Saturday, May 14, 2011

Water Torture at #Fukushima: Reactor 3's Temperature Remains High Despite Added Water, and Contaminated Water in Reactor 2 Trench Is Rising

TEPCO is pumping 15 tons of water per hour into the Reactor Pressure Vessel (RPV) of the Reactor 3, as the temperature inside the reactor remains elevated.

Yomiuri Shinbun (1:11PM JST 5/14/2011):


TEPCO announced on May 14 that the temperature continues to rise in the Reactor Pressure Vessel (RPV) of the Reactor 3, and TEPCO increased the amount of water being injected by 3 tons per hour to the total 15 tons per hour starting this morning.

That's 360 tons per day. (No need to remind the readers that the fuel inside this Reactor is MOX fuel.)

According to TEPCO's press release on May 14 before they announced the increase of water being injected, TEPCO was going to switch the water injection line from the fire extinguishing line that they had been using to the regular (repaired) feed water line, as they suspected a leak in the fire extinguishing line. However, the temperature continued to rise, and now they are using both lines and increased the amount of water from the fire extinguishing line.

In the meantime, the highly contaminated water in the trench from the Reactor 2 is RISING despite the water is being transported to the Central Waste Processing Facility.

According to Yomiuri Shinbun (in Japanese, reporting the press conference; 1:53PM JST 5/14/2011), the level of highly contaminated water in the trench from the Reactor 2 has risen 4 centimeters since the work to transport the water to the Central Waste Processing Facility started on April 19. 5,070 tons of water have been already pumped from the trench.

TEPCO is injecting 7 tons of water per hour to cool the RPV of the Reactor 2, according to the above Yomiuri article.

No need to remind the readers that the Suppression Pool of the Reactor 2 is damaged.


Anonymous said...


Leak the impossible leak …Ooze the improbable ooze.

I imagine most people aren’t aware of all the small scale slow motion nuclear disasters unfolding across the globe not just in Japan. Large sections of the US are going to become radioactive “wildlife reserves”. Hanford, Rocky Flats, Savannah River all of these well known facilities are part of a vast network of facilities that were used to produce bombs. Few people may know Fernald Ohio, Ashtabula, Ohio made the feed materials for the whole process to run. The Gaertner Pit Key Lake Mine in Northern Saskatchewan, Canada in turn supplied them. Radiation in the open pit could exceed 7000x background in (1986). Canada played a key part in the US defense effort not only did Key Lake Mine operate a yellowcake mill this material was refined at a facility in Blind River, Ontario. The refining process end product was a liquid known as “O.K. Liquor”. This material was converted to uranium hexafluoride gas at Port Hope, Ontario and then transferred to a Gaseous Diffusion (G/D) facility in Piketon Ohio. Few people know G/D consumes vast quantities of electricity and released huge quantities of freon. From time to time they have “who could have known “ accidents too.

In July 1988, contamination, which included detectable levels of technetium-99 and trichloroethylene, was found in an offsite drinking water well north of the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant. To address immediate risks, the Department of Energy extended a community water line as an alternative water supply to residences with contaminated wells while it pursued long-term remedial actions. Two areas of ground-water contamination, or plumes, have been identified offsite of the plant (that is, Northwest Plume and Northeast Plume) with trichloroethylene levels reaching 30,000 parts per billion and technetium-99 reaching approximately 1000 picocuries per liter at offsite locations.

Based on the complex nature of waste (for example, radionuclides, dense nonaqueous phase liquids) present at the Paducah Plant, the future use of the site may principally be Industrial. The land may never be appropriate for certain uses, such as Residential.
After considering all the above factors, the Department of Energy Site Office at Paducah considers a combination of Industrial and Recreational use as the most likely future scenario for the site.

In 2002, the Paducah enrichment plant emitted more than 197.3 metric tons of Freon into the air through leaking pipes and other equipment. This single facility accounted for more than 55% of all airborne releases of this ozone depleting CFC from all large users in the entire United States in 2002. Due to the lack of additional manufacturing of Freon since 1995, the U.S. Enrichment Corporation is currently looking for a non-CFC coolant to use. Likely candidates [...] would still remain a potential concern in relation to global warming and climate change.

Anonymous said...

Robbie001 sez:

This situation is really starting to look like something straight out of "Fantasia". It reminds me of the out of control the flood scene in the Mickey Mouse version of the "Sorcerer's Apprentice". Too bad TEPCO doesn't have a Master Grand Wizard to save the day at the last minute imagine how the story ends without one.

I think The Sorcerer's Apprentice is a perfect
representation of TEPCO all full of themselves in their dreams while back in reality the world is sinking under the weight of their hubris.

Walt Disney - Fantasia - Mickey The Sorcerer's Apprentice: (flood scene @ 6 min mark)

netudiant said...

Robbie001 is entirely correct in terms of the additional contamination sites gradually becoming health hazards.
However, human memory is short and radiation is invisible, plus the effects are very slow to appear.
The consequence is that people will increasingly ignore the contamination.
Having spent time in Blind River, there is almost no community awareness of the risks they face from radiation wastes in their community. The mines are largely closed and in fact, the major mining town of Elliot Lake was made into a retirement community to take advantage of the large stock of empty houses left by the miners.
So the more likely outcome is a gradual lowering of the health standards for radiation exposure anywhere, as more people wind up living in contaminated areas.
Japan will once again be a pioneer helping to set the new standard.

Anonymous said...

Robbie001 sez:

This is probably why you don't hear much about the US nuclear industry's foray into commercial spent fuel reprocessing in West Valley, New York. Old Uncle Robbie isn't afraid to to tell. Don't let people shine you on about how spent fuel reprocessing cleans up waste, it actually makes a lot more of it.

"A Brief History of Reprocessing and Cleanup in West Valley, NY

November 2007


West Valley, New York is the site of the first and, to date, only commercial reprocessing plant in the United States. After beginning operations in 1966 with a theoretical capacity to reprocess 300 metric tons of spent nuclear fuel per year, the facility processed a total of 640 tons of waste in six years before shutting down in 1972. In that time, it transformed West Valley into a radioactive waste site, ultimately accumulating over 600,000 gallons of high-level waste in onsite storage tanks. After years of delay, legal disputes, and waste treatment and billions of dollars in federal expenditures, stabilization of the high-level waste under the West Valley Demonstration Project (WVDP) was completed in 2002, but all of it remains onsite. The total cleanup, including low-level waste removal
and decontamination, is expected to take 40 years and cost over $5 billion".,%20NY.pdf

"Plutonium Recovery from Spent Fuel Reprocessing by Nuclear Fuel Services at West Valley, New York from 1966 to 1972"

"DOE Delays 10 More Years on Reprocessing Waste Cleanup; Could Leave Nuclear Waste Buried at West Valley"

"Nuclear and hazardous wastes are buried in unlined trenches on two sites at a former privately operated nuclear fuels reprocessing facility alongside Cattaraugus Creek north of the village of West Valley in Cattaraugus County."

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