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#219242 - 03/15/11 02:15 PM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: falcon5000]
MostlyHarmless Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 982
Loc: Norway
My frustration with mainstream media is growing. That is also an important lesson to be learned - In a major (or even a minor) SHTF scenario, don't expect much useful info from the media. Expect a distorted and highly aggravated view.

The situation is grave - but exactly how grave? Hard to tell. The japanese statements indicate that those who know are too busy to tell anyone, and those who are in contact with the media haven't got a clue.

According to the Japanese government, this is a level 4 accident where Tsjernobyl was 7. According to media, Andre-Claude Lacoste from the French Atomic commision (ASN) says this clearly is a level 6 accident. I'm not very good at french, but that statement does not seem to be backed up by the official ANS web site. Lacoste says the last barrier of one reactor is breached, which the Japanese supposedly denies.

All sort of speculations flourish in the media, and all sort of facts are taken out of context and blown way out of proportion. One example: One airline will measure its long distance planes from Tokyo to Europe for radiation. Now measuring is a sensible thing to do, but it isn't in any way significant, and clearly does not justify a major headline in the news.

Who has the correct info? Who to believe?


Edited by MostlyHarmless (03/15/11 02:17 PM)

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#219252 - 03/15/11 02:49 PM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: MartinFocazio]
Pete Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1372
The latest reports contain these words ...

"The crisis appeared to escalate late in the day when the operators of the facility said one of two blasts had blown a hole in the building housing a reactor, which meant spent nuclear fuel was exposed to the atmosphere."

If these reports are true - and we really have no idea these days - then spent nuclear fuel could be exposed to the sky. This could mean the release of some radioactive species (cesium, iodine) into the environment. While this is not a good development, I doubt that it's the catastrophe that the media are proclaiming.

The bottom line here ... is that giving the public the real facts is a lot better than being held hostage by the paranoia of the world media.

I notice, by the way, that the US Gov't has been completely tight-lipped throughout this scenario. So I'll ask again ... where is our OWN data on radiation levels? Can't we put a few ships and airplanes over the Pacific? It seems like an obvious move to calm peoples' concerns.

other Pete


Edited by Pete (03/15/11 02:50 PM)

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#219256 - 03/15/11 03:52 PM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: Pete]
unimogbert Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/10/06
Posts: 860
Loc: Colorado
There have been reports that helo aircrew from US ships have returned from flights with slight radioactive contamination.
So there IS monitoring going on. But compared to everything else, reporting on it is pretty insignificant.

Spent fuel exposed to the sky has variable possibilities.

OLD fuel would be no big deal. Yes, it's radiactive, yes it probably has some contamination on it, no, it won't kill all who gaze upon it.

Freshly removed fuel from the week before the earthquake would have significant decay heat left so the fuel could be a localized problem. (I'm not sure what the problem would be exactly.Probably both a dosage/exposure over time issue plus transferrable surface contamination. Don't pick up any stray fuel rods and take them home.)

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#219328 - 03/16/11 01:23 AM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: falcon5000]
Jeanette_Isabelle Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 2450
Loc: Somewhere in Florida
Originally Posted By: falcon5000
I lived over there for a year and they are a really good bunch of people.

When I was nine, I met a man raised by Japanese parents. I learned a lot from him. These are good people.

Jeanette Isabelle
_________________________
“Trust me, this is not gonna end well!” — Pleakley, Lilo & Stitch

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#219334 - 03/16/11 01:57 AM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: MartinFocazio]
Pete Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1372
"When I was nine, I met a man raised by Japanese parents. I learned a lot from him. These are good people."

Yes ... they are. I have never been to Japan, but I was tremendously impressed by the fact that there was no looting after that huge quake. I also think we all owe a great debt of gratitude to the workers at the nuclear plant - who have probably suffered significant radiation exposure and have also risked their lives to help their country and to try to fix this problem.


Meanwhile, we take a step closer to the real truth with the latest press realease ...

The Nuclear Industrial and Safety Agency estimated that 70 percent of the rods have been damaged at the No. 1 reactor.

Japan's national news agency, Kyodo, said that 33 percent of the fuel rods at the No. 2 reactor were damaged and that the cores of both reactors were believed to have partially melted.

"We don't know the nature of the damage," said Minoru Ohgoda, spokesman for the country's Nuclear Industrial Safety Agency. "It could be either melting, or there might be some holes in them."

I assume they are talking about the fuel rods in the reactors. And so couldn't it be possible that the moderator rods that were put in to stop the reaction might be partially ineffective ... if the fuel rods themselves are damaged or broken. That might explain the continued heat generation. And further, I now note that they are saying that they may have a hole in the reactor containment.

None of this makes me freaked out - even slightly. But I am glad that after 4 or 5 days we are getting a glimpse of the truth.

other Pete



Edited by Pete (03/16/11 01:57 AM)

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#219339 - 03/16/11 02:21 AM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: Pete]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Reports are coming in that they've just pulled out ALL remaining workers from Fukushima. So who's minding the store?

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#219344 - 03/16/11 03:17 AM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: LED]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 2909
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By: LED
Reports are coming in that they've just pulled out ALL remaining workers from Fukushima. So who's minding the store?


Yeah, seems like we're heading toward 'really nasty territory.'

Knowing the dedication I see in industrial facilities here, I'm guessing they had to more-or-less arrest and detain these guys to get them out.
frown

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#219349 - 03/16/11 04:13 AM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: dougwalkabout]
Arney Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: dougwalkabout
Knowing the dedication I see in industrial facilities here, I'm guessing they had to more-or-less arrest and detain these guys to get them out.

One of the few articles I've seen about the workers is this New York Times article. Among other factoids, it turns out that not all of the 50 skeleton crew are TEPCO employees, but include some soldiers, police, and fire fighters, too.

Doug, it seems you are correct about the comraderie and dedication of these utility workers. I guess some things transcend all cultures.

I certainly hope that the pull back is a short one, just to give radiation levels time to subside before they go back in. Because if the levels don't drop and they can't get back to manual cooling operations...

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#219352 - 03/16/11 04:20 AM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: Pete]
Eric Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 09/09/06
Posts: 323
Loc: Iowa
Originally Posted By: Pete
"
... And so couldn't it be possible that the moderator rods that were put in to stop the reaction might be partially ineffective ... if the fuel rods themselves are damaged or broken. That might explain the continued heat generation.


From all the available reports the control rods were deployed to stop the reactions as part of the initial quake response. The challenge with nuclear fission is that stopping the splitting of Uranium does not immediately stop the production of heat. In very simple terms, as Uranium atoms split (fission) unstable isotopes are created that will slowly degrade to stable atoms. This degrading process generates heat and ionizing radiation. Normal shutdown procedure for a BWR like Fukushima takes about 10 days, most of which is monitoring the cooling system.

The damage to the fuel rods occurred after the primary reaction (Uranium Fission) was stopped. Since the reactor core is damaged it is possible that the reactor geometry has changed in a way to permit some of the Uranium to begin to fission again. Without thermal information from the cooling system (temperature rise vs coolant volume) this would be difficult to determine and is not very critical to the efforts currently underway. Reactor geometry is very carefully planned and it is at least equally if not more likely that the damage will actually make it harder to sustain Uranium Fission within the core.

The longer they can hold things together and keep the cooling water flowing, the better, for everyone.

-Eric
_________________________
You are never beaten until you admit it. - - General George S. Patton


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#219357 - 03/16/11 06:13 AM Re: KI pills sold out in US [Re: dougwalkabout]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Originally Posted By: dougwalkabout
[quote=LED]Reports are coming in that they've just pulled out ALL remaining workers from Fukushima. So who's minding the store?


I've been reading some Twitter feeds from people in Japan who are talking with 'Nuclear and Industrial Safety Administration' and making general comments. They are saying that Fukushima has not been abandoned. They have told the people outside to get inside.

The following Twitter feed is pretty consistent with info updates.
http://twitter.com/#!/HirokoTabuchi
_________________________
Don't just survive. Thrive.

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