Fukushima Reactor “In Meltdown”

fukushima-i-nuclear-power-plant-1.jpg

fukushima-i-nuclear-power-plant-2.jpg

A nuclear reactor in tsunami crippled Fukushima prefecture is suspected of having entered meltdown, and radioactive material has been released into the atmosphere during the incident.

After the quake caused the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant’s Reactor #1 to automatically shut down as it was designed to, the emergency core cooling system apparently failed to engage as it not only lost main power, but also lost its backup diesel generator power due to the tsunami’s effects.

With no cooling possible and reactor temperature and pressure rising, Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency announced they suspected a reactor meltdown was in progress, and confirmed that radioactive material had already been released into the atmosphere during the incident.

They have reportedly since managed to begin lowering reactor pressure and bring the situation under control, though at the expense of further leakage of radioactive material.

People living within a 10km radius of the plant, some 50,000 in all, have been evacuated or put on evacuation standby, whilst army units have arrived at the plant to assist in controlling the reactor.

Japan’s nuclear plants provide a third of the nation’s electricity and are designed to be earthquake proof; their safety record has generally been good (although several scandals relating to fraudulent or lax inspection have helped call this into question), but after this incident it is likely operators will be facing some difficult questions.

Not least of which is the wisdom of operating a nuclear reactor on the literal edge of sea in an earthquake hotspot, and with a backup power supply which is evidently none too waterproof:

fukushima-i-nuclear-power-plant-3.jpg

The event has already been likened to America’s 1979 Three Mile Island accident, in which a meltdown caused by poor design and a series of unlikely failures in combination gave rise to a small amount of radioactive leakage and a great deal of media panic.

Meanwhile, eastern Japan’s power grid is at breaking point – severely hit areas remain without power, but due to the disruption to power generation a major shortfall is anticipated, and the power company responsible is considering instituting a program of rolling 3 hour blackouts to compensate, Japan’s first.


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    194 Comments
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    Comment by Anonymous
    19:30 12/03/2011 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    better 3 mile Island than Chernobyl

    Comment by Dark Mage
    03:57 13/03/2011 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    3 mile island did not result in harm to even a single person.
    While Chernobyl resulted in 3000 to 4000 casualties including long term effects.

    Here a water cooled type did fail completely but little permanent environmental damage was done.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SL-1
    This is the worst case failure mode for a BWR.

    My big worry is groups like green peace will use this to attack the nuclear power industry and prevent the construction of much safer reactors such as the molten salt reactor which can't even fail like 3 mile island.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molten_salt_reactor

    The irony is Green peace likely has done more environmental damage then Chernobyl by causing more dirty coal fired power plants to be built in their place.
    BTW coal fired power plants globally con be attributed to around 20,000 annual deaths a year due to pollution or mining accidents.
    9-11 and the Iraq war are examples of the risks associated with oil.
    Nothing is without some level of risk.

    Avatar of rei_yuriko
    Comment by rei_yuriko

    Maybe we should switch to Mahou Shoujo energy.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:59 12/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.7)

    All of you who kept saying 2 nukes weren't enough. Now what huh? This is terrible.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:18 12/03/2011 # ! Drivel (-1.0)

    yeah the earthquake and tsunami give it the best for 3rd nuke

    Avatar of Yourtime
    Comment by Yourtime
    18:28 12/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.7)

    well you can say what you want, but know ishihara has now something more important than the manga ban or other bans.

    hope it didn't die more people or get effected of it.
    yesterday was it already 1k.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:36 12/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.7)

    and i bet ishihara will say "this happened because of anime/manga" and will want to ban them more >.<

    Avatar of Megidola
    Comment by Megidola
    01:30 13/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Ishihara's brain went into meltdown long ago.

    Avatar of PewPewPew!
    Comment by PewPewPew!
    00:04 13/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.4)

    He'd be labeled a retard if he does... Blaming something that has only to do with humans upon nature is outright silly...

    Anyway, hope they can get through it with anything major happening....

    01:30 13/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.6)

    @GraceUnderFire I thought he was already a retard.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:20 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    You're talking about the Virgina Tech shootings. Jack Thompson decided it was the fault of videogames before anything at all was known about the shooter. Turned out that the shooter not only didn't have an game consoles, he never played games at all. All he did was write, poorly, but just write. I think that was shortly before Jack Thompson sent gay porn to the judge that would eventually ban him from practicing law.

    Avatar of No Longer an Active Account
    02:22 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Even if he did, he'd probably be shunned by the media. There would be no proof that somehow this happened. He can indeed blame nature for it, but he can't say that it could've been prevented either.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:07 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Jack Thompson did something sort of similar once. I forget exactly what happened (some crime) but he insisted that video games were the cause. Knowing what happened to him I'd love to see Ishihara and everyone blame this on anime, manga and games.

    Comment by Anonymous

    I FORGET WHAT SOME GUY DID SOMETIME AND ITS SOMEHOW RELATED TO THIS BUT I JUST WANTED TO REMIND MYSELF THAT MY OPINION MATTERS.

    Just STFU and walk away. Now.

    Avatar of konakona
    Comment by konakona
    23:10 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    If it does blow up, I hope a piece of metal shard flies his way.

    Avatar of Odysseus
    Comment by Odysseus
    00:07 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    1) It won't blow up, at worst it'll melt down
    2) Tokyo isn't in Fukushima, Ishihara has nothing to do with the plant

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:52 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    We can dream, can't we?

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:30 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    This is all part of Ishiharas plan. He wants to exterminate the youth to prevent it from being corrupted by manga.

    Avatar of jr2nd
    Comment by jr2nd
    12:39 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    "and i bet ishihara will say "this happened because of anime/manga" and will want to ban them more >.<"

    i said this in the other post about the reactor, similar mind thinking? lol

    Avatar of Marine-RX179
    Comment by Marine-RX179
    03:45 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    Na, he's gonna blame Vocaloid fans/otaku cursed Japan by composing Kagamine Rin's song "Meltdown"...

    Avatar of Lily White
    Comment by Lily White
    03:37 14/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    What about Solar Sect of Mystic Wisdom ~ Nuclear Fusion?

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:23 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Why do I think of rin kagamine all of a sudden. *cough*

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:28 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Went to over 1800.

    Avatar of Sylar
    Comment by Sylar
    20:34 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Ishihara is a Tokyo governor, Tokyo is generally in good shape so all this problems ain't his.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:02 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Except..
    Tokyo really isn't in that good a shape

    Avatar of Odysseus
    Comment by Odysseus
    00:08 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    From what at least one member living in Tokyo has said, Tokyo isn't in nearly as bad a position as it could've been in.

    Avatar of Marine-RX179
    Comment by Marine-RX179
    04:35 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    Em...today I spoke with a Japanese friend who live in Tokyo on MSN, and he says it's not too bad in Tokyo comparing other places...

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:48 13/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.6)

    I live within sight of Three-Mile-Island in Harrisburg, Pa. The amount of radioactive gas leaked was less that the output of a microwave oven. Don't believe ANYTHING you hear until the news stops trying to get ratings (I assume they even do THAT in Japan too?) and the government stops looking for scapegoats. (They do that EVERYWHERE)

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:33 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Just to update: No, there is no meltdown. The release of irradiated material was due to pressure-relief efforts (releasing some of the steam from the pressure vessel), and it was this released steam that caused the subsequent explosion above the rector. Water cracked into hydrogen and oxygen by the heat, which was mixed with water vapour and a tiny quantity of radioisotopes in the steam, recombined explosively.

    The worry here isn't "OH NOES, MELTDOWN = DOOM", it's, "How did TEPCO fuck up so badly that not only did the diesel generators for the HPCI fail after an hour, but to have insufficient backup batter power to run the LPCI, and still not fire ADS. And worse, they probably waited to switch to SLCS (which would require a rector overhaul after use) in the hope of saving money. Unlike Three Mile Island, this is a case of a less serious failure causing more serious effects due to further asshattery on behalf of TEPCO. In a time where nuclear power is needed more than ever, a slap on the wrist is nowhere near harsh enough: TEPCO need to have ownership of their remaining rectors transferred to someone else.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:09 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    A melt-down has many stages. It could have already begun but the protective coating around the rods is still intact. That's why they are flooding the core chamber. To cool down the coating.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:06 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    It's Japan, they have so little to report that even 18yos downloading manga becomes headline news. So yeah, they're bound to milk it for everything they can.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:10 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Way to go, guy. Go milk your ego or something.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:57 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    It shouldn't be that disastrous even if there is a meltdown, but the reactor itself is going to be out of order for sure.

    Avatar of robobob
    Comment by robobob
    01:09 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    A pretty ironic thing is, that they were already planning to shut down the reactor this month.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:56 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    Some Americans here are trying to be very asshatic trolls.

    Why don't you see this projected fallout map
    http://s1.directupload.net/images/110312/42d4dk27.jpg
    (1000 rad is pretty much guaranteed death)

    Still feeling funny? Or too busy looking for iodine?

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:48 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    That map is a fake. But it´s funny how people get excited about it. Seriously, you shouldn´t believe everything you are told, especially on the internet.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:09 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Shush, and let those fucktards fear for a bit.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:45 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    especially those brainwashed by Greenpeace...
    (they sell fear for donations to have money to create more fear...)

    the the inevitable death toll of Chernobyl was below 10. (working inside the reactor.)
    The rest was due to bad crisis management.
    and we all know what the Japanese excel at...
    (not to mention that a relatively common basement radon level has a higher equivalent dose that what you get in the exclusion zone these days)

    And it's a reactor WITH dry well. All Chernobyl had was a "standard" building like the one that already blew up in Fukushima... also due to a hydrogen explosion.

    Avatar of HouseLife
    Comment by HouseLife
    20:30 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Vitamin C and Robatussin should take care of everything.

    Avatar of Riiku
    Comment by Riiku
    20:20 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Holy fuck. Seriously man. HOLY FUCK

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    21:25 12/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Let you all pray the radioactive cloud hits Russia instead. That'd be lucky, wouldn't it?

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:10 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    The jetstreams tend to push airborne things towards the east.

    Avatar of konakona
    Comment by konakona

    "Human population is 6,900,000,000 and it's still growing by 10 every 4 seconds. So why do you make a big fuss over the loss of a few?"

    Cookie for the quote finder :D.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:16 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    QB you da man

    Avatar of ntbxp
    Comment by ntbxp
    01:22 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    MOTHER FUCKING KYUUBEE...

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:51 12/03/2011 # ! Drivel (-0.8)

    Probably because not some shitheads from America died or generic black/chinese/indian, but japanese ~ people far superior then them.

    It's the quality of a society and not the mass of people.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:43 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Have you no shame you prick? You think now is the time for talking like that? You think viewing the world and those in it as less than you?
    Well if you are so high and mighty GET OFF YOUR COMPUTER AND JOIN THE AID OF THOSE WHO NEED IT!!!!!!!!
    How dare you spend your INSIGNIFICANT lie of a life making light of those who inhabit this planet!
    NO ONE IS TRULY SAFE FROM HARM!!!!!!
    NO RACE IS SAFE FROM HARM!!!!

    Avatar of Legion
    Comment by Legion
    20:39 12/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.4)

    The Legion would like to express our greatest horror towards this incident.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:59 13/03/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Legion has reached consensus? So fast? Wow.

    Avatar of kyuusei
    Comment by kyuusei
    18:10 12/03/2011 # ! Good (+0.4)

    I am by no means an expert but I'm pretty sure it's coastal location is for easy access to water.

    Nuclear power plants use nuclear fission to generate energy which is used to turn water into steam. That steam is driven into turbines that spin and power generators which give you electricity.

    Actually the entire process that comes after nuclear fission is usually what happens in all modern power plants, coal fired or gas fired. They just use a different heat source.

    Comment by Anonymous

    This note the lack of cooling towers?
    they use the sea as HUGE heat sink for the "cold" side of the cooling loop







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