Skip to comments.Factbox: Experts on explosion at Japan nuclear plant
Posted on 03/12/2011 7:46:44 AM PST by SteveH
Factbox: Experts on explosion at Japan nuclear plant
March 12, 2011
(Reuters) Radiation was leaking from an unstable nuclear reactor north of Tokyo on Saturday, the Japanese government said, after an explosion blew the roof off the facility following a massive earthquake.
The development has led to fears of a disastrous meltdown. Here are comments from experts about what might have happened.
PROF PADDY REGAN, PROFESSOR OF NUCLEAR PHYSICS AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF SURREY
"It looks as if the coolant pumps had initially stopped working. They shut down automatically when the reactor shuts down, but there is a backup system running off a diesel generator -- it looks as though that's the bit that failed.
"As a result there is no way of pumping heat out of the reactor, so it has to cool naturally. If the reactor gets too hot, in principle this means the fuel rods can melt - but it looks unlikely this has happened to any great extent in this case.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Once again, Reuters is wasting our time.
Those analysts seem to know more what they were talking about than the talking heads and reporters who’ve been covering this.
These commentators are experts.
They make it appear there is no hope foe mankind because of this tragic accident and that "those in charge are being silent about and won't talk to them about".
So what blew up, Paddy?
It’s hard to get intelligent info with all the hype. Thanks for posting this.
When major real-time events are happening in the world, CNN and Reuters consistently offer best coverage, simply because they have more contacts on the ground.
such a great comment.
Thanks for posting - good perspective from experts. Most of what’s being reported in the MSM is overblown and often incorrect.
Assuming the reactor containment vessel holds, far from being evidence of the dangers of nuclear power, it can be held up as an example of how safe WESTERN nuclear reactors built in the 1970s are/were.
Of course modern reactors with far more operational safety features and earthquake proofing are even MORE safe than the one in Japan that survived the fifth largest earthquake in recorded human history.
Well, they ARE rats after all...
Sadly, that won't make a difference to the anti-nuclear crowd.
On the positive side, it keeps the international media preoccupied while the Japanese go about the grunt work of salvaging what’s left out of this awful mess.
On the negative side, it will bring in a whole other layer of bureaucracy and it may kill a few hundred more people and take a few square miles of territory off the map of habitable Japan, which includes a North-South road that might or might not have been useful in transporting supplies from the less affected south to the North-East.
- any explosion at a nuclear power plant is not good,
- the situation is not at all under control,
- expand the evacuation zone and prepare for a meltdown,
- Al Qaeda is likely taking notes.
Well, it would be safer if the power plants were coal fired, but the enviomentalists nixed that. As it would have been simple to clean up and stop a blown out oil well on land, intead of five miles out to sea.
Perhaps for the sake of the planet, we should ban enviromentalists?
I heard somewhere and I hope it is true that reactor core pressure is decreasing, which means that the situation amy be stabilizing. I think the operational issues boil down (pun not intended) to why the diesel backup generators failed all at once. That has less to do with nuclear fission and radiation, and more to do with maintenance and possibly design of ancillary non-nuclear equipment IMHO.
So what blew up, Paddy?
That’s what I wanna know.
Thanks SteveH,great info:)
Well, read the article at the link.
Very informative and reassuring.
From my engineering vp, who designed reactors for the Navy:
“If pressure is going up in the containment building, that suggests that steam and probably fission fragments are being released, which further suggests serious trouble. This is what happened at Three Mile Island except their accident was bad level indicators combined with bad decisions. The Tokyo reactor and the cooling systems may have been damaged by the quake, affecting their reactor coolant systems, maybe causing a loss of coolant accident (called a LOCA in the industry). A LOCA is the most dangerous type of nuclear reactor accident there is. I hope that is not what has happened.
If there is a critical break in the coolant system or the reactor vessel, they may loose too much coolant to keep the reactor core cool. Depressurization of the primary coolant system will release massive amounts of steam and if the coolant systems are out of commission, there may be no effective way to get more coolant into the reactor. Even after a reactor is shut down, the latent heat from the continuing nuclear reactions needs to be removed. If they can’t remove that heat, there is a risk of core meltdown. I don’t mean to be alarmist. But a release of fission fragments to the public is a serious indicator of more trouble.”
Okay...what to make of this....Stratfor Code Red
The diesel generators failed cuz the cost of diesel is too high and they couldnt afford to refuel.
I read on another thread that luckily an inspection showed that the containment unit was intact.
Your intelligence report is basically saying that there is a real possibility of another Chernobyl event, this time in Japan. Not good - pray for Japan.
I live in Washington State 30 minutes from the Ocean. Just so everyone knows, we are buying Iodine this morning.
A bad CDO is like having a crooked loan officer at a bank. It happens. But it's containable in that case. When the "bank" is a structured security, regulation and oversight are another matter. And being new vehicles, there was no adequate regulatory structure (and precious little moral foundation) in place to deter abuses. It was, after all, a runaway bull market. And easy money makes for bad morals.
The Greenspan Put was not a good idea, because it created a sense of infallibility in the marketplace.
Fox reporter located in Japan just said that Japanese tv is running a cartoon demonstrating how to protect yourself from radiation fallout.
the Chenobyl director said this is not Cherobyl
different design, different safety features = no Chernobyl
If the system fails worts case and there is a melfdown, the facility is designed to collapse and stop the reaction. Then the material is contained.
If it can’t be rebuilt, might have to encase it and seal off a couple square miles of Japan for the long run.
But-speculating about Chernobyl Dux or stirring people up to imagine a mushroom cloud is so much more exciting.
nuclear, not financial meltdown
Yeah, but his tagline asked.
Redundancy in safety systems is usually a good idea.
I know what a CDO, but I appreciate your input very much.
Your tagline seems to indicate you have a lot of enemies...at least in your own mind.
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