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the situation is clearly (but slowly) stabilising. As each day passes, the amount of thermal heat (caused by radioactive decay of the fission products) that remains in the reactor fuel assemblies decreases exponentially
The Japanese were very greedy and they used every square inch of the space. But when you have a dense placing of spent fuel in the basin you have a high possibility of fire if the water is removed from the basin," Andreev told Reuters.
World Health Organization warns against panic and uncontrolled use of iodine drugs, which is observed today in the world in relation to accidents at Japanese nuclear power plant. In the questions and answers devoted to the disaster, WHO experts point that potassium iodide and other iodinated substances are not "antidotes for the radiation." "They do not protect from any other radioactive substances than radioactive iodine isotopes," - said in a statement.
Originally posted by TheRedneck
reply to post by Erasurehead
I may be missing some of the finer points here. I was thinking entombment happened after the core had cooled substantially after decay had subsided.
The latest death toll numbers come as the International Atomic Energy Agency confirms that three reactors had partially melted down. Yukiya Amano, the head of the nuclear watchdog agency, says he plans on going to Japan as soon as possible.
Water is the key
To head off further damage, Tokyo Electric Power Co. is talking about adding water and boric acid into the reactors and the storage pools, from helicopters as well as fire trucks. The water replaces the liquid that's boiling off because of the fuel rods' residual radioactive decay heat, while the boric acid helps slow down the nuclear fission rate.
Physicist David Albright, a former U.N. weapons inspector who is now president of the Institute for Science and International Security, noted today on MSNBC that there's been a "slow bleeding" of radioactive pollution into the environment. The worst-case scenario, he said, would result in a release of radioactivity on a level that's "probably not as much as Chernobyl, but nevertheless a very significant release.
In the most extreme case, the Japanese might have to consider following the Chernobyl example and "dump sand or concrete on the open wound," Nathan Hultman, an energy policy expert at the University of Maryland, told me..