Thursday, April 4, 2013

Just in: #Fukushima I Nuke Plant Reactor 3 Spent Fuel Pool Cooling System Has Stopped (Now Resumed)

(UPDATE 4) Cooling of the Reactor 3 SFP resumed at 5:20PM (TEPCO's press conference).


(UPDATE 3) TEPCO says they were setting up a fence around the power board in question to prevent "small animals" from entering, and a ground fault may have occurred, triggering the alarm and stopping the Reactor 3 SFP cooling. So it was the fear of a mouse, not a mouse itself, that may have caused the stoppage.


(UPDATE 2) Alarm was sounded inside the Anti-seismic Building (headquarters at the plant), says Jiji, quoting Nuclear Regulatory Authority. That's rather odd.

(UPDATE) Jiji Tsushin reports TEPCO is expecting to resume cooling within today.


Again, it seems to be from an electrical problem. Details not yet known. (Another mouse, I wonder?)

TEPCO's email to the press (4/5/2013):


Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant Reactor 3 Spent Fuel Pool alternative cooling system stopped


At 2:27PM today, April 5, there was an alarm indicating failure of a power board, and we confirmed that the alternative cooling system for the Reactor 3 Spent Fuel Pool had stopped.


We are investigating the situation at the location right now.


The temperature of the Reactor 3 SFP as of 2PM today (April 5) is 15.1 degrees Celsius.


There is no change in radiation at monitoring posts.


As soon as we find out more, we will let you know.


Scott said...

More rodents of unusual size? But seriously, this isn't a laughing matter. Hopefully they solve the problem asap. I wonder how much actual time has actually elapsed since the power failure. If it's anything like last time it may have happened hours before the official announcement. Good old tax yen at work with perfect transparency and all from your honest, reformed, new Tepco. :(

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

Well it took less than one hour this time...

Scott said...

I guess that's an improvement. :)

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

TEPCO spokesman even bowed and apologized at the beginning of the press conference. LOL.

Anonymous said...

Here is what it looked like a huge red blob. They need to show what the 'ground fault' looked like..I think this screen capture by Nuckelchen is what happened. The colors of Fukushima..Radiation!

Anonymous said...

Yes, you can see radiation with a TV camera, and it's red!

Anonymous said...

Why is Tepco top management speaking to the parliament rather than to a prosecutor?

Anonymous said...

"TEPCO spokesman even bowed and apologized at the beginning of the press conference. LOL."

Meh. I'd be impressed but only if a TEPCO exc bowed and apologized then fell on a sharp sword.

Atomfritz said...


What about this newly discovered grossly leaking "underground" clay "tank" #2?

This "tank" is a clay pit almost completely filled with 13,000 cubic meters of radioactive stew!

Tepco estimated 120 cubic meters already leaked. [*]
Tepco first reported they measured an activity of 1E6 Bq/cm3 in the water they found leaked. [**]
But in an update, they reduced the Bq numbers by a factor of 1000, claiming "only" 20 curies of radioactivity leaked! [***]

Now they frantically attempt to pump the remaining radioactive brew from the broken clay pit into "clay tanks" #1 and #6 ...


arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

Thanks Atomfritz. I've been trying to gather information on that leak, and for some reason it has been very difficult to do. Not that there is little info but too many reports with only part of info in each of them. I'm trying to write a post for two days...

Atomfritz said...

OT 2:
Asahi Shimbun reports:

"About 13,000 tons of contaminated cooling water was put into the tank from Feb. 1 to March 2, filling it to capacity."

"The water had initially been used to cool melted nuclear fuel after the onset of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March 2011, and was subsequently put into the storage tank."

"TEPCO has been removing cesium from the water with filtration equipment. However, water that goes through the filtration process and is stored in the underground storage tank is still highly contaminated because it contains other radioactive materials, such as strontium. The radioactivity level of the water is about 290,000 becquerels per cubic centimeter."

"TEPCO became aware of the leak after measuring the height of the water in the tank on April 4 and 5."

"The underground storage tank is 60 meters long, 53 meters wide and 6 meters deep. It is lined with three layers of protective sheets--two made of polyethylene and the outermost layer of clay--to prevent leakage."

"TEPCO suspects that joints in the sheets of the polyethylene layer had ruptured and the water then managed to leak through the 6.4-millimeter-thick clay layer."

Wow. Gee.
Two PE foils and a 1/4th inch clay layer to secure 14,000 cubic meters of highly radioactive soup.

Did Tepco already tell us that a large part of the "tank" capacity is just trenches, each larger than 10000 square feet and 20 feet deep?!?


Atomfritz said...

@ LaPrimavera

Releasing many reports, each containing only a little bit of info. This is a strategy to keep the confusion up, nobody seeing the whole picture.
It's this thing I was immediately thinking of when seeing that Tepco spammed 9 (!) updates on the leak in the course of a few hours, each containing small details, that are even somewhat conflicting and/or incoherent, making difficult to complete the puzzle.

Thank you again for your efforts to help make people know and understand what is happening in Japan!

BTW I had to laugh when I read update 3 about the the Tepco workers who installed the mouse fence.
The workers apparently shorted something and the ground fault protection shut electricity off, saving the workers from getting roasted. Let's hope no worker has been injured seriously.

Anonymous said...

Hodo Station reported that the leaks might have been caused by the the ground yielding under the weight of the water and allowing the PE sheets to tear.
The land survey prior to the digging of the tanks might have been somehow inaccurate as well.

Unknown said...

It got resumed in very less time.. thanks for the information !

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