami.

They must have raised the allowed dosage limit again.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:57 | 1137824 PulauHantu29
PulauHantu29's picture

Yeah, if I lived on China's Easy Coast I'd be packing and heading West....far West.

If the wind changes direction---from blowing eastward to blowing westward---you're gonn ahave a few hundred million Chinese scrambling....not a pretty sight.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 14:02 | 1137850 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Full explanations from now on. Achoo.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 14:58 | 1138083 Homey Da Clown
Homey Da Clown's picture

WWIII bitches. Japan just pissed off 1 billion Chinese, a few hundred million Russians, and the rest of the world,except the US of course.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 15:13 | 1138157 BlackholeDivestment
BlackholeDivestment's picture

Russia complaining about dumping death into our ocean water, yeeeah riiight. That's on par with the Skull and Bone heads complaining about not being able to eat Gulf Stuxnet Oysters at their favorite New Orleans strip club because of an Anglo Iranian oil slick.

''no significant health threats'' What!!! ... just because you are too sick to lift the Hara Kiri blade to end your shame for being part of a power company and society that built a death trap on sand by the sea shore in a quake zone? ...that does not mean there's no significant health threat to human bodies Nuke San. Corruption and strong delusion give rise to the stench of ''Irradiated Rational'', a new punk band for Tokyo.

On stage at the wax museum in Tokyo Tower, it's those glowing, soon to be dead ringers for museum revenue, those crazy punks from F'd Up Shima. The band claimed to be inspired by the Blue Oyster Cult.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 13:52 | 1137801 PulauHantu29
PulauHantu29's picture

Please hand them a hari kari blade....very dull so it hurts. This oculd be the slwo death of the world.....odorless...silent like little cat feet....crawling in all directions...slow death.

Hey! I better stop now...I'm scaring even Myself!

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 14:33 | 1137995 miker
miker's picture

Actually, Zero Hedge is about the only source that has gotten this disaster right. 

I have 25 years in nuclear power engineering.  This disaster is pretty much the worst case scenaro X 4.  Looking back, as soon as I saw the first hydrogen explosion, I knew it was going to be bad.  The hydrogen explosion at #3 was much worse and that one had to have breached containment.

The Japanese response to this all along has been amatuerish with very poor communication.  In their defense though, it's not like this was the only thing going on. 

I think the appropriate title is Kamikaze Nuclear Workers.  They are the "divine wind" that will save the country.  To be sure, many are going to die.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 15:13 | 1138165 MSimon
MSimon's picture

This former Naval Nuke concurs.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 16:19 | 1138416 avonaltendorf
avonaltendorf's picture

Thank you, Mike.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 14:46 | 1138045 Die Weiße Rose
Die Weiße Rose's picture

This is very sad -

TEPCO and the Japanese Government's cover-up of the scale of this Nuclear Disaster

is dangerous and deceitful and a serious crime against all humanity !

I am convinced that Fukushima is going to be a greater

and also a far more serious disaster than even Chernobyl .

Just look at the Google Map of Japan -

Near Fukushima the Island is only 150km wide so if you decommission these Nuclear Reactors in Fukushima, there will be an exclusion zone that will be a contaminated for decades, and therefore Japan is virtually cut in half. Look at the map of Japan.

This is much worse than Chernobyl, because where do 128 million Japanese People

live with such a vast area contaminated for decades ?

This is why TEPCO and the Japanese Government are covering this up.

This is the biggest Nuclear Disaster ever and most Japanese people know this already,

but they are still too deeply traumatised from the March 11 mag 9 quake and Tsunami,to really be able to respond and worry about radiation they can not yet really deal with.

The Nuclear Industry is in collusion world-wide to cover this up, because there are billions at stake,because it costs billions to de-commission Nuclear Reactors.So world-wide the Nuclear Industry has gone into total damage control ,that includes Germany,France and the USA because they told this big Lie to the world: that Nuclear Power is green and safe and can help reduce "global warming" or climate change or carbon -dioxide emmission.

Instead Nuclear Power is the most toxic element and substance known to man-kind and toxic waste renders huge parts of the contaminated landscape unfit for any life over decades, even centuries.

There are more than 2,500 tons of Uranium and Plutonium in Fukushima, a gigantic radioactive inventory, at least 20 times as much as there was at Chernobyl.

By Tuesday 22 March 2011 - only 11 days after the earth-quake and tsunami -the Fukushima nuclear plant had already released into the environment one-tenth of all the amount of radioactive material - that was released at Chernobyl in 1986 -


The crisis at the Fukushima nuclear power plant is still a long way from being over.

With high levels of radiation still escaping from the damaged reactors, we sat down with Professor Wim Turkenburg and asked him some of the questions we've been hearing from our supporters.

Professor Turkenburg is an atomic and molecular physicist, and head of the department of Science, Technology and Society at the Utrecht University in the Netherlands.


How Dangerous Is Japan's Creeping Nuclear Disaster?,1518,753530,00.html


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 15:24 | 1138214 chris_gee
chris_gee's picture

Contamination is not distributed uniformly across the oceans as a whole. Nor is it solely localized. Ocean currents run primarily clockwise in the Northern hemisphere. Thus from Japan across to and down the US west coast, with the Alaskan current swinging off like a giant eddy to the NW. At 1-2 knots think 6 -12 months roughly for longer lived sea borne contaminants to arrive.

The effect on the fisheries is this. “Coastal upwelling occurs against the western sides of continents in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific. There, colder water rises to replace warm surface water blown out to sea by strong offshore winds. Upwelling supports about half of the world's fisheries, although these cool waters account for only 10 percent of the surface area of the global ocean.” Think west coast. Source


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 15:33 | 1138251 plata pura
plata pura's picture

proper post

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 16:31 | 1138453 btdt
btdt's picture


Tue, 04/05/2011 - 16:33 | 1138459 Lapri
Lapri's picture

And absolutely disgusting way the Japanese government handled the dumping of contaminated water into the ocean. I'm ashamed to be Japanese.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 16:38 | 1138480 Lapri
Lapri's picture

WAIT A MINUTE... NHK doesn't have that news in their Japanese site!

I gotta put that up on my Japanese blog.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:40 | 1138690 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

Lapri, we're still discussing the severity of the radiation release but there are now three estimates posted further up this thread.  You might want to translate/post those.  Two are from different government sources and one is from here. 

Has the Japanese media made even a guess about the overall scope of radioactive release?  We could have missed something or a statement by the government or TEPCO.  Cesium and strontium being the main interest or threat.

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:06 | 1138581 Die Weiße Rose
Die Weiße Rose's picture

High level of cesium detected in sand lances

Small fish caught in waters off the coast of Ibaraki

have been found to contain radioactive cesium above the legal limit.

Ibaraki is south of Fukushima prefecture,

where the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is located.

Ibaraki Prefecture says 526 becquerels of radioactive cesium was detected in one kilogram of sand lances. The acceptable limit is 500 becquerels. It is the first time that higher-than-permitted levels of radioactive cesium have been found in fish.

All local fishery cooperatives in the prefecture have agreed to suspend sand lance fishing at the request of the prefectural government.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011 18:58 +0900 (JST)

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:12 | 1138600 Die Weiße Rose
Die Weiße Rose's picture

Plant radiation monitor says levels immeasurable

A radiation monitor at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says workers there are exposed to immeasurable levels of radiation.

The monitor told NHK that no one can enter the plant's No. 1 through 3 reactor buildings because radiation levels are so high that monitoring devices have been rendered useless. He said even levels outside the buildings exceed 100 millisieverts in some places.

Pools and streams of water contaminated by high-level radiation are being found throughout the facility.

The monitor said he takes measurements as soon as he finds water, because he can't determine whether it's contaminated just by looking at it. He said he's very worried about the safety of workers there.

Contaminated water and efforts to remove it have been hampering much-needed work to cool the reactors.

The monitor expressed frustration, likening the situation to looking up a mountain that one has to climb, without having taken a step up.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011 19:51 +0900 (JST)

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:28 | 1138650 Die Weiße Rose
Die Weiße Rose's picture

I am now too freaked out to eat any more seafood in Sydney -

I never know where the fish has come from and Australia is just a bit too close

to all this contamination. Cesium-137 freakes me out - 30 years half-life...

I just dont want to get that into my system and get Thyroid Cancer,

because I know someone that happened to in Germany after Chernobyl.

I guess people don't worry so much if they live on the other side of the globe,

but I am just below Japan,and I am freaking out about what to eat now!


7.5 mil. times legal limit of iodine in sea

The operator of the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says 7.5 million times the legal limit of radioactive iodine 131 has been detected from samples of seawater near the plant.

Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, found on Saturday that contaminated water was leaking from a cracked concrete pit near the No. 2 reactor.

Experts say this makes it clear that highly radioactive substances from the reactor are flowing into the sea, and that the leak must be stopped as soon as possible.

The utility firm said samples of water taken near the water intake of the No. 2 reactor at 11:50 AM Saturday contained 300,000 becquerels of iodine 131 per cubic centimeter, or 7.5 million times the legal limit.
TEPCO said the figure had dropped to 200,000 becquerels per cubic centimeter, or 5 million times the legal limit, in samples taken at 9:00 AM Monday.

Monday's sample also contained 1.1 million times the legal limit of cesium 137, which has a half life of 30 years.

On March 27th, 13-million becquerels of iodine 131 per cubic centimeter of water were detected in the turbine building of the No. 2 reactor. On Wednesday, water was found accumulated in a tunnel near the turbine building and the radiation level on the surface was measured at more than 1,000 millisieverts per hour.

The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency says it believes the radioactive substances are from nuclear fuel which leaked from the reactor into the water and flowed out.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011 15:10 +0900 (JST)

Tue, 04/05/2011 - 17:48 | 1138724 notofdahsleeple
notofdahsleeple's picture

And a 1/3 of the Earth's waters shall turn bitter....................

Wed, 04/06/2011 - 00:24 | 1139763 Abandon In Place
Abandon In Place's picture

When does typhoon season start? WTF will they do when the first typhoon takes aim at Japan? Order more epoxy spray stat!

Wed, 04/06/2011 - 19:39 | 1143316 TuffsNotEnuff
TuffsNotEnuff's picture

Editing the article after it ran for a day. Removing the March 15th SPEEDI stats.

Then removing the most of the sensible comments.

Removing the link to SPEEDI:

Removing that the current Ibaraki reading is 437 nanoGrays/hour and 95 nGy/h for Kanagawa near Tokyo. With 5,700 nG/h = 35,000,000/year = 5 REM/year, the IAEA safety limit.



Sat, 04/09/2011 - 21:32 | 1154189 thames222
thames222's picture

The Japanese are not handling this as well as I thought they would trying to fix it all on their own they've made things worse and now the water is polluted in a way that we can't measure the full extent of the danger.  Thanks, Japan.

Fri, 04/15/2011 - 23:53 | 1175289 Kimo
Kimo's picture

Send in Samuri warriors to clean the place up.  Oh, the Fukishima 50 are Samuri warriors.

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