High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Mar, 2011 08:40 pm
@oralloy,
As of 10 am local time March 21 they had topped up the spent fuel pools and temps were stabilized in both pools and reactors. Radiation levels dropping:
http://www.jaif.or.jp/english/news_images/pdf/ENGNEWS01_1300671507P.pdf First link on continuously updated site: http://www.jaif.or.jp/english/
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 04:45 am
@High Seas,
A bit more good news:

Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:44am EDT

TOKYO, March 21 (Reuters) - Power cables have now been connected to all six nuclear reactors at Japan's tsunami-damaged Fukushima Daiichi power plant, operator Tokyo Electric Power said on Monday.

The last two reactors to be hooked up to power from the main grid on Monday were reactors No.3 and No.4, the two most badly damaged units, company officials told a briefing.

The company, though, is checking for damage to the plant's reactor cooling systems and other plant machinery before attempting to power them up. It is operating equipment using grid power at reactor No.5 only, one of the least damaged reactors, the officials said.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/03/21/japan-power-idUSWNAS151020110321
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 06:16 am
Mon Mar 21, 2011 7:50am EDT

TOKYO, March 21 (Reuters) - Firefighters postponed spraying Japan's badly damaged nuclear reactor No. 3 with seawater on Monday after a plume of grey smoke was seen over the structure, the government said.

Smoke began to rise from the plant's No.2 and No.3 reactors on Monday, just as authorities had begun to show signs of progress in its efforts to avert nuclear disaster at the site. Japan's nuclear safety agency later said the smoke had stopped rising over the reactor.

The plant operator said it did know what caused the smoke.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/03/21/japan-smoke-firefighters-idUSWNAS153520110321
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 06:36 am
Hope this can continue as a lead in to a sustained shut down.
I sw a segement on BBC about how TEPCO had a dismal reputation for omitting "incident reports" and were possibly guilty of lying about an earlier incident at anothr facility.
Japan wont abandon nuke power but I hope their culture can change so that the inscrutability and downplay of issues are exchanged for a more competent engineering and siting culture.
The relationship of Japanese industry (the regulated) and the govt (the regulators) , is a bit too cozy for my comfort.
Same thing pretty much in China and TAiwan.
I recall that in several pollution control projects that getting caught was more of a dishonor than was actually being responsible for environmental disasters
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 10:12 am
@farmerman,
That's the surprising news about Japan; they have the technical and scientific know-how, but there's a break in the chain that allows lies to be used to cover up these weaknesses.
0 Replies
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 11:43 am
@farmerman,
Do you think Japan should rebuild the destroyes cities and towns along the coastline or the railroad trsacks from which trains were washed away? This is where the real casualties in this natural disaster occurred.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 11:53 am
@georgeob1,
well, what luck have we had doing the same sensical thing? The outer banks of NC are one of the least stable areas wrt storm tracks and overwash, yet they are building the hell out of em. Individual properties will always be subjet to market fees for insurance (SOme places wont be iunderwritten). However, when it comes to major projects of infrastructure (including nuke plnts), I think siting criteria must be imposed.

I never implied that US is somekinda paragon for propwer land use and siting. We do the same dumb things as any other civilization.
SInce train lines dont have a regional exudate that can kill, or the fact that poqwer lines can easily be repaired, I dont have as many problems with locating a railroad in a tsunami risk area(mowtly because we have warning technology and we can rebuild easily). A nuke plant, atsa different.
georgeob1
 
  2  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:01 pm
@farmerman,
It appears that hundreds of Japanese were killed on trains that were swept away. There have been no fatalities associated with the Nuke plant failures and by all accounts there aren't likely to be any.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:11 pm
@georgeob1,
Except for those 50 volunteers that have tried to keep the leak from getting worse.

We can hope they will be okay.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:14 pm
@georgeob1,
lets take a mort table look. If trains are insured, the max real liability could be computed. In a nuke accident, you must agree that its damned difficult to estimate the casualty losses from such comparisons.

Did you see the value of the Chernobyl casualty losses? They are quite sizeable and werent arrived at until several years AFTER the evnts.

INsurance companies just dont like to speculate and their businesses are based on statistics.


IM only now seeing the beginning effects in the food chain for example.

We on the EAst Coast live with the knowledge that LAs Palmas has and will again slide off and cause a monster tsunami that would probably destroy Miami Savannah, Charleston, Wilmington NC ,Oceana Va and maybe as far N as NYC. DO we factor this in to our siting? (ALgermissen numbers are silent on non seismic inundation events).

Youve brought up a really good point though. Why are not tsunami potentials given a weighted siting criterion just like seismic activity? Tsaunamis are formed by things other than just earthquakes (Although earthquakes lead the pack)
farmerman
 
  0  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:23 pm
@farmerman,
Heres the foundation article that the ALgermissen analyses are based upon. Seismic activity is quantitated by X/Z intensity and return frequencies, and these numbers are factored into siting. (Most of anything quantitative is lost by the politically derived factors of safety).
These seismic risk zones for the US are constantly being updated and refined.

However, we have seismic risk zones that are going UP and there are nuke plants in that zone. (eg Yankee and Duke Powers plants).

http://www.mhest.com/spotlight/earthquakes/articles/Seismic_Risk.pdf
0 Replies
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:37 pm
@cicerone imposter,
cicerone imposter wrote:

Except for those 50 volunteers that have tried to keep the leak from getting worse.

We can hope they will be okay.


It is very unlikely that got more of a dose than that associated with a summer at Lake Tahoe.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:49 pm
@georgeob1,
georgeob1 wrote:

It is very unlikely that got more of a dose than that associated with a summer at Lake Tahoe.


So you do think that it was hysterical when the NRC sharply raised its warning to American citizens in Japan, urging them to evacuate an area within 50 miles of the Fukushima complex; and Japanese authorities had ordered an evacuation within about 12 miles of the plant?
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:51 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
I believe the warning came from ther State Department, not the NRC. Yes I believe it was hysteria.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 12:53 pm
@georgeob1,
Well, in that case, Japanese authorities now got even more hysteric about it, and widened the zone to 30km (19 miles).
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 03:34 pm
@georgeob1,
georgeob1 wrote:
cicerone imposter wrote:
Except for those 50 volunteers that have tried to keep the leak from getting worse.

We can hope they will be okay.


It is very unlikely that got more of a dose than that associated with a summer at Lake Tahoe.


My best guess is that they'll die of radiation-induced cancer because of this, but probably when they are already old.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 05:36 pm
@oralloy,
I think thyroid cancer is the most common from radiation exposure.
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 06:25 pm
@cicerone imposter,
They're not going to get that - the thyroid stops absorbing iodine after it's had a massive dose, which they already got by taking pills. Anyway they won't have to put up with much worse as - now they finally restored power - they're gathering radiation-proof robots from far and wide for the cleanup. 4 were shipped out from iRobot, a military contractor in Bedford, Mass., and they have plenty of radiation-proof robots made in Japan; a "raBot" prototype:
http://i.i.com.com/cnwk.1d/i/tim/2011/03/19/Rabot1.jpg


cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 06:26 pm
@High Seas,
HS, Thanks for that info. It was only my impression without knowing the details.
0 Replies
 
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Mar, 2011 06:48 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:

INsurance companies just dont like to speculate and their businesses are based on statistics.

Not true for extremely (annual) low-probability events, or when the composition of the underlying distribution varies over time, as e.g. in demographics. Reinsurers calculate the probability of an earthquake Richter 7.3 or higher in the Tokyo/Yokohama region annually - in fact there are entire bond issues that pay no interest but will pay principal in full in case that happens; the probability is currently calculated at 35% sometime before 2050. I can't find any math modelers worrying about tsunamis in Miami, but there's concern about a mega-tsunami wave of 50+ ft crashing into the Pacific northwest whenever the Cascadia fault decides to readjust itself with a Richter 9+ as it did in 1700. Do you know a wonderful book called "The Orphan Tsunami of 1700"?
http://bks0.books.google.com/books?id=XowKAQAAIAAJ&printsec=frontcover&img=1&zoom=1&edge=curl&sig=ACfU3U1eBee-l7VqjMvD-yY5-AUfBrsGjA
Quote:
One winter's night in the year 1700, a mysterious tsunami flooded fields and washed away houses in Japan. It arrived without the warning that a nearby earthquake usually provides. Samurai, merchants, and villagers recorded the event, but nearly three centuries would pass before discoveries in North America revealed the tsunami's source. The Orphan Tsunami of 1700 tells this scientific detective story through clues from both sides of the Pacific. The evidence uncovered tells of a catastrophe, a century before Lewis and Clark, that now helps guide preparations for future earthquakes and tsunamis in the United States and Canada. http://pubs.usgs.gov/pp/pp1707/
 

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