Spent fuel Rod fire could be worse than Chernobyl

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posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 12:37 PM
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reply to post by Whisper67
 


If indeed the spent fuel rod pool is on fire, (and I am really starting to think it is in a least 1 reactor) The spraying on of water will do nothing more than make steam and doom those spraying it..

Studies have determined that a spent fuel fire could not be put out once started




posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 12:48 PM
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reply to post by okiecowboy
 


Two eactors are already breached and a spent MOX fuel rod pool is smoking, so it makes it pretty much useless heroics...especially with one truck.

Time for helicopters with concrete dump buckets.



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 12:53 PM
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reply to post by Regenmacher
 





Two eactors are already breached and a spent MOX fuel rod pool is smoking, so it makes it pretty much useless heroics...especially with one truck. Time for helicopters with concrete dump buckets.


I agree, I feel this is just a "feel good" measure..I mean they have to look like they are trying at least..water is not the answer at this point..



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 12:59 PM
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How volatile are the spent fuel rods? Do they just burn or can they become more explosive?

....or would all of them combusting simultaneously be like a huge explosion anyway?



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 01:02 PM
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reply to post by Curio
 


well It's not expected to be explosive, just a fire that can not be put out releasing tons of radiation..
the guess is That 1 spent fuel fire will release more radiation than all the nuke testing that has been done in the western hemisphere combined



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 01:12 PM
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reply to post by okiecowboy
 


Well done okie and thanks. S & F. That's an incredible amount of info you've put together in one place.



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 01:21 PM
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They should immediately begin flying in long trains of helicopters loaded with concrete, emptying them over the radioactive zones, and smothering each reactor under concrete 50 feet thick.



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 01:24 PM
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reply to post by Vinterzorg
 


Actually I think they should have already started that a couple of days ago, I fear at this point they are just hanging on to false hope..

have you ever seen the clips from Chernobyl, what the effects were on those helicopter pilots and crew? or the one of the helicopter crash due to pilot being overcome with radiation....chilling to say the least



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 01:43 PM
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Originally posted by okiecowboy
reply to post by Curio
 


well It's not expected to be explosive, just a fire that can not be put out releasing tons of radiation..
the guess is That 1 spent fuel fire will release more radiation than all the nuke testing that has been done in the western hemisphere combined


That is because in nuke testing, a lot of the radiation is "spent" immediately in the chain reaction for the explosion. What remains of the fallout is what is not used up during the reaction and attaches to smaller particles that carry the dust and radioactive debris further out.

With spent fuel rods that are burning, it is a pure fission reaction without the radiation being "spent" in an explosion, but rather just emitting in every direction. One of the crappy things about physics is the law of thermodynamics, and in that law, it says that heat will RISE, so the heat being generated from the fire is helping to carry those radioactive particles into the atmosphere. This is the major concern with the fires in the containment pools. Since there are several of them, this could be far worse than Chernobyl when all is said and done.

I don't think anyone could have been prepared for something like this.... you can plan for anything, but plans are just that... an expected outcome. It's what you don't expect that will always ruin your plans, no matter how good they sound or look on paper, and this is clearly what has happened here, even with some of the brightest minds in the world working on it.

~Namaste



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 01:56 PM
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reply to post by okiecowboy
 


Excellent work okie.
S&F for you.

You put together an excellent overview of the concerns with the spent fuel rods and why we should all pay close attention to what is happening with them.

~Namaste



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 02:02 PM
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reply to post by SonOfTheLawOfOne
 





One of the crappy things about physics is the law of thermodynamics, and in that law, it says that heat will RISE, so the heat being generated from the fire is helping to carry those radioactive particles into the atmosphere.



Well said...and I agree...that is the major flaw in those that are saying this will be no where like chernobyl...
the amount of hear rising, and the amount of smoke still rising from all the fires in the area will be more than enough to get the radiation into the far reaching wind currents

and let's not even talk about all the seawater run off that is making it's way back into water cycle



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 02:21 PM
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reply to post by okiecowboy
 


Keep in mind, radioactive particles decay, the danger comes in the form of fallout (dust particulate that is itself irradiated)

Even if those rods become fully exposed and melt down, the radiation is mostly a concern for Japan. If we get fires (which could easily happen with all those spent fuel rod pools losing water), or a badly timed explosion during a meltdown, then we're talking a Chernobyl style disaster.

People bandie around Chernobyl without understanding the differences. With Chernobyl, there was an explosion while the reactor was on, sending a plume of radioactive dust something like 30,000 feet into the air.

These reactors were powered down during the quake so it's not the same scenario but boy are we darn close to it.

The spent fuel pools are freaking me out, on top of the reactors, the limited containment around them is potentially breached and they are having trouble cooling them.

Well formatted thread and posts, lotsa information in this one.



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 02:29 PM
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Originally posted by okiecowboy
reply to post by SonOfTheLawOfOne
 





One of the crappy things about physics is the law of thermodynamics, and in that law, it says that heat will RISE, so the heat being generated from the fire is helping to carry those radioactive particles into the atmosphere.



Well said...and I agree...that is the major flaw in those that are saying this will be no where like chernobyl...
the amount of hear rising, and the amount of smoke still rising from all the fires in the area will be more than enough to get the radiation into the far reaching wind currents

and let's not even talk about all the seawater run off that is making it's way back into water cycle


Excellent point as well....

Maybe we need to start talking about this more.....because while the Pacific is an enormous place for radiation to dissipate, Japan is a fishing country and there are tons of seafood that come from there. Japan is second in the world in fish production, just behind China. Here in the US, we will likely need to be very mindful of anything fished from the waters on the eastern side of Japan and possibly, a majority of Pacific fish depending on how bad things get.

I eat a lot of seafood so I wonder how this is going to impact things, especially with today's news that food prices in the US rose almost 4% last month.

~Namaste
edit on 16-3-2011 by SonOfTheLawOfOne because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 02:52 PM
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reply to post by phishyblankwaters
 





People bandie around Chernobyl without understanding the differences. With Chernobyl, there was an explosion while the reactor was on, sending a plume of radioactive dust something like 30,000 feet into the air
[/quote

As I said in my post..the Explosion isn't as relevent as you think...the heat rising and the amount of steam released and mixing with the smoke plume already in place will do the same job as the explosion did...

plus factor in the Mox fuel...

and your right there is decay...the half life of plutonium is something around 24,000 years]



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 03:08 PM
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US nuclear agency chief says no water in spent fuel pool at Japan plant; Japan denies it


www.newser.com...


If NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko is correct, this would mean there's nothing to stop the fuel rods from getting hotter and ultimately melting down. The outer shell of the rods could also ignite with enough force to propel the radioactive fuel inside over a wide area.


Japan's nuclear safety agency and TEPCO are both denying loss of water from the Fuel Pool in Unit 4.



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 03:25 PM
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could they drop one of these 'mini nuclear bombs' that we keep hearing about on the site?

basically like how they put out a oil fire by creating a bigger boom?

would dropping a nuke just destroy everything there, sure it would be nuclear, but is a bomb more contained than this slow leak?

i have not studied nuclear fission/fusion since college! its amazing how i gotta go back and learn all this all over agin.



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 03:29 PM
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reply to post by fltcui
 

I really hope they are telling the truth this time and were lying before when they said that the spent fuel rod pools were on fire in the live briefings..



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 03:31 PM
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reply to post by dantanna
 


I doubt if that would work...It would either
A. make the effect of the bomb bigger than you could possibly imagine
or
B. just further spread the material



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 03:44 PM
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reply to post by SonOfTheLawOfOne
 


Radiation will effect our food but all of our food is already toxic. The mercury saturation of larger predatory species especially. I would say that every single person on earth has dozens of harmful chemical poisonings in their body right now. Hell, we use radioactive fertilizer, cobalt irradiation food sterilizing, hormones, antibiotics, arsenic in chickens...the list goes on and on. Why worry now? From the time of first mutation to diagnosis of cancer from a toxic substance could take as long as 25 years. Odds are that whatever is going to kill you in the end, already has.



posted on Mar, 16 2011 @ 03:47 PM
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What an excellent post OP, well done.

I just read on the BBC news website that they are planning for a "joint op'" with the USA to fly a Global Hawk UAV over the site to take photographs of the insoide of reactor #4 building on Thursday...

Given that the helicopter water dump failed due to radiation levels, and strong winds, and the USA statements about the spent-fuel-rod-storage now being acknowledged as a critical issue, I am seeing a pattern of very many signs that things are in a very bad way there.

What perplexes me further is that we are still receiving so many conflicting and sketchy 'sound bites' of information.

Here in the UK I have heard various 'experts' briefing us and the media in apparently independent interviews, yet in which not one to my knowledge mentioned anything about the spent fuel rod storage being a factor or likely to have been damaged in any of the explosions, or affected by the problems with coolant/plumbing integrity - why? Did they genuinely ALL not understand the construction/arrangement of the plant/building (in a way it has taken ATSers a few days to work out? Is it just me or does something not sit right there?

As this thread makes clear, there are perhaps MORE reasons to be concerned about the integrity of spent-fuel rod storage in the affected buildingS, and that should surely have been clear to the 'experts' from the minute they knew of the first explosion documented on video and camera?

However, all of the discussion was carefully framed around concern for the integrity of the reactor core - yes very, very concerning - but as I understand it if the storage tanks were breached by any of those explosions - or indeed caused them, then the 'experts' should surely have been clarifying, or AT LEAST acknowledging the hazards and concerns there from that point - it could have made a difference to people in Japan, and perhaps sped up the international response?

The Japanese gov, and TEPCO are clearly feeding out positive lines and fractured/sketchy info - like the news about the power cable - sounds positive, but in light of what WE know, it could very well have NO effect if there is already an exploded spent fuel rod tank, partly spread in bits around a building and partly burning in remains that nobody can get near?





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