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(Fox News)   Japan is now trying solutions from the X-Men to stem the Fukushima leaks   (foxnews.com) divider line 33
    More: Scary, Fukushima, X-Men, Japan, Fukushima Daiichi, reactor building, Japanese Media, Tokyo Electric Power Co., Kyoto University  
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8113 clicks; posted to Main » on 10 Aug 2013 at 2:33 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



33 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-08-10 02:42:23 PM  
It is a beast of a problem.
 
2013-08-10 02:47:39 PM  
i.imgur.com

Radioactive ocean? Here comes Godzilla.
 
2013-08-10 02:49:53 PM  
I didn't see Godzilla in that picture even after reading the caption.. twice. I thought "what does that woman have to do with Godzilla?"
 
2013-08-10 02:57:58 PM  
'Ziller got's duhkampo!
 
2013-08-10 03:00:05 PM  

Eps05: I didn't see Godzilla in that picture even after reading the caption.. twice. I thought "what does that woman have to do with Godzilla?"


I kept thinking, "Silicone is the answer?"
 
2013-08-10 03:00:06 PM  

Eps05: I didn't see Godzilla in that picture even after reading the caption.. twice. I thought "what does that woman have to do with Godzilla?"


Jeez, same here. Except I was thinking, "day-um she has some nice teeters".
 
2013-08-10 03:07:30 PM  
Won't it pretty much take a nuclear power plant to do that much cooling?
 
2013-08-10 03:10:59 PM  
Also, that girl's not really that tall, the picture's just taken from a low angle. No need to call her Godzilla.
 
2013-08-10 03:20:18 PM  

Eps05: I didn't see Godzilla in that picture even after reading the caption.. twice. I thought "what does that woman have to do with Godzilla?"


Nobody ever expects Godzilla.
 
2013-08-10 03:32:44 PM  
Okay without getting into the fact that Tepco needs to be vigorously slapped back and forth until their next three generations have shaken baby syndrome..

This is ALMOST standard operating procedure. Freezing pipes for repairs where valves are not available to stop the water is done industry-wide, and not just in nuclear power. Pretty much any operation where you're moving a fark-ton of water and you need to do pipe maintenance or replacement and there's no valve convenient, you'll find freeze dams.

And oh my god are they a pain in the ass. Liquid nitrogen is the common method and dealing with that shiat requires a small fleet of people. When the bottles go on the elevator, no one can ride with them, so they have to have people on each floor blocking the elevator until the bottles get to their destination and are removed. The freeze seals have crews actively with the gear 24/7, which is a damn flying spagetti monster's worth of cabling across the area to wherever the lowest dose location is for these people to lurk.

And THEN all of that stuff has to come back out of the radiologically controlled area! So senior techs have to either shove it in a small article monitor but more often than not, this shiat has to be hand-frisked, hand wiped and the bottles WILL vent in your face if they get a chance to.

/saw that happen to a guy who was moving one of the bottles
//lucky for him he had his safety glasses on
///he had icicles in his mustache
 
2013-08-10 03:38:01 PM  
I see two monsters in that picture.

Oh, BTW there is something green in the background.

Reports are that nobody is guilty of anything per the Japanese courts.

Japanese are the biggest racists on the planet and are deeply Fascist by nature. They ARE NOT our friends.
 
2013-08-10 04:04:14 PM  

Eps05: I didn't see Godzilla in that picture even after reading the caption.. twice. I thought "what does that woman have to do with Godzilla?"


Me either. I didn't until I read your comment. I guess I thought it was a tree or something.
 
2013-08-10 04:13:27 PM  
Ringshadow: Freeze dams in piping is pretty common as they make for less chance of a primary leak from failed valve seals, seats, glands, packing and gaskets, but for this they are talking about freezing the earth surrounding the site essentially making a giant tank made out of what's akin to permafrost. The technology has been used before to temporarily stabilize the ground while tunneling under at risk structures. For that they use huge portable refrigeration plants with the coils buried in the ground.

My first question would be what is the temperature of the water when it reaches the "Permafrost" and what would be done to overcome that. Secondly, to what depth are they going to make this wall as there is no way that I can think of to easily make the bottom of the "Tank" so they would have to at least get it down a few feet into a non permeable layer of ground such as clay or rock to form some sort of seal and lastly what are they going to do when the tank eventually overflows or the ground is so saturated with water that it places structures on the ground inside the "Tanks" at risk of foundation failure or liquefaction in the next earthquake. I'm assuming that they will be building sumps to pull contaminated water out of and treat it but that capacity has to be at least about 10% greater than what they are pumping into keep it cool now just to allow for rainfall.
 
2013-08-10 04:34:37 PM  

Ringshadow: /saw that happen to a guy who was moving one of the bottles
//lucky for him he had his safety glasses on
///he had icicles in his mustache


That's what happens when you blow a seal.
 
2013-08-10 04:38:34 PM  
The Ekati diamond mine in the Northwest Territories of Canada uses a freeze wall to keep the water of the surrounding lakes out of the mine operations.  They should definitely talk with the guys that built that!
 
2013-08-10 04:39:05 PM  
Radioactive Ass:

...
I will bow out to someone who clearly understands this process more than I do. I only know it from the "What I have to do deal with these people and get their gear out" stance, being radiation protection and all.

Frankly, I really don't know the scope of the leak. I tend to be cynical about such things given that the reaction to 'contaminated water leak' tends to be extremely overblown by the media, and the fact that the measurement was given in becquerels, which is just an asshole measurement really only used for the ordering of radioactive sources in the industry (same with the curie). Either way, as near as the numbers got crunched in another thread, they seem to have had a tablespoon or two of cesium get loose.

Which don't get me wrong, that sucks because it's a bioaccumulating element as far as I know, but for god's sake. People collect antique radium bottles and fiestaware.

/very cynical of any news from Fukushima due to to the critical levels of BS that surround it
 
2013-08-10 05:48:32 PM  

Ivo Shandor: Ringshadow: /saw that happen to a guy who was moving one of the bottles
//lucky for him he had his safety glasses on
///he had icicles in his mustache

That's what happens when you blow a seal.


i.imgur.com
 
2013-08-10 05:49:07 PM  
Bequerels are a pretty standard measurement of emitted radiation, and it is the normal unit of measure from a geiger counter. And as far as the quantities go, there is a lot of isotopes being emitted. Fukushima was responsible for the largest release of radioactive noble gases ever, and has released more cesium than chernobyl. Three reactors worth of inventory, weighing a few thousand tons of radioactive material, is still unaccounted for. They have no idea where it is or how to get close enough to verify any theory. Every day, thousands of gallons of water are running through the wreckage and into the ocean and aquafers. This is the most massive industrial disaster we have ever seen, and it has been ongoing for three years with little intervention. This is not a few teaspoons of cesium, but a massive mess with vast quantities of dozens of isotopes leaking everywhere with stunningly little effort going in to the containment and cleanup. Most of it is going in the ocean, which you would think would be a concern to a fish and seaweed eating culture but so far they haven't done much besides accept the consequences for inaction.
 
2013-08-10 06:05:21 PM  
Wish they could send some of that permafrost down here to Tokyo. It's unbearably hot.
 
2013-08-10 06:18:16 PM  

Jones_Boy: Bequerels are a pretty standard measurement of emitted radiation, and it is the normal unit of measure from a geiger counter. And as far as the quantities go, there is a lot of isotopes being emitted. Fukushima was responsible for the largest release of radioactive noble gases ever, and has released more cesium than chernobyl. Three reactors worth of inventory, weighing a few thousand tons of radioactive material, is still unaccounted for. They have no idea where it is or how to get close enough to verify any theory. Every day, thousands of gallons of water are running through the wreckage and into the ocean and aquafers. This is the most massive industrial disaster we have ever seen, and it has been ongoing for three years with little intervention. This is not a few teaspoons of cesium, but a massive mess with vast quantities of dozens of isotopes leaking everywhere with stunningly little effort going in to the containment and cleanup. Most of it is going in the ocean, which you would think would be a concern to a fish and seaweed eating culture but so far they haven't done much besides accept the consequences for inaction.


Uh huh. Sure.

Now tell me how it's worse than Chernobyl, that's been sitting there decades after their god damn reactor had a steam-related excursion then caught on farking fire and the fire spread graphite-laden smoke (a carcinogen before it was radioactive) across half the globe.

Yes, this farking sucks but tone down the drama, Sarah Bernhardt. Unless you're currently in Fukushima working the problem, I'm reasonably confident they have a better idea of the situation than you do.

/yes becquerels is a standard measurement
//it's also easy to fear monger with because the numbers get so large, so fast
///the only farks I'm giving right now is the Fukushima event is costing the USA industry millions upon millions preparing for the same thing
////I ask you: why do plants in Kansas, Arkansas, and Nebraska etc need tsunami preparation? Flood, yes, but tsunami?
 
2013-08-10 06:27:20 PM  
FTFA: "Officials recently acknowledged that an estimated 300 tons of radiation contaminated water, which is continuously pumped into the reactors in an effort to cool them, pour into the sea every day.


/notokwiththis.jpeg
 
2013-08-10 06:42:59 PM  

Eps05: I didn't see Godzilla in that picture even after reading the caption.. twice. I thought "what does that woman have to do with Godzilla?"


The funny thing is that I really didn't get the joke because I thought it was just a bad picture of Ali Larter, whose character in Heroes could freeze things.

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2013-08-10 07:13:19 PM  

Ringshadow: Now tell me how it's worse than Chernobyl, that's been sitting there decades after their god damn reactor had a steam-related excursion then caught on farking fire and the fire spread graphite-laden smoke (a carcinogen before it was radioactive) across half the globe.


Someone explained it to me as if you took all of what has been released so far from Fukishima and could somehow magically convert it all into Radium it would fit inside a 2 liter bottle with plenty of room to spare (assuming that about 30 trillion Bq's have been released so far). To put it another way, if you put two dimes in your hand that's about how much radium would have been released every week (by weight, by volume it would be even less than that). That is to say about 5 Curies per week on average.

It's just as disingenuous to describe it that way (2 dimes worth) as it is using 190 billion Bq's per week to make it sound as bad as possible.
 
2013-08-10 08:18:43 PM  
I would say this is worse than Chernobyl in one very real and specific way. It is still uncontained, radioactive materials are still being spread, and the site is a severe mess which is vulnerable to many sorts of accidents (the reactor with the spent fuel pond that's all sort of farked, that they reinforced strikes me as a disaster that still is waiting to happen). They claim that they plan to clean it up eventually but as far as I can tell they can't even contain what they have. It could leak nasty crap for decades and there is still a lot of spent fuel and other nasties on site that could catch fire or otherwise become very seriously nasty if anything goes wrong.

Chernobyl happened all at once, then they poured a shiatload of concrete on it. As far as I know, there is no plan to clean it up, they are just going to put on a new containment and try to keep it sealed for eternity (good luck with that, but at least it's not actively spewing waste right now). It spread more nasties over land and populated areas, but when it was over it was over.
 
2013-08-10 08:48:37 PM  

Radioactive Ass: Ringshadow: Now tell me how it's worse than Chernobyl, that's been sitting there decades after their god damn reactor had a steam-related excursion then caught on farking fire and the fire spread graphite-laden smoke (a carcinogen before it was radioactive) across half the globe.

Someone explained it to me as if you took all of what has been released so far from Fukishima and could somehow magically convert it all into Radium it would fit inside a 2 liter bottle with plenty of room to spare (assuming that about 30 trillion Bq's have been released so far). To put it another way, if you put two dimes in your hand that's about how much radium would have been released every week (by weight, by volume it would be even less than that). That is to say about 5 Curies per week on average.

It's just as disingenuous to describe it that way (2 dimes worth) as it is using 190 billion Bq's per week to make it sound as bad as possible.


Thank you for the good descriptions, my good sir!

Five curies per week is not good and realistically, they need to start moving to find the leaks and block them. There are entire industries that excel in stopping massive leaks. This might be a time when the fossil industry can help the nuclear industry, realistically. Hiring leak-seal crews and letting them burn their yearly dose in a few jumps to start patching the leaks might be cost effective: they walk away with money and can't do any other nuclear work, the building is more sound.

/in other words treat them like divers or steam generator jumpers
 
2013-08-10 09:41:00 PM  

Ringshadow: Thank you for the good descriptions, my good sir!

Five curies per week is not good and realistically, they need to start moving to find the leaks and block them. There are entire industries that excel in stopping massive leaks. This might be a time when the fossil industry can help the nuclear industry, realistically. Hiring leak-seal crews and letting them burn their yearly dose in a few jumps to start patching the leaks might be cost effective: they walk away with money and can't do any other nuclear work, the building is more sound.

/in other words treat them like divers or steam generator jumpers


I think that it's easier for most people to wrap their minds around five curies a week vs  billions or trillions of Bq's. It's the difference between measuring someones weight in stones vs milliters of water. Sure one is more accurate than the other but they can both get across the same idea with one being much easier to understand than the other for most people.

And the word that your looking for for workers to do what you're suggesting is "Sponge" (an informal nuclear industry term for radiation workers whose job it is to go into high radiation areas and do a small amount of work and leave when they reach their personal limit IIRC).
 
2013-08-10 10:17:24 PM  
i.imgur.com
 
2013-08-10 10:50:54 PM  

rurdy: Eps05: I didn't see Godzilla in that picture even after reading the caption.. twice. I thought "what does that woman have to do with Godzilla?"

I kept thinking, "Silicone is the answer?"


i2.cdn.turner.com
What was the question?
 
2013-08-10 11:11:36 PM  
30TBq/week is the release rate now. During the meltdown, roughly 3 Etta-Bq (x10^18) was released. Of just Caesium137, one of dozens of released isotopes. Thats nearly twenty thousand dimes of caesium by your own equivalence. Each one of those dimes, by the way, would deliver an adult a lethal dose of radiation in less than a millisecond. Of course, it isn't in dimes but spread across the northern hemisphere in measurable amounts. (http://www.atmos-chem-phys.net/12/2313/2012/acp-12-2313-2012.pdf and http://www.rdss.info/librarybox/mrr/MRR2011/PAPERS/04-15.PDF)

You can't send people in to fix the leaks. The cores melted down and are exposed in the flooded basements of the reactors. They couldn't get specially built remotely operated vehicles into there as it is too radioactive. People would be dead long before they reached the areas the leaks are in, and the place is a sieve anyway at this point.

They tried pumping grout, similar to the kind used to seal oil well casing, into some areas with limited success. There may be solutions to help the place, but it looks like TEPCO is unwilling or unable to afford the massive international effort it will take to implement them.
 
2013-08-10 11:45:56 PM  

Ringshadow: Five curies per week is not good


I did some looking into it (and did some quick back of the napkin type calculations) and Chernobyl is estimated to have released anywhere from 50 million to 3 billion Curies (that's 1/3rd of the total nuclear fuel involved at the high end) into the atmosphere... that 50 million number is from the Soviets who were never really forthcoming about the situation.

To put that into perspective 5 curies per week is somewhere in the range of 192 thousand years of constant release at current levels in order to compare it to Chernobyl contamination levels (until the sarcophagus was built) at the low (Soviet) end.

I'm not downplaying the seriousness of the situation but comparing it to Chernobyl is scare mongering at its worst.

/plus I'm always irritated when people mix up contamination with radiation
//dog poop on your shoe is contamination
///the dog poop smell from the dog poop on your shoe is radiation.
////if you don't smell dog poop then you're probably fine. But odds are that you still have some miniscule traces of dog poop on your shoes no matter how clean they are
 
2013-08-11 12:33:41 AM  

Jones_Boy: Thats nearly twenty thousand dimes of caesium


I clearly pointed out that using that measurement was just as disingenuous as using billions or trillions of BQ's were (which you were happy to go into because apparently you think that "Hey, I can go there and nobody will notice!") . That is where my claims of fear mongers come in by using numbers that nobody outside of the industry understands and then using those mind boggling numbers to scare people. The situation in Japan is not good, however even at its worst it's not at Chernobyl levels nor is it likely to ever come close to it by a factor of 100. Groundwater contamination. while important at a local level, is not going to be anywhere as much of a problem as airborne contamination (which as I understand it is not an issue now). Groundwater can be contained. Air? Not so much.

Bq's are good for people who work with the stuff. What should be used for public consumption (in my opinion) is how many mrem or rem that the exposure may result in based upon where they were and for how long and then compare that to natural exposure and then extrapolate that into expected extra deaths per 100,000. This is something that I haven't seen yet. There is already some solid science behind this yet it is missing from the narrative.
 
2013-08-11 12:40:04 AM  
Was anyone else expecting Sentinels after that headline? I mean if anyone's gonna use giant robots to solve a problem that doesn't seem like giant robots would help at all, it's Japan.
 
2013-08-11 08:28:19 AM  
Radioactive Ass, of course I used Bq.   It is the SI standard unit for radiation emissions.   It is the unit that every scientist and expert uses when talking about things like radioactive emissions.   It is the unit that is used in the scientific papers I linked to.   Yes, the numbers gets big.   Especially when you are talking about emissions from three nuclear reactors simultaneously melting down right next to each other in ways humans have never before seen.   The emissions ARE big.   If people want to be willfully ignorant about the units, that is their problem and not the scientific community.   Not everything can be dumbed down and pre-digested for the masses and still have any relevant meaning.

And thanks for sharing your uninformed 'back of the napkin' calculations.   If you look at the first paper I linked, written by scientists and published in a recognized scientific journal, it clearly states that airborne radioactive cesium emissions in the first week were roughly 50% of Chernobyl and the radioactive xenon emissions were twice that of Chernobyl.   And yes, air can be contaminated by gasses and small particles.  Thats why we have things like a pollen count, clean rooms.   This isn't a cherry picked paper, and you can easily find hundreds with similar measurements.   The disasters ARE comparable.   And those numbers don't include the massive amount (greater than atmosphereric, it seems) that is leaking into the ocean.

The big differences between the two, from a human health perspective is that Chernobyl deposited most of the contamination on land.   Fukushima mostly at sea.   Fukushima did manage to contaminate some land as much as Pripyat.   Scary part is, those parts of Japan weren't evacuated and are still active farms (way to go, guys).   Another difference is, we can avoid growing crops near Chernobyl but we can't stop the fish we eat from swimming near Fukushima.   That, and both fish and seaweed tend to bioaccumulate radioactive isotopes.   The health affects here in the US may not be very significant, but I wouldn't say that about the west coast of Japan where people eat sushi and nori.
 
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