Power Restored at Fukushima-Daiichi

Power has been restored to all six reactors at Fukushima-Daiichi. Now reactor coolant can be refilled and circulated and spent fuel pools can be refilled. Improvement in reducing radiation levels should be rapid now.



6 Replies to "Power Restored at Fukushima-Daiichi"

  • Rod Clemetson
    March 21, 2011 (10:35 pm)

    ==> Provided the control panels, motors and pumps are still in good shape. Let's hope Murphy has been chained to a lamp post in Nagasaki.

  • Phred
    March 22, 2011 (9:45 am)

    So much for the doomsday prophets saying it would be many times worse than Chernobyl.

    Am I correct in that while reactors 1-4 are damaged beyond repair the two newer reactors are relatively unharmed?

  • Kirk Sorensen
    March 22, 2011 (9:57 am)

    Yeah, it looks like reactors 1-4 are not ever going to run again. There may be a chance to restart reactors 5 and 6 however, since they were shut down and defueled and their spent fuel pools got a little hotter but never out of hand.

  • alex555
    March 22, 2011 (2:41 pm)

    "So much for the doomsday prophets saying it would be many times worse than Chernobyl."

    You can bet they won't show the good news on TV, or says: "it's not design or preparation that prevented the problem, thats just luck …"

    I mean, people want to see problems in nuclear, they will always be able to see conspiracies or anything.

  • Dr. Tom
    March 24, 2011 (1:23 pm)

    On March 19 when the graphite control rods began to burn, all satellite pictures of F-D-I became classified and no more have been released.

    The status at this moment is as follows: Reactors 1,2, and 3 are in partial meltdown and the control rods in reactor 3 are probably on fire. At least one of the main containments is breached.

    Partial power has been restored to all of the reactors but the only things in operation are some of the lights in 2 and 3. No one is trying to get any of the original cooling equipment back on line. The explosions wrecked that. What they are trying to do is keep the cores from a criticality excursion. They can keep trying to do that until one of the cores reaches the water table.

    Some of the spent fuel rods were stored in pools near the tops of the reactors and came crashing down on the machinery external to the main containments during the hydrogen explosions. It is somewhat unlikely that they did no damage. The ones that didn't fall are sitting in cracked pools overheating – there is not enough fresh water in the area anymore to cool the reactors, even if the pumps worked – and pumping seawater merely deposits salts as it evaporates or flashes into steam. That is not a viable long-term solution either.

    I (personally) assess the incident as a level 7. At this point what is happening is just the opposite of what happened at Chernobyl – when THAT reactor exploded, it stopped the reaction. At F-D-I the reaction is still in progress and the situation seems to be deteriorating.

  • Matt J.
    April 21, 2011 (5:23 pm)

    Both the original article and all the comments on it are now pretty out of date. Restoring power did NOT restore the ability to use the built in cooling systems, which should have not been a surprise: they took too much damage to be operable now.

    The meltdown continues, but at a slow rate, since they are doing what they can to cool it. The radioactive releasess continue, but at a much reduced rate. Nobody knows exactly what rate, since Japan is no longer allowing publication of any but TEPCO and METI's official figures, which are know to be unreliable.

    But Japan upstaged a lot of the news with their own decision to rate this a Level 7, even though even the critical French had only been willing to call it Level 6 before. The argument that the amount of release in the early days justified Level 7 is not convincing. They have not output as much as Mayak did, and that was a Level 6.

    I would certainly like to believe that LFTR is a safer technology, that would have done better than this even in such a major earthquake and tsunami. But it will be quite an uphill battle to persuade the skeptical governments and insurers of this now.

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