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TEPCO Confirms Reactor 4 Spent Fuel Pool Is Now An Uncontrolled, Open Air Fission Process

Tyler Durden's picture


It had been a while since we had a factual update (as opposed to just lies and spin) from Fukushima. Courtesy of Kyodo, we now know that what was speculated by some as true, and rebutted by most as mere scaremongering, is in fact, fact. "Some of the spent nuclear fuel rods stored in the No. 4 reactor building
of the crisis-hit Fukushima Daiichi power plant were confirmed to be
damaged, but most of them are believed to be in sound condition, plant
operator Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Wednesday."
Naturally, in one month we will learn that most of them are damaged, and in two months, that each and every one has been demolished. "The firm known as TEPCO said its analysis of a 400-milliliter water
sample taken Tuesday from the No. 4 unit's spent nuclear fuel pool
revealed the damage to some fuel rods in such a pool for the first time,
as it detected higher-than-usual levels of radioactive iodine-131,
cesium-134 and cesium-137." These confirm an ongoing fission reaction. In a tremendously ironic development, the No. 4 reactor, halted for a regular inspection before last month's
earthquake and tsunami disaster, had all of its 1,331 spent fuel rods
and 204 unused fuel rods stored in the pool for the maintenance work. Unfortunately, the entire pool ended up being damaged following the quake and the subsequent explosion, in essence nullifying any protection that the containment dome would have provided. As the picture from the Asahi Shimbun below shows, the damage from overhanging structures which have subsequently fallen into the fuel pool likely means that there could well be an uncontrolled, if weak, fission reaction currently going on in the reactor 4 SFP (where the water temperature is currently 90 degrees) unprotected by the elements due to the complete destruction of the Reactor 4 shell.

(picture via of saposjoint)

More from Kyodo:

The cooling period for 548 of the 1,331 rods was shorter than that for others and the volume of decay heat emitted from the fuel in the No. 4 unit pool is larger compared with pools at other reactor buildings.

According to TEPCO, radioactive iodine-131 amounting to 220 becquerels per cubic centimeter, cesium-134 of 88 becquerels and cesium-137 of 93 becquerels were detected in the pool water. Those substances are generated by nuclear fission.

The government's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said the confirmed radioactive materials were up to 100,000 times higher than normal but that the higher readings may have also been caused by the pouring of rainwater containing much radioactivity or particles of radiation-emitting rubble in the pool.

The roof and the upper walls of the No. 4 reactor building have been blown away by a hydrogen explosion and damaged by fires since the disaster struck the plant. The water level in the spent fuel pool is believed to have temporarily dropped.

In the meantime the latest drywell readiation reading in Reactor 1 is still "out of commission"

(Source: METI)

And lastly, a demonstration from Fairewinds' Arnie Gunderson who shows how the Zircalloy uranium pellets mostly likely melted and shattered, possibly penetrating through the floor of reactors 2 and 3.


Nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen demonstrates how Fukushima's fuel rods melted and shattered from Fairewinds Associates on Vimeo.

(h/t Robert Breen)

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Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:28 | 1167152 Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden's picture

shit -> fan

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:31 | 1167159 hambone
hambone's picture

Hmmm....nothing matters til it matters.  This melt down, Japan in general, energy costs, deficits, monetization, etc. don't matter...yet.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:34 | 1167338 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

They will.

And nothing is ever over until it's over... until the fat lady sings if you will.

As far as we know the Fukushima fat lady may not have even been born yet.

Best to listen carefully to Arnie Gunderson if you really want to know how much we don't know. Unless of course you just don't wish to know.

Chances are you won't like this one bit...

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:59 | 1167422 hambone
hambone's picture

Once upon a time I was part of the matrix and believed in fairy tales.

Then I was rudely awaken and pulled into reality.  Reality sucks but there is no going back to the old misconceptions.  There also seems little chance of changing reality beyond self immolation or other radical action (likely to be marginalized).

Now I (we) wander among others whom I have little basic commonality of our understandings about the world in which we live. 

The more I know it seems the more unhappy I am.  The more unhappy I am the more I search for answers...which unfortunately only lead me to more unhappy answers. 

How much more do we want to we really want to know it is as fucked up as we think it is???  To what ends?  If we are but pawns, only able to understand but not change the course of events...then what?  Buy, sell, and live on the thin margin between the masses and those gathering inferences from those who know?  What kind of a fucking country is this?

Every man for himself hugging his PM's and seed packs...what a world.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:03 | 1167433 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

I don't hug my PM's... however sometimes I do fondle them a bit.


How about 400,000 likely cancer related deaths in a 200KM radius by extrapolating the Chernobyl numbers?

Crap almighty!... I sure hope this guy has been smoking something...


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:09 | 1167463 hambone
hambone's picture

Feel as if we (ZH) are voyeurs with a view to a crime(s) we are witnessing but no one cares, believes, or will act on the evidence we amass. 

Knowing is good but then what...just cynically profit from the crimes (ie, Robo) so we can be among the ever smaller class of haves over the ever growing have nots?

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 03:17 | 1168021 Julia
Julia's picture

There is no need to profit from it. I wouldn't even look for a trade on sad information such as this. It's not the point at all. But knowing the facts is important at times of such great uncertainty.

It sounds like you are on overload--what is actually known clincally as ZH Depression. At some point you just don't need to know more. You get too sucked into the negativity. You start to internalize too much of what you read and go into a negative feedback loop. Time to step away from the computer, hambone.

Give your nervous system a break. Watch a comedy, get out of the house, get some fresh air, and breathe. Chill out and realize that this blog does have side effects...some of which are not healthy. 

I've been here a long time. I rarely comment. I often just read the headlines and don't read the content or comments at all. Other times I read every post there is.  But I see you are getting to that ZH Depression state and believe me, many of us have been there. Anyone with a year and a half under their belt here has taken their breaks or they are addicted to the anger that they feel when the learn more to justify their rage.

Find a balance.  

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 05:07 | 1168066 A Man without Q...
A Man without Qualities's picture

The reason it makes us all depressed is because we are being led by psychopaths..

The aide said that guys like me were ''in what we call the reality-based community,'' which he defined as people who ''believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.'' I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. ''That's not the way the world really works anymore,'' he continued. ''We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.''

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 15:05 | 1169796 hambone
hambone's picture

Noted - agreed - done.

Thanks and best to you

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:08 | 1167882 RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

The human mind, like the proverbial vacuum, abhors a vacuum.  When there is a dearth of knowledge we fill the gaps with what we already know, right or wrong.  This leads to faulty thinking in some cases of those who didn't know much in the first place; and it leads to faulty conclusions by those who are simply obstinate.   Oh, the humanity....

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:22 | 1167899 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

well said.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 03:10 | 1168019 Sock Puppet
Sock Puppet's picture

Where is Trav7777, the comcast employee who moonlights as nuclear physicist and sais eevery thing will be just fine?  It amazes me who much knowlege he has, or maybe we should start calling him Cliff Claven.


One Sock Puppet can always smell another one.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 03:38 | 1168030 Howard_Beale
Howard_Beale's picture

He gets paged far too much. Be grateful when he is in his cave.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 11:12 | 1168813 chumbawamba
chumbawamba's picture

The human mind, like the proverbial vacuum...

For sure, there are many vacuous minded people about.

I am Chumbawamba.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:56 | 1167939 macholatte
macholatte's picture

The more I know it seems the more unhappy I am.  The more unhappy I am the more I search for answers...which unfortunately only lead me to more unhappy answers. 


Well said and a bullseye for your eloquent explaination as to why people love to watch Oprah, American Idol, Dancing with the Stars and especially sports. Escape into a fantasy and hide somewhere safe.


Every man builds his world in his own image. He has the power to choose, but no power to escape the necessity of choice.
Ayn Rand

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 10:04 | 1168547 Husk-Erzulie
Husk-Erzulie's picture

Unjunk :-)

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 08:59 | 1168345 Maximus Failius
Maximus Failius's picture

One we have breached the veil of reality what choice do we have but to travel further into the rabbit hole in search of answers?  Once the veil is breached the "common" world becomes an alien environment filled with souls that physically resemble you but might as well be a different species.  It would seems our choices are to sit in limbo between a greater understanding of reality and the alien world behind the veil, or we can attempt to come to a higher understanding of reality while taking the substantial risk that we may be left searching, never quite finding that higher understanding. It would seem to boil down to a classic choice of "chose your poison".





You put into words a question that i have been asking for years and never quite firgured out how to phrase.  It seems that higher understaing may indeed be a Faustian bargian.  For me this leads to the questions "what is the point" and "how does one define happiness when your family and friends exist in the same physical world but percieve a completely different experience from the same events".

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 12:37 | 1169164 RichardP
RichardP's picture

Not for nothing is there a cliche ignorance is bliss.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 09:14 | 1168387 goldfish1
goldfish1's picture

''We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities..."

We create realities also. There are many more of us.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:34 | 1167164 Landrew
Landrew's picture

Tyler, a personal thank you to you for creating a community of people who don't always agree, but, are active, passionate and great human beings!

I owe you more than I can say.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:39 | 1167184 mogul rider
mogul rider's picture

then donate regularly as the costs are significant to them. We all contribute as often as possible. We may get pissed at each other but this community is vital to the survival of our species as almost every other source (Turd you're OK) of information is BS.



Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:57 | 1167245 DollarMenu
DollarMenu's picture

I donate, but get no acknowledgment of receipt.

I hope the money goes beyond PayPal.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:08 | 1167457 dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

fuck paypal..  give me an address and I'll send some silver

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:07 | 1167627 reader2010
reader2010's picture

Or you can use Amazon Web Payments. Unlike Paypal, Amazon doesn't charge fees.



Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:23 | 1167311 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

Interesting community for sure.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:36 | 1167355 Confuchius
Confuchius's picture

We all are indebted to Tyler et. al. for keeping us aware.

Useful reading is also found at:

They have a fukushima thread on their home page.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:46 | 1167387 destiny
destiny's picture

Check the CRIIRAD.ORG site, they ve been warning on this right from the start.  They have dealt with over a thousand dossiers since the creation of this body.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:41 | 1167193 ReeferMac
ReeferMac's picture

LOL! Your writing is at times unparalleled Sir!

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:47 | 1167211 MSimon
MSimon's picture

I-131 is not at this point in time evidence of ongoing fission. Especially at the "low" levels  noted. If there is still a significant level of I-131 in two months that would be evidence.

Half live of I-131 = 8.02 days. Ten half lives = a reduction of activity by a factor of 1024. Say 1,000 to make it easy. Twenty half lives (160 days roughly) = a reduction of activity by a factor of 1,048,576. A million is close enough.

Tyler. You should run your posts on this past a nuke to get the details right.

I'm a former US Naval Nuke Reactor Operator qualified. (unlike that idiot Carter).


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:08 | 1167279 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Tyler quoted Kyodo, "Japan's Leading News Network", who in turn quote TEPCO. So are you saying Tyler should have a professional and paid 'nuke' on retainer for the duration to confirm all news releases made by TEPCO and Kyodo? Because if he just uses a volunteer 'nuke' he is leaving himself open to other criticisms.

If you want a professional 'nuke' on retainer here at ZH I suggest you donate a few thousands bucks to ZH to help pay for the professional 'nuke' for a week. Otherwise you will just have to settle for the TEPCO experts and Japans' mainstream media outlets for fact checking.

TEPCO confirms damage to part of No. 4 unit's spent nuke fuel
Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:19 | 1167292 MSimon
MSimon's picture

I'll work for free.

I wonder if being a former Naval Nuke Reactor Operator qualifies me as a professional?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:31 | 1167342 Gmpx
Gmpx's picture

Usually operators have little understanding. Car driver usually knows nothing about the car design - my mum for example.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 02:32 | 1168002 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

You haven't got a clue what training naval nukes get.  I can assure you they get far more than just learning how to push the right buttons at the right time.  Do a little studying on Adm. Hyman Rickover some time and you'll probably get a little insight on just how high the bar is in the naval nuclear program.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:38 | 1167363 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

That's about what you'd be worth I fear.

BTW... how did your meltdowns turn out?

No insult intended... but if it's all the same to you I think I'll go with Arnie for the time being!

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:04 | 1167449 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

Arnie has been a breath of fresh air from day one and part of the reason for that is he's studiously avoided sensationalism.  And over time he's been proven right in every materially important assertion he's made so far.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:34 | 1167555 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

I'll work for free.

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

I'll take your input; ignore the clpwns and post away ...

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:43 | 1167382 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

CD I am one who feels a great debt to ZH for the information, the analysis and insights I have never found anywhere else.  But the Tylers are not perfect, they're human.  A little fact checking in technical areas outside their normal expertise wouldn't hurt anything.

There are tens of thousands of people looking for factual information and understanding from which to make life or death real life decisions about what to eat and where to live.


Tepco has (belatedly as always) confirmed fuel rods in SFP 4 are damaged.  They haven't "confirmed" anything like the headline on this article suggests.

The assertion that things falling into the pool is somehow evidence of subsequent fission in the pool is false.  It darned sure makes getting at those fuel assemblies for some kind of final disposition a lot harder...but it doesn't mean they somehow spontaneously went critical again.

Even the update betrays technical ignorance.  "Zircalloy uranium pellets"?  C'mon...we can do better than that.  And for the sake of people who need to be able to base life changing  decisions on real information we need to do better than that.

I'm not trying to minimize the seriousness of this whole mess.  When Tyler writes "Shit -> fan" I'm in full agreement.  But overstating is just as bad as Tepco's continual lying and downplaying.

If I were in Tokyo I would be moving heaven and earth to get out.  Not because I believe Tokyo is immediately dangerous, but because this is far from over and Tokyo just might become dangerous in the future if just a few things go wrong from here and the wind blows the wrong way.  If there ever is a rush to get out of the Tokyo area and you're not gone already you probably won't get out at all.  You just can't mobilize 30 million plus people at one time.

Just a few hours ago there was another 6.1 quake...luckily well over 100km from the plant.  But that was followed by a 5.7, a 4.9 and a 5.2 just a few dozen km from the plant.  None of those likely to severly affect the situation but certainly a reminder that the seismic situation is horribly unstable and we're just one unfortunately placed aftershock from a descent into true chaos with this whole thing.


Nevertheless, truth matters.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:04 | 1167442 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

I never said Tyler was perfect nor completely accurate. Just that he was quoting a news outlet and the nuclear operator itself. I also want correct information and at times I also find ZH articles to be a bit short on facts. But I'm not looking at a free volunteer organization such as ZH in the mouth. Contrary to what many people think about ZH I don't see evidence of many Tylers, at least not any more. And considering that Tyler puts out 12 to 20 articles each day 7 days a week I am amazed Tyler gets it right as often as he does.

As I said in the comment above exactly how do you expect Tyler to "fact check" information about the Fukushima disaster without engaging an expert? If he uses volunteers he is setting himself up for the same criticism as if he did it alone. This web site lives off donations and add revenue. Anyone who thinks Tyler is making money of an quantity off this site is wrong (in my opinion) so how is Tyler supposed to "fact check" these nuclear stories since it is out of his field? He shouldn't avoid the story because it clearly affects his expertise, the financial world.

Does he over reach at times? Yes. Should you expect him to be expert on the Fukushima story? No. I'm suggesting that we reel in our expectations a bit and understand the limitations Tyler is dealing with. ZH is not a one or two article a day blog. The ZH blog is prolific so if it gets it a bit wrong on subjects at times I'm not going to be angry. I get what I pay for and the last time I checked I pay nothing other than donations. 

Just my opinion and there is no anger between us. I respect what you are saying.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:21 | 1167498 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

No anger here either CD and your points are well taken.  I'm not angry with Tyler either...all the points you make are valid.

Still, I'll try to correct those isolated (and understandable) occaisional errors.

I'd much rather have a bit of overstatement than the consistent lying, minimizing and obfuscation we've seen from those in charge until now.  Panicking and leaving the area are much more sensible actions right now than sitting tight and trusting the government or Tepco to tell the truth in my opinion.

Still....truth matters :)

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:22 | 1167499 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:51 | 1167593 samsara
samsara's picture

"Just a few hours ago there was another 6.1 quake...luckily well over 100km from the plant..."

And just a little while ago Nevada has had a series of quakes just up the road a piece from Yucca Mountain(the empty site).  Safe place for Centuries right? 

Mag's were 4.4,  4.2   and a few 3.+

Also take a look at the Virgin Islands.   SOMETHING is going to happen there I believe.  (or somewhere close)  They look like the run up to Japan's quakes.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:21 | 1167306 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

"I'm a former US Naval Nuke Reactor Operator qualified."

Hi, have you been on site at Fukushima to collect data to make these judgments?

No?  Well I'm a licensed OB/GYN and I wouldn't comment on your wife's patootie without examining it first.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:31 | 1167334 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Well I'm glad to have an obgyn commenting on the subject. I'm sure you are much better qualified to comment on nuclear reactor accidents than I am.

All I can go by is the evidence given. Same as Tyler. However the "news" people in Japan have no clue on interpreting the evidence they are given. Evidently they do not have a nuke on staff. By evidence of course I do not mean "words". I go for the numbahs.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:36 | 1167362 Gmpx
Gmpx's picture

Whatever they say is to calm people down. The truth is unimaginable.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:16 | 1167484 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

"Well I'm glad to have an obgyn commenting on the subject. I'm sure you are much better qualified to comment on nuclear reactor accidents than I am."

Since neither of us has any first hand data or any experience with a category 7 nuclear disaster a OB/Gyn is as good as anything.  If it makes you feel better, your comments are just as pertinent as those from TEPCO's upper managment.

Here's something we can both feel comfortable commenting on: cesium 137 is not good for your wife's patootie.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:21 | 1167313 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Some one deleted my dup post - it wasn't me. Maybe Tyler is paying attention.

If so - good on ya mate.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:51 | 1167407 destiny
destiny's picture

Check the CRIIRAD.ORG info, at least it is an independant Lab on radioactive research and information operating away from the nuke lobby.  They publish real facts.   Fact is, no gvt is willing to provide REAL data...

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:43 | 1167378 Confuchius
Confuchius's picture


Perhaps you are unaware, due to your overeducation in these matters, that the heat source in fukushima's fragmented reactors is from fission.

If you disagree, then you are suggesting the heat is from fusion.

The fission will continue virtually in perpetuity, at an ever reduced rate.

The farms around fukushima will no doubt produce edible produce once more beginning in 2387 AD.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:40 | 1167571 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

 that the heat source in fukushima's fragmented reactors is from fission.

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

... how wrong can you can be ...

A) We're talking the (spent) fuel pond here in #4 building

B) After Uranium 'fissioning', there are 'products' that continue to produce heat that must be removed  ... ALL THIS HAS BEEN COVERED.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:43 | 1167384 malikai
malikai's picture

Xenon or Krypton would be definitive proof. Iodine decays too slowly to categorically say that fission is ongoing yet. I agree with MSimon. These posts should be proofed for technical accuracy.

There are too many people here who believe everything they read. If it is wrong, you risk misleading people and damaging your credibility.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:52 | 1167413 destiny
destiny's picture


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:30 | 1167546 The Profit Prophet
The Profit Prophet's picture

To junk or not to junk....that is the question.

"There are too many people here who believe everything they read." I know you're not what's with this completely disfactual statement???!!!  Most of the people on this site, are on this site for the very reason that they don't believe everyting they read...including almost everything printed by the MSM.

Proper analysis speaks for itself.  You have been place on the DJ watch list.

T.E.I.N. everyone!

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:42 | 1167575 malikai
malikai's picture

See the post directly below this one.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:13 | 1167891 RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

I don't believe any o' you sonsabitches.  Tyler neither!

I'm here for the Fight Club appetizers.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:48 | 1167932 palmereldritch
palmereldritch's picture

You were probably the goomer that got into my greenbin last week

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:21 | 1167478 jus_lite_reading
jus_lite_reading's picture

MSimon I'm not a US naval Nuke operator but I know more than you. Such high levels of Iodine 131 one month out is evidence enough. We should have seen descreasing amounts to less than 20 becquerels/ccm not in the hundreds. Worse still would should be seeing such high levels of Cesium 134 and 137. And IF THATS NOT ENOUGH MR SMART GUY then explain the STRONTIUM that is being detected!

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:38 | 1167568 malikai
malikai's picture

Please try to form coherent sentences next time. It might also be useful to try spell checking your posts before you hit the save button. Finally, it might be a good idea to do a bit of research on the subject before self-declaring your mastery of nuclear physics. Your strontium comment definitely shows your lack of knowledge. The caesium comment is just flat unintelligible.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:59 | 1167608 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Tellurium + Neutron beams confirms it in my book.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:33 | 1167698 Cistercian
Cistercian's picture

 Wrong Bob.The blue flashes are a kind of ball lightning or merely reflections of the planet Venus.Venus is often mistaken for rogue nuclear fission.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 23:31 | 1167837 Ransom
Ransom's picture

Venus is often mistaken for rogue nuclear fission.


Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:54 | 1167937 palmereldritch
palmereldritch's picture

SwamPu Gas

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 05:04 | 1168064 malikai
malikai's picture

Incorrect, Cistercian. The blue flashes are smurfs having sex. They're attempting to reproduce rapidly in the hot, radioactive environment of the reactors and SFPs. Studies have statistically shown that smurfs reproduce much faster in the presence of high radiation.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:07 | 1167885 knukles
knukles's picture

"detected higher-than-usual levels of radioactive iodine-131, cesium-134 and cesium-137"

Now, who was it that said it was nice that we weren't being pissed on anymore?


Jesus H Fucking Christ on a Crutch.
I give up.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 10:07 | 1168557 Bendromeda Strain
Bendromeda Strain's picture

Tellurium + Neutron beams confirms it in my book.

Well, yeah. Except that we're talking about Reactor 4, not Reactor 1. If it is too hard, make a scorecard to keep track.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:29 | 1167688 butsurigakusha
butsurigakusha's picture

Good to see some real physics-based numbers quoted.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 23:56 | 1167869 patb
patb's picture

"According to TEPCO, radioactive iodine-131 amounting to 220 becquerels per cubic centimeter, cesium-134 of 88 becquerels and cesium-137 of 93 becquerels were detected in the pool water. Those substances are generated by nuclear fission."

"At the time of the earthquake unit 4 had been shut down for a scheduled periodic inspection since 30 November 2010."

So MSimon,  So Novermber 30 to April 13 is 4 Months and 13 days, or 134 days, divide by 8.02 =16.7 Halflives.

2**16 is 106,000 Multiplied into the current intensity of 220 Becquerels gives me

23,421,980 Becquerels/CC


so somewhere between 23-24Million Becquerels per CC. 


Now I'm no Naval Reactor Technician but, do you think this is Plausible?




Thu, 04/14/2011 - 06:52 | 1168108 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Unfortunately they don't give a standard deviation with the measurement. They don't say how the measurement might be contaminated with other species.

From the evidence I saw initially I thought there was recriticality in #1. So I'm not adverse to making such a judgment. I'm not ready to say that for pool #4. If there was evidence besides I-131 for pool #4 I would make that judgment. In the mean time I'm going to wait.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 23:56 | 1167872 patb
patb's picture

"If there is still a significant level of I-131 in two months that would be evidence."

In two months, there won't be anything left to worry about, but a few desperate survivors fighting over the remnants of our society and evading 30 foot tall cockroaches

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 03:01 | 1168015 d_senti
d_senti's picture

Uh, 220 megabecquerels/m^3 is low? I'm honestly asking, because I wonder if maybe you misread it, as it was in cubic centimeters. Seems obscenely high to me, especially when you reverse calculate the half life. I-131 would have gone through 4 half lives by now, meaning if it were not an ongoing release, the initial amount in the water would be 8 times this level.

That's a crapton of I-131.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:50 | 1167235 chunga
chunga's picture

Yankees 3 - Orioles 0. Bottom of the second inning. Stay focused.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:22 | 1167669 Pale Green Pants
Pale Green Pants's picture

"there could well be an uncontrolled, if weak, fission reaction currently going on in the reactor 4 SFP (where the water temperature is currently 90 degrees)"

90 degrees Fahrenheit? Celsius ? Kelvin? kinda makes a difference...


Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:26 | 1167908 patb
patb's picture

japanese always work in Celsius

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 14:44 | 1169704 Armchair Bear
Armchair Bear's picture

three people have junked this? 


we are in deep doodoo folks.  anyone who cannot see it is not paying attention.  I have listened to EVERYONE I sounded the alarm to in mid-March about this being worse than Chernobyl.


They are still in total denial.  This is the game changer. 


Do you think you will EVER get any honest reporting from the MSM stating "folks, time to batten down the hatches, the SHIT has officially HIT the FAN"?




Thanks Tyler.  This is a sad day for our beautiful earth.  It has been like this for me ever since March 12...  It was obvious to me that a coverup for the mismanagement of this deal would be even worse than the GOM disaster.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:02 | 1167268 Dane Bramage
Dane Bramage's picture

The opposite of fault-tolerance isn't working out so well in Fukushima.  That is, storing all your 20+ years worth of extremely toxic radioactive eggs in one basket, a basket that needs to hold water to be effective, but is made of concrete (known to crack), above ground, above the reactors and in an earthquake+tsunami zone has, shockingly, experienced epic failure.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:21 | 1167314 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Nobody could have seen this coming.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:21 | 1167300 New Survivalist
New Survivalist's picture

Lazy much, loser? Why even bother capitalizing his name. You must be so important you don't have time for a well-written sentence.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:43 | 1167371 cowdiddly
cowdiddly's picture


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:15 | 1167469 jus_lite_reading
jus_lite_reading's picture

Mr. truthiness- Go screw. You owe TD more than youre worth and youre getting junked outta here.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:29 | 1167539 mick_richfield
mick_richfield's picture

huh?  poorly thought-out comment, truthiness.  which part didn't you understand?


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:26 | 1167145 patb
patb's picture

Most likely the Cranes when they fell punhed a hole in the spent fuel pool, which is why they can't hold water.



Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:29 | 1167150 Life of Illusion
Life of Illusion's picture


Hitachi Ltd. and General Electric Co. submitted a plan to dismantle the crippled Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant they helped build, seen in this handout photograph on Thursday, March 31, 2011, as Japanese engineers battle to contain the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl. Source: Japan Ministry of Defense via Bloomberg

Hitachi Ltd. (6501) and General Electric Co. (GE) submitted a plan to dismantle the crippled Fukushima Dai- Ichi plant they helped build as Japanese engineers battle to contain the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl. The proposal, which also involves Exelon Corp. (EXC) and Bechtel Corp., was submitted April 8, said Yuichi Izumisawa, a Tokyo- based spokesman at Hitachi, Japan’s second-largest maker of nuclear reactors. He declined to specify details of the plan. The Hitachi-led proposal will vie against plans from groups led by Toshiba Corp. (6502) and Areva SA (CEI) as Tokyo Electric Power Co. begins preparing to clean up a nuclear disaster that’s led to the evacuation of hundreds of thousands of inhabitants. Decommissioning the reactors may take three decades and cost more than 1 trillion yen ($12 billion) to complete, engineers and analysts say. “It’s unclear how much the contract will be worth but it’s going to be a large amount given it would take decades to complete,” said Yuichi Ishida, a Tokyo-based analyst at Mizuho Investors Securities Co. “This isn’t an ordinary dismantling.” Hitachi rose 0.3 percent to 401 yen at the midday break in Tokyo trading. The benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Average declined 0.1 percent. Rival Groups Toshiba’s group, which includes Babcock & Wilcox Co. (BWC) and Shaw Group Inc. (SHAW), submitted a plan on April 4 that would take 10 years or more to complete, spokesman Keisuke Ohmori said last week. Toshiba’s Westinghouse Electric Co., Babcock & Wilcox and Shaw were involved in the decommissioning of the Three Mile Island plant, he said. Toshiba, Japan’s largest maker of nuclear reactors, also helped build the Fukushima reactors. Areva, the world’s biggest maker of nuclear reactors, plans to submit a proposal, Jacques Besnainou, chief executive of the Paris-based company’s U.S. subsidiary, said this week. Hitachi’s U.S. partners were also involved in the cleanup work at Three Mile Island and the 1986 Chernobyl incident, the company said yesterday. At Pennsylvania’s Three Mile Island in 1979, one reactor partially melted in the worst U.S. accident, taking $973 million to repair and almost 12 years to clean up, according to a report on the World Nuclear Association’s website. More than 1,000 workers were involved in designing and conducting the cleanup operation, the report said.
Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:12 | 1167285 tiger7905
tiger7905's picture

Latest from Arnie at Fairewinds.

Link to review of how far off they were during 3 mile Island...

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:30 | 1167154 ihedgemyhedges
ihedgemyhedges's picture

Just curious, but where the hades is Al Gore(bachev) on all this???  I mean, doesn't fission have an effect on greenhouse gasses?????

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:41 | 1167190 mogul rider
mogul rider's picture

getting his green trading empire up and running, costs thousands to make billions

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:53 | 1167237 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

ALgore was also absent for GOM along with all the major eco-organization-frauds.  Although nuclear radiation is not good for the environment, stopping it does not empower Algore and his friends.  Quite the opposite.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:14 | 1167288 espirit
espirit's picture

Global warming doesn't fit well with nuclear winter, does it Al?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:52 | 1167402 Confuchius
Confuchius's picture

You might do a bit of studying on the subject of "greenhouse gasses"


There is only one of consequence: it is called water vapour.

Simply cover all the oceans and lakes with plastic film and voila! no greenhouse gasses.

Oh. And the planet will look just like Mars when you are finished.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 04:41 | 1168059 Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

Water vapor is orders of magnitude more critical than carbon dioxide as its spectroscopic absorption spectra peaks from 4-7 microns whereas carbon dioxide does not have any peaks above 4.5 microns. 

Proportionality argues for another - Nitrogen

Nitrogen's absorption spectra (greenhouse characteristic) is remarkably similar to carbon dioxide's (peaking under 5 microns) but it is 2 x10^3 times more prevelant in the atmosphere.

So if you were to increase or reduce the concentration of carbon dioxide by a factor of 10, the effect on temperature would be the same changing the concentration of Nitrogen by 1/2 of 1%.

That is like saying buying a single silver coin from the pawnshop will have the same impact on global silver prices as the average JPM silver  transaction.

However, reducing the level of carbon dioxide by even 50% is inadvisable, unless one seeks a crop failure whose impact is measured on a scale of global genocide that exceeds anything witnessed in the 20th century.    

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:37 | 1167562 samsara
samsara's picture

I think he's settling in at his ranch down in Paraguay,  Waiting for his neighbor GW et al to arrive sometime this year when the SHTF.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:57 | 1167943 palmereldritch
palmereldritch's picture

Gore is tweaking things...getting ready to launch the new Carbon 14 Tax

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:33 | 1167155 Landrew
Landrew's picture

I want to say thanks to all ZH'ers for getting my video into the hands of students in Japan. A number of letters are coming in and your effort is amazing thanks.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:06 | 1167450 fuu
fuu's picture

Glad to know it got around. Thank you for your time!

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:36 | 1167161 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

I'd like more factual information on the isotopes. Of all the really malevolent fission products being expelled it is my understanding that Iodine/Cesium/Caesium are the more benign compared to the things like Strontium/Plutonium/Tellurium etc.

I want more information on the products that can really fuck your world up which I feel is something being surpressed. If I/C/C are being found here in the states why can't S/P/T also be blowing over here? I think it is a more of a concern for Japan but if we are getting plutonium flurries, I certainly would like to be advised.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:38 | 1167173 ihedgemyhedges
ihedgemyhedges's picture

"I think it is a more of a concern for Japan but if we are getting plutonium flurries, I certainly would like to be advised."

Just pretend it's snow and make a snowman.........

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:38 | 1167179 Landrew
Landrew's picture

Cesium 137 and Strontium 90 are beta emitters with 24k yrs. half life. Plutonium is a Alpha emitter and you don't want to know the half life:) When you have a full blown nuclear melt-down you can get very rare elements with some half lifes of less than a minute. Of course you need the right target sources to tack on the neutrons:)

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:10 | 1167280 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

hard to imagine why the junk.  this is true, i think.  because of the nature of the fuel/spent fuel, it seems the Ce-137 is the real joker in the deck.  just off-the-chart amounts of this stuff, and it isn't cool in the food chain.  not for decades.  shit!  this is very bad news, in spite of all the "dilution" theories counselling not to worry.  this stuff hurts life and people.  and it's really really coming outs fuk_u, bigtime!  imo.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 04:01 | 1168040 Drag Racer
Drag Racer's picture

High radioactivity detected in fish, vegetables

Fishing group cancels sea urchin, abalone catch

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:42 | 1167557 anonnn
anonnn's picture


 Strontium-90 [half-life 29 yrs] decays to yttrium-90 [half-life 64 hrs]

Health effects --- [1] Sr-90 mimics Calcium and thus  rapidly taken-up and concentrated by bone demand,etc  and [2] the Yttrium exacerbates damage bec it releases high-energy beta [v. lo-energy Sr. beta ].

Note: both red and white blood cells produced by bone-marrow. Irradiated-marrow result is weakening of overall immune system, long and short term. TEPCO et al want to avoid discussion of Sr and Plutonium releases.

Dr. Ernest Sternglass did clasic fallout studies that make a fascinating and valuable read.

Also noteworthy---Pu is long life alpha-particle emitter. Of course, the popuar story is that alphas will not penetrate a thin sheet of paper and thus relatively harmless.. The unpopular story is that the popular story applies only to external radiatiion; taken internally, breathed or ingested, etc those cute alphas are rather deadly...and hardly detectable from outside the body.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 03:17 | 1168023 d_senti
d_senti's picture

hard to imagine the junk...uh, maybe because the info is wrong? Cesium 137 has a half life of 30 years, not 24k. Sr-90 is 29 years.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:24 | 1167318 espirit
espirit's picture

No problem with Caesium-137, as long as you get the right dose.  Irradiates food and preserves, like forever.

sarc on/off, I forget which.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:39 | 1167373 FilthyLucre
FilthyLucre's picture

I131 will increase your chances of thyroid cancer - but it has both a short radiological and biological half life so the exposure period is brief - unless of course the source is not contained and you are subjected to ongoing exposure. It is an alpha emitter and only causes localised cell damage.

Cs137 (and other Caesium isotopes) will increase your chances of all sorts cancers as it is deposited throughout the body - organs and muscles are the major places. It has a long half life and reasonably long biological half life - prussian blue can help to dispell it from the intestines but isn't a panacea. It is a gamma emitter and will cause cell and chromosone damage everywhere.

Sr90 (and other Strontium isotopes) will replace Calcium in your body and accumulate in your bones. It is a beta emitter and will damage bone marrow. It has a long biological and reasonably long radiological half life.

I131 and Cs137 can in no way be viewed as benign. The resolution rates for thyroid cancer are high, but do you really want to test this? The outcomes for the range of cancers caused by Cs137 not so good.

Isotopes of heavier elements such as Pu will not show the same rates of airborne dispersal as I131 and any heavy concentrations will likely be limited to local fallout. Dispersal of these heavier elements through the oceans should also be somewhat localised.

If you ingest a small amount of I131 which results in you developing thyroid cancer and your outcome is bad - ie you die. Then *your* world is pretty much fucked up. Its all about statistical outcomes - if you are the statistic, then you are dead.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:36 | 1167167 americanspirit
americanspirit's picture

glow little glow worm, glimmer, glimmer

life is an incandescent shimmer

when you gotta glow, you gotta glow

So glow Fukushima, glow (and blow)

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:36 | 1167168 FunkyMonkeyBoy
FunkyMonkeyBoy's picture

Does this have the same electric atmosphere as a good Open Air Concert? Can we expect a 5 minute solo?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:41 | 1167181 Dr. Porkchop
Dr. Porkchop's picture

Better than Zeppelin!


Black Swan


Hey hey mama Fukushima blew,

Gonna make you dead, gonna make you puke....

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:55 | 1167242 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Free bird!

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:37 | 1167171 Lord Welligton
Lord Welligton's picture

Oh Shit.

"TEPCO Confirms Reactor 4 Spent Fuel Pool Is Now An Uncontrolled"

So trav7777 will say this is not "bad" news.

We always knew this was the case.

Look at the facts. Then let me persuade you that you are safe.

It's what sociopaths do.

Ignore the headline.

Ignore the man behind the curtain.

Everything is oki doki.

We have the information.

Go back to sleep.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:46 | 1167218 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

I can't find anywhere Tepco has "admitted" anything like 4's SFP becoming an "open air reactor".

They've apparently admitted damaged fuel rods...belatedly of course...that was pretty well established a long time ago.  But, that's a far cry from active, ongoing fission reactions. Damaged fuel rods and the threat of further overheating and burning down even more of the fuel rods is horrific in and of itself.  If SFP 4 does descend in to new instances of fission we'll know it....and quick.

This is plenty serious without the exaggeration.  You've been Sapo'd on this one Tyler.  Take the time to read around a bit in Ivar's forum/blog and you'll see what I mean.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:14 | 1167289 Lord Welligton
Lord Welligton's picture

“I can't find anywhere Tepco has "admitted" anything like 4's SFP becoming an "open air reactor".”

I can’t find anywhere that Tyler said that.

What I find is that Tyler’s strapline was “Open Air Reaction”.

A difference in language.

Or perhaps you also think everything is oki doki.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:49 | 1167400 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

No, I don't think everything is oki doki and I think the language in the title is pretty obvious....and obviously incorrect.

Striving for accuracy isn't minimizing. 

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:18 | 1167297 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

"If SFP 4 does descend in to new instances of fission we'll know it....and quick."

How will we know?  A report from NHK or BBC?  Perhaps people's hair falling out?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:52 | 1167415 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

No, the volumious column of smoke and steam rising above a completely evacuated complex will undeniably tell the tale.  There will be no way to hide it.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:02 | 1167444 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Steam?  Is there still water in there?  Suppose there isn't?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:27 | 1167529 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

Well, with all the lying to date I suppose that's possible.  But, it would mean Tepco's lying has ascended to a new level since they just claimed they pulled a 400 ml water sample from that pool.

And it's a moot point anyway.  If SFP 4 went critical the smoke would probably be quite substantial all by itself even if little steam was present.



Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:24 | 1167677 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

#1 went critical, I believe.  I don't remember a column of tall column of smoke arisimg from it.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:46 | 1167727 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

Yes, and those instances of fission occurred inside substantially intact containment.  SFP's are a very different circumstance.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 08:35 | 1168264 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

"SFP's are a very different circumstance."

Agreed.  There is no containment for the SFPs.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:21 | 1167304 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

Stormdancer: sorry, but the fact that you can't find something or understand the poss nature(s)/amount of fission and the vaporization of the poisons, does not make tyler wrong.  people on zH have been commenting about the evidence of fission in #4 since the roof blew off.  really.  very tentatively, at first, with many people warning about jumping to conclusions, logically, given the "facts" as we knew them.

more and more, the evidence and facts pointed to fission.  and we still don't know exactly what kind, or why, but there is quite a bit of fission in 4.  i would say that your words:  "ongoing fission reactions" is the best description of the reality there, too. 

even tho you seem to believe only in the impossibility of same. 

keep with it, ok?  so will tyler & slewie.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:59 | 1167428 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

You are privy to info I haven't seen.  There has been substantial evidence that something has gone critical in one of the loaded reactors.  I haven't seen any credible evidence of criticality in SFP 4.

There is a huge difference between burning fuel rods and criticality.  Either one is horrible.  More of both is possible.  But stick with the facts.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:32 | 1167542 samsara
samsara's picture

I haven't seen any credible evidence of criticality in SFP 4.


The point is SD, that from the track record of the last month,  Many of us believe that MANY MANY will DIE withOUT Ever getting 'Credible Evidence"  that they are dying.

Radiation doesn't really really give a shit whether 'YOU' have credible evidence or not.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:41 | 1167574 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

well, again, i haven't seen you here too much for the last 4.5 weeks, either, but i might have missed your inputs, too, ok?   but, you're sure here, now!

you question me on the facts.  the facts are not in dipute, are they?  tyler and i agree that the SFP went zircalloy melt, and you say:  "There is a huge difference between burning fuel rods and criticality."  

basically, as i said, many here felt the same way about two weeks ago.  not any more.  tyler gives the correct data for what the hell is/was in that SFP #4.  it went melt.  and started to intermittently fission, quite briefly, non-sustainable, in the mess, but overall, quite a bit of small chain reactions. 

you're from missouri.  you can't believe that 2 + 2 =4, you actually must count it, or have someone else tell you this is objective.  i don't care.  tyler's thesis explains much more than yours, imo.  you want "facts" but what we are saying is look at that building.  there was NO fuel in the reactor core.  only in the SFP.  shit, man, think!!!

thanks for yer input, too!  peace.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:21 | 1167649 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

You don't seem to be able to discern the difference between "going melt" and "going critical".  Which is fine.  It's a serious situation with plenty of potential for getting much more serious.

Again, there is substantial evidence indicating reactor 1 or 2 or both have gone critical since the whole thing started.  No evidence that I know of that SFP 4 has done so.

Reactor 2 has a blown torus...known for a good while now.  A "core on the floor" scenario is pretty likely in reactor 1 and quite possible for 2 or 3.

I wouldn't want to be anywhere in Japan right now because of the open ended nature of this thing.  Tokyo is going to be 24hrs away from disaster for a very long time depending on subsequent developments and wind direction.  Not a good place to be.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 02:22 | 1167994 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

well, perhaps i wasn't clear.  i don't want to seem like i don't understand something.  there's a shitload slewie doesn't understand.  what i do understand is this:  there was no coolant in this SFP for quite some time.  the cladding freaking melted.  the hydrogen explosion from the zircalloy melt blew the freaking building to smithereens.  then we started getting chain and criticality.  i may be totally fuking wrong.  happens more often than i'd care to admit, ok? but if you can't understand me, don't blame me, ok?

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 08:09 | 1168211 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Assuming you are talking about the SFPs this is where you went wrong:

then we started getting chain and criticality.

The only criticality I would bet on is reactor #1. It is possible that any of the SFP could go critical. But at this point I don't think they have.

Let me add that stormdancer knows his nuclear. And thank you storm for the atta boy above.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:15 | 1167479 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Fission products are not evidence of CURRENT fission. Unless the half lives are on the order of a few hours or less. I have yet to read a report about I-131being evidence of fission in pool #4. The closest to that was the DIFFERENTIAL amounts of I-131 in reactor #1 vs #2 & #3.



Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:42 | 1167579 mick_richfield
mick_richfield's picture

I think there was a recriticality inside #1 last Thursday after the 7.2 earthquake.

Shortly after the earthquake, the radiation levels inside #1 exceeded 100 Sv / hr, and temperature rose.  Then the radiation sensor became unresponsive -- or they shut it off, or quit reporting on it for a while.

Then, on Saturday and Sunday, Cesium deposition rates in Ibaraki went from 10 or 20 Bq/m^2 per day to 400 on Saturday and 800 on Sunday -- before they dropped down again.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:56 | 1167599 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture

Shortly after the earthquake, the radiation levels inside #1 exceeded 100 Sv / hr, 

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Could be instrumentation failure too, due to other factors (broken wire(s), heat, radiation, saltwater), so, we don't have all the facts on this either ...

Some verification I would expect could be made from outside the building, e.g. a higher than normal reading up next to reactor bldg #1.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 23:08 | 1167808 Stormdancer
Stormdancer's picture

Evidence for recriticality in reactor 1 preceeded the 7.1 by quite a bit.  It seems more likely to me that the dramatic increase in reactor 1's drywell radiation levels probably coincided with the pressure vessel failing and dumping some part of a molten core into the drywell. 

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:25 | 1167321 Lord Welligton
Lord Welligton's picture

"I can't find anywhere Tepco has "admitted" anything"

Just about the most truthful thing.

Go back to sleep.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 00:44 | 1167925 trav7777
trav7777's picture

So trav7777 will say this is not "bad" news.

You idiot ass...I was the one, more than a week ago, who said that neutron beams and radionuclide emissions were likely from SFPs.  I said that.  Nobody else did.  Me.

If you construe that as my having said it was not bad news, then you are a fucking idiot.

I have maintained since day THREE that the danger here was not reactor cores; in fact I said LET THEM MELT DOWN, they cannot be saved.  Spend all efforts on mitigation of SFP rods because there is NO CONTAINMENT for them.

I would not be surprised if sporadic criticality was occurring in these ponds as a result of mechanical displacement of fuel elements plus inclusion of unborated water.

There is argument upthread about silly shit such as "proof."  No, this is not proof in the OP, it is EVIDENCE.  It is what I said 2 weeks ago, there is EVIDENCE of ongoing criticality here and there, xenon isotopes downpipe, Cl36.  If they find Cl36 in the water, there you go.

The heavier than expected isotope concentration is evidence of there having been sporadic criticality at some point.  News flash- these events are the accidents which KILL plant workers.  Not exposures, not leaks, but criticality accidents due to moving some shit too close to other shit.

The premise is that SFPs have undergone some criticality during the aftermath.  It is not dispositive; there is no proof.  It is only a theory that tends to fit the facts.

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 02:32 | 1167999 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

well, we did go balls to the wall about this shit, for days, here, it seems.  and there was a lot of very interesting stuff being shared.  yes, trav said that about the SFP's but others went into that, too.  almost a dozen, probably, certainly a half-dozen, easily.  what the hell?  can these SFP's be going critical or not.  theoretically, yes!  and, there are clues around, as you say.  arnie goes into this @ fairewinds.  shit!  no two people on earth see this the same way, as far as i can tell.  so what?  tell it like ya see it, and invite others to do the same.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:39 | 1167182 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

water seems to be perfect for a bubble bath....

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:40 | 1167188 Abitdodgie
Abitdodgie's picture

Does this mean my electric bill is going to go up?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:55 | 1167250 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Yes.  This is your fault.  You wanted electricity so you could play your "electric twanger".  Now you'll have to pay.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:41 | 1167192 sangell
sangell's picture

A month into this thing and they still have no idea what the inside of that plant even looks like much less a method to remove and secure those spent fuel rods, if that can even be done.

Then they've got a dozen or so other reactors in the quake damaged zone. Just what surprises will those units unleash when they are brought back on line. I assume they are going to be brought back on line for the summer otherwise Honshu is going to be doing rolling blackouts forever.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:56 | 1167255 hardcleareye
hardcleareye's picture

It is going to be very difficult if at all possible to put the monster back in the pen, looks like they are working on it.


TOKYO, April 8 (Xinhua) -- Toshiba Corp. submitted a proposal to Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) to decommission four troubled reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, local media reports said Friday.

The proposal filed by TEPCO and METI was drafted with the assistance of nuclear experts from Toshiba's Westinghouse Electric Co, Babcock & Wilcox Co. and Shaw Group, who gained invaluable knowledge from the cleanup following the Three Mile Island nuclear crisis in 1979.

According to sources close to the mater, the proposal sets out to level damaged buildings and structures at the Fukushima Daiichi complex without causing any more contamination to leak and will utilize robots to remove radioactive rubble caused by hydrogen explosions and the earthquake and tsunami that pounded the facility on March 11.

The proposal, which states it will take around 10 years to remove contained nuclear fuel rods and spent rods in storage pools from the four reactors, will be revised and updated as needs dictate, the consortium said.

They also said work would be undertaken to improve the condition of soil contaminated by radiation leaks.

TEPCO and METI will also look at a proposal to be submitted by Hitachi Ltd., which plans to liaise with General Electric Co., Bechtel Corp. and other utility firms and nuclear experts in a rival bid to decommission the the four reactors.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:15 | 1167293 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

"They also said work would be undertaken to improve the condition of soil contaminated by radiation leaks."

Do you think they will use some kind of Pu vacuum cleaner to do this?  Maybe Oreck makes one?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:46 | 1167203 Plumplechook
Plumplechook's picture

Just in on NHK - temp in reactor 4 SFP now up to 90 degrees celcisus:


The Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, says the water temperature in the spent fuel storage pool at the No. 4 reactor in the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant has risen to about 90 degrees Celsius. It fears the spent fuel rods may be damaged.

TEPCO took the temperature on Tuesday using an extending arm on a special vehicle. It found the temperature was much higher than the normal level of under 40 degrees.

To cool the fuel, TEPCO sprayed 195 tons of water for 6 hours on Wednesday morning.

The company thinks the pool's water level was about 5 meters lower than normal, but 2 meters above the fuel rods.

TEPCO believes the water level is likely to rise by about one meter after the water spraying on Wednesday.

The company also believes temperatures rose after the loss of the reactor's cooling system.

TEPCO says high levels of radiation at 84 millisieverts per hour were detected above the water surface, where radiation is rarely detected.

The company plans to continue spraying and to analyze radioactive particles in the pool to determine whether the fuel has been damaged.

The storage pool at the No. 4 reactor has housed all the fuel rods that were in operation at the reactor due to massive engineering work there.

TEPCO has sprayed more than 1,800 tons of water on the No. 4 reactor using fire engines and special vehicles since the March 11th crisis. The company feared that fuel rods could cause evaporation of water and put workers at risk of exposure.

University of Tokyo Professor Koji Okamoto says the temperature of 90 degrees indicates that cooling is continuing, although some of the water in the pool may be boiling.

Okamoto says high radiation indicates the possibility of radiation leaks from damaged fuel, and called for the evaluation of water sampling to determine how the situation should be tackled.

The professor says that to prevent further damage to the fuel, it's important to continue cooling the pool while minimizing water leakage from it.


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:11 | 1167287 Bicycle Repairman
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Thanks for the information.  Just curious, how far do you think the Pu these reactors are spewing can travel? Fukushima? Tokyo?  Jet stream?

Thanks in advance.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:18 | 1167303 divide_by_zero
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A link to the Berkley Nuclear Monitoring site, under teh air sampling apparatus they use a Rigid brand industrial vacuum for air filter sampling 

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:40 | 1167374 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

If we rely on testing from a nuclear engineering school, and the results of their tests may eliminate the need for the school, what will the quality of the testing be?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:14 | 1167476 wisefool
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-Henry Ford. But engineers know going in they are expected to be peer reviewed like Doctors, even without the pay. So the majority are going to tell the truth even if that means they ending up a draftsman for a plumber putting bidet in a glass tower for an investment banker at goldman sachs. Those dudes make even more money than doctors and get peer reviewed by former GS employees who work at the FDIC, SEC, Treasury and IRS.

Somebody should actually go dig up Mr. Ford and put him on the investigation into the financial collapse. Another one of his famous quotes was "no problem is exceedingly difficult if you break it up into smaller peices" I.E. Who made money from both the run up and collapse? What was thier part? 

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 14:27 | 1169621 divide_by_zero
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This isn't some bullshit like the existence of AGW, the radiation and it's efects exist and will require study either way; cleanup or creation.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:04 | 1167614 avonaltendorf
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Unit #4 spent fuel is the least worrisome problem at Fukushima Daiichi. #1 is running hotter, no longer being monitored or data being hidden. No access to #2 and leaking radioactive water as fast as they pump it in. #3 was the MOX core, almost certainly a puddle of corium that breached the pressurized steel vessel (my guess).

The proposal to demolish the containment buildings without additional release of radioactivity is complete bullshit.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:44 | 1167204 tortola trader
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Al`Gore(bechev)???  Why, I believe he's busy getting a massage right now....

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:05 | 1167273 LostWages
LostWages's picture

Unlike Gore's massage, this story does not have a happy ending.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 19:45 | 1167208 Misean
Misean's picture

So, what has been confirmed? That the author believes that some information released by TEPCO proves a suspision the author has? That's it then?!?

Nice headline though...


Wed, 04/13/2011 - 20:47 | 1167390 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

"The firm known as TEPCO said its analysis of a 400-milliliter water sample taken Tuesday from the No. 4 unit's spent nuclear fuel pool revealed the damage to some fuel rods in such a pool for the first time, as it detected higher-than-usual levels of radioactive iodine-131, cesium-134 and cesium-137." These confirm an ongoing fission reaction.

Did you read that part of the article?  Do you think it indicates something else?  How do you feel about the detection of abnormal levels of radiation in children's milk here in the USA?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 21:23 | 1167508 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Go to the top an read my critique. None of those isotopes is evidence of a current criticality AT THIS TIME. 

If we see I-131 two months from now that would be evidence. Or I-134 now -  which has a half life on the order of an hour.

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:20 | 1167667 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Any thoughts on the isotopes present in American children's milk?

Wed, 04/13/2011 - 22:55 | 1167779 Stormdancer
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