Sunday, August 28, 2011

(UPDATED) NISA Mentions "Neptunium-239" in August 29 Press Conference

(UPDATE on 8/30/2011: NISA still hasn't said a word about conversion, but someone in Japan did the calculation based on the NISA's numbers released on June 6. You can view it at this link or in the image below. In plain language, neptunium-239 will decay into plutonium-239, adding 2×10^7 becquerels (20,000,000 becquerels) to the existing plutonium-239. The calculation was done by Tomohiro Endo, a researcher (nuclear physics) at Nagoya University.)

(UPDATE on 8/29/2011: NISA backtracked in the joint conference (TEPCO/government) in the afternoon, and now says it's not sure about the conversion rate of neptunium-239 into plutonium-239.)

Now this is very curious.

The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA)'s daily press conference is ongoing (August 29). The NISA spokesman Moriyama mentions neptunium-239's conversion ratio to plutonium-239 as 1 to 1.

According to the June 6 estimate by the NISA:

Plutonium-239: 3.2×10^9

Neptunium-239: 7.6×10^13

So, now it is:

Plutonium-239: 7.6 x 10^13, or 76,000,000,000,000 or 76 terabecquerels

The amount of plutonium-239 has increased 23,000-fold, according to NISA.

On August 15 I wrote about neptunium-239, half life of about 2 days, having been detected in large quantity in Iitate-mura, 35 kilometers from Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant. I had to take down the second post on the subject, but the information was correct.

Now, NISA is suddenly mentioning neptunium-239. Admission of wide dispersion of this nuclide and resultant plutonium-239 may be finally forthcoming, after more than 5 months.


flo said...

What do you mean by: "I needed to take down that second posting?"

Was there something wrong?

netudiant said...

Is it not that the neptunium, because of its much shorter half life, emits about 4 million times more intensely than the plutonium it decays into? So the extra neptunium will on 1 for 1 conversion to plutonium be about 10**6 less active, which will not change the plutonium burden by more than a percent.
The real issue is where did the plutonium come from? It is not a volatile material as is cesium or iodine, so if the disaster released plutonium, it suggests molten fuel at fuel boiling temperature directly exposed to the air.

Anonymous said...

this ols news, move along. bunch of numbers and a bunch of mumbo jumbo. Your prose is very lawyer like. The big number is 0, 0 deaths from Fukushima Radiation. The people have absorbed and still survived just fine: iodine, cesium, strontium, silver, plutonium, kryptonium, uranium, neptouium, gamma rays and many more

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

@netudiant, 4 million times? Oh no. I think the researcher took the soil and plant samples in either late March or early April in Iitate-mura, and most villagers were there in the village. Some even came back from evacuation after being assured by the government-sent experts that it was totally safe.

Anonymous said...

I calculated the whole thing

YOUR NUMBER IS WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

7,6 X 10^13 means about 0,009kg = 9g Np239

After 20 days there are 20,765,677 Bq Pu239. That means about another 20 MegaBq!

Here is the formular:

Bq = m/ma * Na/t(1/2) * ln(2)

m = weight of the released stuff
ma = weight of the atom (Np239, Pu239, etc.)
Na = Avogadro
t(1/2) = half life of the element

You can calculate it yourselfe. You will see, I am right!

Anonymous said...

Consentrate less on the numbers and focus on the real deal, the simple fact that its not yett stopped.
The numbers are relevenat for the people involved, but the future is highly uncertain.
We have since March seen the numbers rise, the scope widens, the fallout expanding and steadily increased. And the "core" left the building.
Its not even posible to be any wurse than what it already is.
And now we have entered onknown territory.

And still the mainland Japan is not suficiently maped and that work sould be speeded up and posted everywhere.

My consenrns is and has been the longterm implications. The melted core, why no Infra or heat signature pictures, we are still cept in the dark. I know that the situation is in essens, out of control. And dont forgett, we are also victims of the fallout.
We have a right to know.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Just 9g Np released by the reactor???
First, to me it sounds just like Tepco didn´t give the true number!It must be more than 9g!
Secondly, if just 9g are so very highly radioactive, we´re in big problems!
Does anyone know, how much Np or Pu are in the reactors??
If 9g Np causing many headlines and giving so many problems regarding people´s health and causing so many problems to enviroment, what else to say? I am speachless! Wow!
There are tons of nuc waste and cores in there!!!!!!

the voice in your head said...


Aerosolization due to a kaboom. Pressure cooking of fuel...

Greyhawk said...

TO 0 DEATHS- There may not have been any deaths attributed to radiation poisoning yet but it takes time for cancer to develop once radioactive particles have been absorbed into the body. There are still long term radioactive particles being released into the atmosphere that will be toxic long enough to be distributed all over the planet. This is a global disaster.

Anonymous said...

Chernobyl is credited with a million deaths and this thing is much worse. They have had groups of suicide squads running in and out of these things since the beginning. Japan is notoriously close mouthed. They have probably hidden them away. Radiation levels are over the limit all over the Northern hemisphere. Scientists don't know what to do and containment attempts have been a joke. We're doomed.

Brian said...

May not be any deaths, but here in Ontario Canada our fruit trees in the back are covered with really horrible looking apples, pears etc. I would say its a total loss. At least here anyway.

jmdesp said...

Yes, the June 6 estimate by the NISA is in Becquerel, that written on top, it's not the number of nuclides.

So as Np-239 is 1 million times more active than Pu-239, the 7.6×10^13 Becquerel activity of Np-239 decays into a 7.6×10^7 Becquerel activity of the resulting Pu-239 with a 1-1 ratio. This means we go from 3.2x10^9 of Pu-239 initially to 3.276x10^9. It falls within the rounding error.

But Neptunium is even more dense than Uranium, and it's not soluble. Even with the extremely powerful explosion at Chernobyl, an explosion of the fuel itself, and not of surrounding hydrogen like in Fukushima, no such dense material was found at a distance from the reactor.

It's very hard to find a scenario explaining such a finding. I'm waiting for the paper.

Anonymous said...

I’m afraid your math is wrong.

When a given quantity of an isotope decays into another, the activity does not remain the same. The number of moles remains the same. Using this principle, the Np-239 release given below would correspond to less than 10 mg. 10 mg of Pu-239 is 6.2x10-4 Ci, or 2.3x108 Bq. So it would be an order of magnitude less than the Pu-239 that was directly released.

Anonymous said...

Watch Arnie Gunderson. He'll tell you he thinks the actual fuel in the reactor core(s) exploded, and dispersed pieces as large as a centimeter. That would explain a lot.

Anonymous said...

I've heard rumors that Aliens leaving this planet. Does anyone know the real cause?

Anonymous said...

Fuel fragments have been found 2 km away. Nuclear explosions for sure.

chihointokyo said...

Arnie Gunderson rather still thinks the explosion was of the fuel pool, but said if NRC's assertion (the core containment explosion) was right, the situation would be much worse. (Aug-21 Video

Hamro nepal said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

"here in Ontario Canada our fruit trees in the back are covered with really horrible looking apples, pears etc"

Same here in Northern Ohio, USA.

Anonymous said...

same in Montreal. pears, plums rotting on trees and funny looking.

Anonymous said...

Fruit tree problems , in Japan the trees are just fine. Fruit growers know the comical name of the current pest , it looks like a foil wrapped bug...yep that's his name.

Anonymous said...

Hint it's called the Japanese beetle of all things and has been here in the States and Canada for nearly a century.

Anonymous said...

anon said 0 deaths so far,the Liquidators dont count? their people too and very brave!

Anonymous said...

The article goes around the world even though THE MATH IS WRONG!!!!!

In a comment above I proofed with a formular that THE RELEASE WAS

9g Np.

That means

about 20 MBq!!!!

Please stop taking the number given in the article serious!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ariane said...

So now someone did the calculation I did!!!!!
I am from Germany! It was myy comment! I id it the first time´, just for the book

Ariane said...

Now I have to say, I feel really good!
A researcher got about the same amount as I calculated. And the figures (half live, etc.) I used were not precisously but I didn´t have better once.
I feel very good. From now on I am going to subcribe with name and not anonymous anymore!

TribuMinyU Hoo said...

..................NICE.. ^_^v.................

ハローワールド said...


arevamirpal::laprimavera said...


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