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“Japan’s nuclear industry is desperate to avoid admitting the quake crippled the reactor as it would necessitate tough new measures to strengthen the remaining plants.”
The Fukushima Daini Nuclear Power Plant, is a nuclear power plant located on a 150 ha (370 acres) site in the town of Naraha and Tomioka in the Futaba District of Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. The Tokyo Electric Power Company runs the plant.
All reactors in the Fukushima II Nuclear Power Plant are BWR-5 type with electric power of 1,100 MW each (net output: 1,067 MW each).
The reactors for units 1 and 3 were supplied by Toshiba, and for units 2 and 4 by Hitachi. Units 1–3 were built by Kajima while the unit 4 was built by Shimizu and Takenaka. The design basis accident for an earthquake was between 0.42 g (4.15 m/s2) and 0.52 g (5.12 m/s2) and for a tsunami was 5.2 m.
On March 11, 2011, a 9-meter-high tsunami struck the No. 2 plant, while the No. 1 plant was hit by a 13-meter-high tsunami.
According to the head of the plant, the plant was near meltdown.
originally posted by: Purplechive
TEPCO Diluted the Suppressant...
Sigh...they diluted the mixture with 100 parts per water instead of only 10 parts...
This narrative was called into question as sailors who had served on the Reagan at that time filed suit, first in San Diego court and then against the Tokyo Electric Power Corporation or TEPCO, for damages relating to health problems they blamed on the contamination. Currently, there are more than 50 plaintiffs and their attorney says he expects the number to grow. Congress recently directed the Department of Defense to look into potential health impacts from exposure during Operation Tomodachi. Stars & Stripes reported the story with this arresting image of a line of sailors pushing soapy water across the Reagan’s flight deck.
First off, the adjective “potential” perhaps conveys a false idea of the level of confirmation that the Reagan was contaminated. The Reagan is nuclear-powered, and chock-a-block with radiation detectors. Indeed, the CBS report at the time acknowledged that the radiation detectors were triggered. So the radiation contamination was “actual” not “potential” unless one wants to engage in word-parsing that there were no radiation detectors on the surface of the flight deck, so there was no confirmation of radiation contamination in the particular locations where the sailors were pushing their brooms at that time.
The Stars & Stripes photograph confirms that there was a concern over particulate contamination; otherwise they don’t send out the guys with the brooms. The likely contamination of the Reagan by particulate radioactive material raises another extremely expensive, difficult, and perhaps insoluble problem. I am not aware of current advances in decontamination but, unless revolutionary breakthroughs have occurred, complete decontamination of a vessel exposed to particulate radiation is impossible. In fact, the inability to decontaminate navy vessels guided the evolution of US military strategy.
A plaintiff in the TEPCO case claimed that the USS Reagan had been denied approval to dock in Japan or South Korea after contamination and had spent over two months at sea before returning to San Diego. I would expect those two months were spent in extensive and laborious decontamination efforts that got most of the radiation; but with particulate radiation you can never get it all, and there’s a chance that it can be ingested and cause serious illness.
USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) is homeported in San Diego and undergoing a Planned Incremental Availability (PIA) maintenance period at Naval Base Coronado.
At 100 meters away it (the helicopter) was reading 4 sieverts per hour. That is an astronomical number and it told me, what that number means to me, a trained person, is there is no water on the reactor cores and they are just melting down, there is nothing containing the release of radioactivity. It is an unmitigated, unshielded number… The transcript then contains discussion of health impacts that could come within a matter of "10 hours. It's a thyroid issue."
Tepco and the Navy contend the Reagan did not receive a high enough dose to warrant serious concern. But Japan, South Korea and Guam deemed the carrier too radioactive to enter their ports.(Confidential communication, Sept. 17, 2012).
Sailors who were onboard the Reagan have claimed that they were drinking contaminated desalinated seawater and bathing in it until the ship’s leadership came over the public address system and told them to stop because it was contaminated. They claim the ventilation system was also contaminated. Furthermore, some claim they were pressured into signing forms confirming they had been given iodine pills when none had been provided.
Environmental Compliance Cost Recovery or ECCR is part of each rate designed to recover costs associated with the environmental controls mandated by state and federal regulations. This tariff was put in place on January 1, 2008, and is a percentage of the customer's bill.
Advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) is an architecture for automated, two-way communication between a smart utility meter with an IP address and a utility company. The goal of an AMI is to provides utility companies with real-time data about power consumption and allow customers to make informed choices about energy usage based on the price at the time of use.
all emphases mine.
Earthquake main reason for failures?
Meanwhile, evidence is growing that Unit 1’s meltdown was initiated by the earthquake and only exacerbated by the ensuing tsunami. Bloomberg reports that a radiation alarm inside Unit 1 went off before the tsunami even arrived, indicating coolant already had been lost and fuel melting had begun. If true, this could also require a reassessment of how quickly reactors can melt down. Tepco said May 16, that radiation levels inside Unit 1 were measured at 300 MilliSieverts/hour within hours of the earthquake - meaning that fuel melting already had begun. For melting to have begun that early, coolant must have been lost almost immediately. It’s now believed that fuel melted and dropped to the bottom of the containment - melting a hole into it, within 16 hours. Most likely, a major pipe carrying cooling water to the core was damaged by the earthquake, which should lead to a new evaluation of the ability of key reactor components to withstand seismic events.
Radiation leak before Tsunami?
Only a few days after the revelations about the failure of the cooling before the tsunami hit the plant, another revelation, with possible grave consequences, hit the media. A radiation monitoring post on the perimeter of the Daiichi plant about 1.5 kilometers from the No. 1 reactor went off at 3:29 p.m., minutes before the station was overwhelmed by the tsunami that knocked out backup power that kept reactor cooling systems running, according to documents supplied by the company. The monitor was set to go off at high levels of radiation, an ofﬁcial said.
“We are still investigating whether the Until recently Tepco said the plant stood up to the magnitude-9 quake and was crippled by the tsunami that followed. This early radiation alarm has implications for other reactors in Japan, one of the most earthquake prone countries in the world, because safety upgrades ordered by the government since March 11 have focused on the threat from tsunamis, rather than earthquakes.
So it's becoming more and more clear that, contrary to earlier assumptions, the reactors were already severely damaged by the earthquake before the tsunami hit the reactors. And that is despite the fact that the earthquake "did not exceed design base values signiﬁcantly", according to an important Dutch nuclear lobbyist of the Technical University Delft Jan Leen Kloosterman, before news of damage before the tsunami even hit the reactors became public. He put it this way in a meeting on May 13: "If seismic data can be conﬁrmed, practically all damage at Fukushima-Daiichi would have to be contributed to the tsunami." That would suit them well. Gunderson: "This wasn't, at Fukushima, that big an earthquake. It was, out at sea a nine, but by the time it got to Fukushima, they should have been able to ride out that storm, at least the seizmic issues of it. But what that says is that what we have been relying on in analyzing these plants may not be working. Two out of the four plants developed cracks from an earthquake and they should have been able to get through this."
On May 24, Tepco conﬁrmed ﬁnally what everybody except Tepco and the international pro-nuclear community already knew: that fresh data from Units 2 and 3 indicate that fuel rods in those reactors are “in a similar state as that in reactor number 1”. That is: fallen into a lump at the bottom of the pressure vessel. Three melt downs conﬁrmed.
Large offshore earthquakes have occurred in the same subduction zone in 1611, 1896 and 1933 that each produced devastating tsunami waves on the Sanriku coast of Pacific NE Japan.
That coastline is particularly vulnerable to tsunami waves because it has many deep coastal embayments that amplify tsunami waves and cause great wave inundations.
The M 7.6 subduction earthquake of 1896 created tsunami waves as high 38 m and a reported death toll of 27,000.
The M 8.6 earthquake of March 2, 1933 produced tsunami waves as high as 29 m on the Sanriku coast and caused more than 3000 fatalities. Unlike the recent magnitude 9.0 earthquake, the 1933 earthquake did not occur as the result of thrust faulting on the subduction-zone plate interface, but rather within the Pacific plate just seaward of the Japan Trench.
It's possible, but I wouldn't say it's a smart move, if only for the serious health risks any long-term plant personnel would likely endure to keep it's undamaged reactors operational.
originally posted by: zworld
From a recent TEPCO press release;
"TEPCO has been tackling initiatives to double its productivity and to win in the competitive environment as well as fulfilling its commitment towards Fukushima revitalization."
What the hell is meant by Fukushima revitalization. Are they going to try and get units 5 and 6 up and running?
originally posted by: ScientificRailgun
In my opinion, they're better off doing what cleanup they can, then shuttering the whole damn site.