Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Translation of TEPCO Video on March 14, 2011 When Reactor 3 Exploded: Steam Explosion, or Hydrogen Explosion? Or Both? (Or Just Confused?)

In the video, Plant Manager Yoshida seems to be saying it was "steam explosion" (水蒸気爆発) in Reactor 3. When a TEPCO senior executive (perhaps Mr. Komori, from the voice) talks to NISA, he is saying "possible hydrogen explosion". The official account is that it was a hydrogen explosion.

The video gets surreal halfway toward the end, when someone who sounds like then-Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano is heard talking about controlled rolling blackouts.

My translation of the sound as heard in the video:

"Video from March 14, 2012, around 11:01AM, explosion in the Reactor 3 building"

(at 0:05 -)
About the dose level, it is 39.406 microcurie/hour.

(at 0:20, the upper right screen for 1F (Fukushima I Nuke Plant) shakes.)

(at 0.58 -)
HQ?: Well, right now, 3-meter tsunami warning issued for Hamadori [coastal Fukushima], can you hear us, 1F? 3-meter tsunami warning has been just issued for Hamadori. Please pay attention.

(at 1:13 - )
Plant Manager Yoshida at 1F: HQ! HQ!

HQ: Yes, this is HQ.

Yoshida: HQ! HQ! It's bad! It's bad!

HQ: Yes!? Yes?

Yoshida: Reactor 3, probably steam explosion, it just happened!

HQ: (in a weak, almost disappearing voice) Alright... (someone else) O..OK.. Emergency communication...

Yoshida: (overlapping the HQ person) Happened at 11:01AM.

HQ: 11:01AM. (totally unexcited,) Roger. We will make emergency communication...

Yoshida: OK!

HQ: That, that is the same as Reactor 1 [explosion], isn't it?

Yoshida: Yes, in the building, inside the Anti-Seismic Building here, we can't tell, but a side-way shake, clearly different from an earthquake, came, and there was no after-shake like in an earthquake. So I think this is an explosion, just like what happened in Reactor 1.

HQ: OK. Roger.

In Yoshida's background at 1F: Parameters! Somebody look at the parameters of Reactor 3! Call the central control room for Reactor 3 and find out!

Yoshida: And the workers on the scene, will take shelter, take shelter!

HQ(?): We'll notify people immediately. Emergency communication...

(From 2:17 to 2:25, yelling and shouting in the background, probably at 1F. Someone at the Off-Site Center - upper left screen - sits with folded arms.)

Yoshida: Well, NISA [Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency] and Prime Minister's Office...

In Yoshida's background: The environment inside this room [the emergency response headquarters on the 2nd floor of the Anti-Seismic Building at Fukushima I], no change in gamma rays and neutrons. Report over.

Yoshida: ... keep them connected, real-time.

Yoshida's background: Hey! (beep)

(2:40, someone is heard making a speech. It sounds like Yukio Edano, then-Chief Cabinet Secretary and the administration spokesman)
"... causing troubles for you. However, the actual power suppl..." (cut off)

(HQ? 1F?): To Mr. Takeguro...., directly... [Takeguro, TEPCO's representative at PM Official Residence]

(3:10 Voice that sounds like Mr. Edano comes back)
" you prepare, to minimize your inconvenience..."

HQ (Probably Mr. Komori?, executive director, making a phone call to NISA): At 11:02AM, (was that 11:02?), at 11:02, in Reactor 3, there was a possibility of hydrogen explosion, we've been just informed by the plant. It's the first report...

At 1F (Yoshida, overlapping Komori): Please take shelter, make sure everyone is safe, take shelter. Then, measure the dose rate carefully and report. Now, everyone, please gather closer, and make sure everyone is OK.

Yoshida: And there's also a tsunami warning. As a precaution, please withdraw [to shelter] as soon as possible.


At 1F: Uh... as soon as you confirm, to the [worker] welfare unit, please report to the welfare unit once people take shelter. Please report to the welfare unit.

HQ (TEPCO's then-president Shimizu): This is Shimizu, head of the [HQ Response team]. Inform the related parties and report back right away...


On checking the news articles from March 14, 2011, it was indeed Yukio Edano, doing the press conference as Chief Cabinet Secretary, at 10:55AM, and right at that moment, speaking about the planned rolling blackouts (Asahi Shinbun, 3/14/2011).


Anonymous said...

This kinda reminds me of that satirical script I wrote.

Florian said...


thank you for translating, I really appreciate :)

~ flo

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

Anon, yes it does. Yours was a hit with the Japanese, too.

Florian, you're welcome.

Anonymous said...

Oh, thank you very much for translating and posting my satirical script. I'm glad Japanese people liked it.

Thanks for translating this video, too.

Anonymous said...

So Yoshida reports it as a steam explosion right from the start. But from the very instant it happened, HQ changed his words.

Of course what you don't see from this video is that they had been fighting overpressure inside of R3 for the previous 24 hours and at one point the logs record pressure of over 1000 psi. So Yoshida knew it was a steam flash and also knew the core had probably ejected from the very first moments.

THIS IS THE SECRETE THEY ARE HIDING FROM THE WORLD. This is the secret they are hiding from Japan.

You can actually see the round hole where the core ejected in the satellite pictures just after the event. The hole is in the wreckage of the steel roof structure just to the right of the Spent fuel pool - which is still intact and holding water. It's a bit difficult to make out because the structure collapsed back down over the building in a heap, but it's xactly the diameter of the reactor core.

This is also why the USS Ronald Reagan carrier battle group of several ships, which was coming to Fukushima Daichi at full speed, turned around and left the area. In all my years, I've never seen an aircraft carrier battle group abort an important mission. This is the most powerful fighting machine on earth. The only reason they would do that is if the ship was in immediate danger of total loss.

The reason they have made this fact secret is this: Reactor #3 had recently been loaded with what was reported as 32 MOX fuel assemblies.

MOX is fuel is constructed with a mixture of Uranium and weapons grade plutonium oxide between 6 -9%. The plutonium oxide increases the temperature and efficiency of the reactor significantly which boosts power generating output. However the plutonium can create significant "hot spots" and danger if it is not mixed very carefully. So they grind the plutonium and uranium into nanometer scale powders, so they can be mixed precisely.

The nanometer powders are then pressed into a "pellet" and loaded into the zirconium tubes.

If the steam explosion of #3 ejected uranium and more importantly plutonium oxide in nanometer powder on March 14th at 11:01 am - then that powder would have traveled very all over.

Plutonium oxide is probably one of the most carcinogenic substances ever tested. A tiny amount inhaled by mammals will lodge in the body and cause cancer within 18 to 36 months. Interestingly, plutonium in food and water is much less dangerous to the body.

JAPAN - YOU NEED TO KNOW WHETHER PLUTONIUM OXIDE IS IN THE AIR YOU ARE BREATHING. Indeed everyone in the world needs to know exactly where that plutonium went. The other radiation sources are bad. This one is devastating.

And that is exactly why they are hiding it so carefully.


Nancy said...

Thanks. Full translation of these exchanges makes much more sense than the little one line bits the media has put out.

Anonymous said...

While there are certainly elements of hydrogen and steam explosion, in Fuku and in previous blowups/melt such as Chernobyl, SL1, etc., they are outcomes of a physical state. The physical events are the real story behind the story. Here is the real story of unit 3-

Anonymous said...

Terrahertz - sorry you are correct in your statement that the physical events are the real story - but you are dead wrong in your analysis.

First there is no possibility the explosion came from the sfp - it is a physical impossibility for an open pool like that to create a vertical plum like we saw in the explosion. That explosion came from a deep vertical shaft - like a gun barrel.

The third paragraph in your analysis is wrong. That's because your markings on the picture are wrong.

Now let's correct them:

1. Notice the picture is not taken from directly above the reactor building - see that the south wall is slanted from left to right - that means any of your projections err to the right. move them to the left.

2. The south (left) edge of the SFP is much closer to the south wall than you show it. Add the projection error and you should have your rectangle outline much closer to the edge of the wreckage - leave about the width of the vertical columns.

3. The reactor core is not centered in the building. So your circular projection is incorrect. You can easily see this in the recent pictures of unit 4 0 with the entire upper part removed.

It is skewed to the south and to the east slightly. once you get the SFP box in the right place, move the circle to the south, leaving a gap of about 6-7 feet between the SFP and the reactor. Now move it East (down) about 10 feet. Now the reactor core projection is in the right place.

4. Now notice that the roof structure - which opened up like a sardine can, then flopped back down - you can hear it drop down in the explosion video- Notice it's attached to the center column, but at the west end of the building is shifted to the south about 10 feet.

5. Now look directly below your newly located core hole, and notice the hole in the roof structure you were looking for - it's distorted slightly, because the structure isn't laying flat, and it's skewed slightly, and there are a couple of stray beams that jut out into the middle of it, , but it's there - In the view from above #4 looking down on #3, it's plainly obvious.

Notice there isn't a curved beam in the roof structure anywhere, but that spot. Those are heavy beams that were explosively formed in a perfectly round circle - exactly the diameter of the Reactor Pressure Vessel.

6. During operation, they do not leave the crane above the core, and yet it appears to be above the core in this photo. #3 was in operation at the time of the earthquake. They don't leave it above, because they don't want it to fall and damage the primary containment. So the crane must have fallen either to the north or to the south in the explosion to land in the spot it did.



Anonymous said...

TerraHertz here. That 'Anon' above that posted a link to my article wasn't me, but I'm happy they did.

James, I disagree.
"it is a physical impossibility for an open pool like that to create a vertical plum like we saw in the explosion. That explosion came from a deep vertical shaft - like a gun barrel. "

The SFP *is* a deep vertical shaft. And with the sequence as I understand it, the three sequential explosions would be occurring deeper and deeper into the pool.

Addressing your points:
1. The green outlines are not 'off due to projection slant.' The SFP rectangle is drawn at the level of the operations room floor, outlining the clearly visible edges of the SFP, so far as it can be seen under the rubble. The circle identifying the location of the reactor well is an approximation as the well can't be seen directly and I've never found any accurate plans for Unit 3. Doesn't matter though, as there's nothing like a punch-through hole through the girders in that general area.

2. The SFP is NOT close to the edge of the building. Take unit 4 as example - you can see in through the blown-out sides of the building how far the wall of the SFP is from the building edge. Quite a way. If the SFP was further 'down' in the photo, explain how come much of it looks like 'floor with thin rubble cover'.

3. I know the reactor well is not in the building center. But I don't know _where_ it is exactly, hence drew the circle larger than the actual reactor well. It's _somewhere_ in that area. But it's still pretty big. For the explosion's upwards jet to have come from the RPV, the pressure dome would have to have blown upwards. That's very big - it's the same as the yellow dome thing parked off to the side of Unit 4's top floor, and now very visible. There's no possible candidate for a hole that big in the girders. Besides, if the pressure dome blew out, WHERE IS IT NOW? It would be visible somewhere (or as a hole that size in an adjacent building), and it isn't.
Incidentally it would also have been visible in the video of the explosion, as a large rounded object at the leading edge of the upwards jet. But it's not there.

4. The 'roof structure' - consists of two parts. On top there's a concrete slab, poured over the steel framework and corrugated sheets. During the initial H explosion the concrete slab and corrugated sheets departed upwards, while the steel girder framework probably moved very little. It's thin (so not much force bearing on it from the H explosion) and strong (can resist that force.) Only subsequent events moved the girder framework significantly. Those events would be:
A. Cutting by a high velocity upwards jet of steam, rubble and bits from the SFP during the repeating prompt criticalities there.
B. The edge structural support columns falling over sideways or outwards as they are ripped away by the wall panels blowing out.
C. Late in the sequence, large chunks of roofing slab falling back down and striking the girders. Most of the 'rending, crashing' sounds in the video recording are related to this stage. Most of the girder mesh damage at the North side (RH in the photo) is due to this, as (from the video) a lot of the larger slab bits fell off to that side of the jet.

Which incidentally supports the 'jet was from the SFP' theory, since the SFP is to the South side of the building, hence the jet isn't centered under the roof slab. The bulk of the roof slab (bits) would be 'boosted' off to the Nth, because they originated to the Nth of the jet axis. Bear in mind that the initial boost to the roof slab was a relatively evenly distributed overpressure due to a H explosion in the main volume of the building. The roof began moving upwards fairly evenly, then got a hard 'punch' under its South end.

(continued below)

Anonymous said...

(TerraHertz, Part 2)

In Unit one, you can see that the roof slab remained fairly intact, despite the H explosion there. It just jumped up, then fell down like a wet blanket over the objects on the operational floor. The same would probably have resulted in unit 3, except for the 3 subsequent 'neutron pulsed steam explosions' in SFP #3.

5. Nope, I don't see what you're claiming to see. There is no candidate for a 'hole in the girders' that could have been produced by the huge pressure vessel lid blowing through it. And... I think you are deliberately lying, in claiming you see one. Which makes you a... something beginning with S and ending in L.
There are plenty of curved beams, mostly explainable due to late-stage impacts from falling concrete, and related major deformations of the grid.
The only 'mysterious total absence' of girders is at the SE corner - over the SFP.

Incidentally, a couple of other minor observations on the visible explosion sequence:
* Initially, there's a burst of orange fireball sideways to the right of the explosion origin. I had wondered about how this appears to get 'sucked back inwards'. I think I get it now. The fireball would be from the initial H explosion, blowing out through wall panels. Then very rapidly the first criticality in the SFP forms an upward moving steam jet _behind_ the visible fireball. At the base of the jet this will act to suck surrounding air inwards. Kind of a venturi pump effect. So the fireball really was sucked back inwards.

* Why does there seem to be a predominance of the corrugated formwork sheets in the light rubble around the SFP, compared to elsewhere?
I think this too may be related to the 'venturi pump' effect. As the roof slab was breaking apart, the light, high-surface-area sheets were sucked into the most rapidly upwards moving column of the SFP jet. The concrete roof fragments tilted and 'slid' away from the jet, falling first. (You can see them in the video.) The metal sheets ended up fluttering downwards more or less vertically from their position in the jet. So they mostly fell in the area of the SFP - where the jet originated. And on top of the pulverized concrete rubble, since they fell slower. The video doesn't continue long enough to see them fall, even if they were large enough to see.

6. And yet, the crane _is_ above the area of the reactor well. Well golly. Not just the gantry either, but the actual trolley (you can see the cable drum), which looks to be right over the approximate area of the well. Perhaps they were doing some work at the time?
Not important, except so far as the crane's presence there further proves that nothing ejected out of the reactor well.

Anyway, although the criticalities in the SFP were a terrible thing in many ways, I'm very glad the MOX-containing reactor core wasn't blasted about the surrounding countryside. Sigh... instead we probably have a MOX-containing corium blob melting down through bedrock right beside the Pacific Ocean. Terrific.

Here's an article about why Unit 3 reactor contains MOX fuel. Thanks Obama, you murderous lying shit.
21,000 Lbs of Plutonium Was Sent to Japan. Where is it?

Oh, and it's also Obama that has been wildly expanding the employment of web shills in recent years. Did you know that, James?
Is there any limit to the poison one man can spread?


Atomfritz said...

Thank you again, EX-SKF for this highly interesting documentation.

Here a different translation from a WSJ blog:

Anonymous said...

Terrahertz - I stand by my analysis and you are wrong, sorry.

First, the spent fuel pool is not a tube, but a box. It's 45 feet by 45 feet and 45 feet deep. Put some fireworks in a metal box and see how they explode out of it - it will come up in a "reverse V" shape. That's not a mushroom cloud.

Anyone who understands explosives knows that it is physically impossible that the #3 explosion came from the Spent fuel pool.

If you won't accept this fact, then you simply are not accepting the facts of the matter.

Now, regarding the projection error, I'm not going to argue it, because it is relatively small - however I'm correct regarding the location of the SFP and the reactor and the hole I describe does exist. Perhaps you can see it better from this angle:


Anonymous said...

Now that you have a chance to find the hole where the core ejected, let me address a couple other of your comments/questions.

First regarding roof structure. #1 and #2 are a different design than #3 and #4. #1 had a concrete roof, but the walls were simple metal panels above the operating floor. Indeed they removed one of the metal panels in #2 to release the hydrogen. #3 and #4 were all concrete walls and roof.

Also the overall building size was different - #3 an #4 were about 30 feet (1 section) longer than #1 and #2 and also slightly wider. I'm pretty sure they simply extended the plan by 1 section on the north end and kept the reactor in the same place relative to the south wall.

That would move the reactor 1/2 section to the south from the center of the building - directly under the round hole I point out int he picture above.

So where is the pressure dome? You are right that it wasn't obvious in the wreckage. I would place it's location in one of three places. Either 1; it went through the roof of the turbine building - remember the large hole in the roof.? 2; it landed out past the road, beyond the turbine building - there was a large yellowish item in the piles of wreckage toward the water which they covered with tarps and moved out fairly quickly. or 3; it fell into the hole on the north end of the #3 reactor building - the spot which now contains the "china syndrome pit" that emits smoke and steam on a regular basis.

But no, I cannot answer definitively where it went.

Regarding the explosion sequence - you could be right that it started as a hydrogen explosion, but I believe the main blast was a steam flash in the core. It may or may not have been accompanied by criticality.

If you look at the logs that have been published, they were fighting for their lives on unit three for 24 hours prior to the explosion. The core pressure got up to a recorded 1000 psi at one point, and they thought it was coming back down. Of course in the recently shown videos, Yoshida reports it accurately as a steam explosion.

And my point about the crane is this: They don't operate the reactor with the crane trolley above the core - It's normally moved over the dryer or "machinery" pool. The fact that it fell back down over the center of the building simply means the explosion came pretty hard from below.

Now let me put out one other scenario. I believe the #4 explosions came from the dryer (machinery pool) where the MOX fuel was stored and ready to be loaded into the core. It's possible they were storing MOX in the #3 dryer pool also and it exploded.

Which might explain the significant damage on the north end of the building - however, just as I said the explosion pattern could not have come from the SFP, it also could not have come from the dryer pool. You simply cannot get a vertical blast pattern from inside an open top box. Additionally, if the box remains intact, like the SFP did, you cannot get a blast pattern at all outside the walls of the box.


Anonymous said...

I see what you call a 'hole', and point out that some of the lower X-brace girders at the lower level of the roof matrix appear to still be in place - making an X across your so called 'hole'. X for wrong.
And even if those were not there, the 'hole' is still not big enough for the pressure dome to fit through.
Another thing you've forgotten is that above the pressure dome there's normally a removable thick concrete floor slab. Called the 'shield plugs'. See these:
Which is even larger diameter than the pressure dome. For the 'core to eject', that concrete plug would have to punch up through the roof too. It clearly didn't.
Funny that for someone claiming such detailed knowledge of the reactor buildings, you forgot about the shield plugs.

Here's another view, directly overhead:
Small, but you can see the lower X brace. Also note that the roof girders are rusting heavily in the zone closest to above the SFP, and nowhere else. Maybe it's just from a year of drifting steam - or maybe it's because they were steam and grit blasted as the SFP blew up.

Btw, I've looked at the holes in the turbine building roof, and they too are far too small to have been caused by the pressure dome. Also, the holes still have girders projecting. They were made by bits of falling concrete, that crumbled upon impact.

"a large yellowish item in the piles of wreckage toward the water which they covered with tarps" - you'll have to reference a photo, sorry.

In the TEPCO video a few weeks ago, where they lowered a camera over Unit 3, there was very clearly steam rising from directly below the crane trolley. This is because the water in the reactor well, above the pressure dome, is heated by whatever is going on inside the reactor vessel still. Presumably the steam is rising through gaps around the shield plug, which doesn't attempt to be any kind of gas seal.
And the crane trolley, is currently over the area of the well, no matter how many times you repeat that it's never left there during operation. And it wasn't 'blown up, and fell back down', as it appears to be still neatly lined up.

Mox fuel. You're the first person I've ever heard claim there was any MOX anywhere in Unit 4. All other reports say the only MOX at Fukushima was in the Unit 3 core (and none in the SFP). Give a reference. Otherwise I'm going to decide that you're just making stuff up to waste people's time.
As for storing fuel rods (new or used) in the machinery pool, in either building - bullshit. You think there's a fuel transfer chute between the machinery pool and the refueling pool?

About the SFP being a 'box', and therefore unable to create an upward jet. More bullshit. Take a look at the cutaway view again. Note the fuel rods are way down the bottom of the pool. The proposal is that the water had boiled or drained away sufficient to expose the tops of the rods, *then* after an H explosion there were a series of criticalities in among the rods. The steam explosion that resulted can't go anywhere but up. And it's also somewhat more directed due to being constrained by the vertical tubular structures of the rod racks themselves.


Anonymous said...

Terrahertz - not sure what your agenda is, but you are incorrect.

1. Yes the hole in the roof structure is there - exactly the size and location it would be if the core ejected. You can plainly see beams bent in an arc that were not bent in an arc prior to the explosion.

Those are very heavy steel beams - they don't just bend in a perfect circle on accident. That center beam is not even a beam - it's a heavy steel I-beam truss.

2. The lower X brace you talk about is there - as well as some other stray beams laying across where the hole fell back down - but they are not connected on both sides of the hole - I studied every single beam in every photo i could find a year ago. In fact, you can actually blow it up and see where the x braces are attached on one side, and ripped loose from the other. Maybe it was just the pressure cap and dome - maybe the whole RPV launched through there - but something strong enough to deform heavy steel beams into and arc launched through that hole

3. The explosion obliterated the concrete roof and walls. What makes you think the concrete cap would eject intact? It likely didn't.

4. The hole in the roof is "far too small" to have been caused by the pressure dome. Again do your homework. There was one very large hole, one medium sized hole and several small ones.

The larger hole, located directly to the east of the #3 reactor, closer to the ocean side of the turbine building, was almost precisely the same size as the hole in the roof structure.

As I said, I don't know where the cap went, but it certainly could have gone into any one of the places I describe. If you think it's still intact - show it to me. All I've seen is the top of the crane. - and they've been pretty shy to show anything else. Clearly they could remove that crane from the wreckage easily - they took the crane off of #4.

They know full-well what's not under that crane.

Anonymous said...

5. MOX - yes, I'm the first one to claim it was MOX that blew up reactor 4 building - and It's purely my speculation, so you won't find it anywhere else.

And no, there's no confirmation. But there's no other plausible explanation either. I came to this conclusion a few months ago.

They never said there was no MOX in #4. They said there was no MOX in the core - it was empty- or in the SFP. But something was in the dryer pool that exploded the entire building. Again, I have some training in blast analysis - the source of the blast in the #4 building was in that location.

Were they getting ready to load MOX into R4? I think they were.

6. SFP3 as the source pf the #3 explosion - no way possible - absolutely not. This is the biggest lie of Fukushima.

You and Arnie Gunderson and anybody else that claims it is 100% wrong.

Go back to Geometry. Draw a line from any point inside an open top box to every location possible from that point to outside the box. That's how shock waves propagate - in every direction from the center - until the shock wave is deflected.

With a 45 foot by 45 foot opening at the top - even a shock wave initiated from the very bottom of the pool will come out of the pool in an Inverted V shape with a rectangular imprint - with some blast coming out at a 15 or 20 degree angle.

Additionally, any slight deviation off dead center of the pool would cause an asymmetric blast pattern (canted in one direction or the other)

Think of a shotgun. If you have a long barrel, the steel shot comes out in a tight pattern. If you have a short barrel, the shot pattern is very wide.

That #3 explosion was "choked down" to be almost perfectly vertical. and it was a perfectly symmetric blast pattern.

No explosives expert in the entire world - unless they were paid to lie - would agree with you on that.

Furthermore - it's impossible for an explosion inside a box, to destroy items outside the box, below the level of the rim - unless the walls are destroyed. The entire #3 building was destroyed in the blast, with the exception of the #3 spent fuel pool. A second, totally independent reason that the blast did not come from the spent fuel pool.

The #3 blast either came out of the core, or the elevator shaft - take your pick - there's no other option. It did not originate in the fuel pool.


Atomfritz said...

This MOX discussion distracts from the fact that light water reactors also contain and breed plutonium.
Most of the MOX material is just LWR bred plutonium.

32 MOX assemblies out of 548 fuel assemblies total don't increase the total plutonium mass in the reactor.
So it's IMHO wrong to say "reactor 3 is dangerous because of a bit of MOX and the others aren't dangerous".

Atomfritz said...

of course, I meant that a few MOX assemblies don't increase the total plutonium mass significantly.

Anonymous said...

Atomfritz - you say a few MOX assemblies don't increase the total plutonium mass significantly.

This is true - but the danger does not lie in the amount - it lies in the form. The form of the mix between conventional and MOX is totally different, and that increases the risk to humans astronomically, for two reasons:

1. In order to get the more efficient "burn" they desire out of MOX (Mixed Oxide), what they do is mix a percentage of plutonium oxide with the Uranium. However unless it is mixed very carefully, the plutonium creates "hot spots" , and the overall efficiency of the fuel is poor.

In order to mix it well, they grind both the plutonium and the uranium into powder in the nanometer scale - that's millionths of a millimeter - then they carefully mix the two compounds and press the fuel into small pellets that are loaded into the zirconium tubes.

This is all similar to the production of conventional fuel with the exception of the fineness of the grind - conventional fuel is only ground to micro meter level (1000 times bigger than nanometer). So the plutonium that is produced inside a reactor with conventional fuel is captured in micrometer scale.

THE RISK OF MOX IS THIS NANOMETER PLUTONIUM OXIDE POWDER. Uranium and plutonium are very heavy metals. Heavier than gold or lead. They aren't likely to travel far from their source in an explosion - unless they are vaporized or they are they are in a form that can be carried by the wind. The difference between nanometer powder and micrometer powder in spreading it through the wind is tremendous.

Also remember plutonium is much more dangerous to humans if inhaled than if consumed in food and water. In fact the few studies on mammals that were conducted concluded it is 100% fatal in very small amounts if inhaled. It will cause multiple cancers within 18 to 60 months after inhalation.

The danger of the plutonium released from a conventional reactor explosion - like we saw at Fukushima - is astronomically higher with MOX than with conventional spent fuel with plutonium atoms, because nanometer particles of even very heavy metals can be carried by the wind for long distances.

2. The second reason MOX is dangerous is the production and transport of it. I personally would not work in a MOX factory. I would not live within 500 miles of one. With the new MOX plant at Savannah river, Charlotte and Atlanta and Orlando and Jacksonville are all off my list of places I will live. I'm on the Fringe of that 500 mile mark in the DC area.

THE STUFF IS THAT DANGEROUS! That dust is going to get out into the air - eventually. In any kind of accident, the Plutonium oxide powder will devastate the environment. Of course transporting the MOX is dangerous also - so if they are going to transport it near your home - wherever you live - you are in danger.


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