Steel yourselves Real America, and tell your liberal sister-in-law to get the tin foil hats off the kids… the propaganda onslaught to destroy the nuclear power industry is now in it’s first phase as Japan moves to stabilize six reactors after last week’s earthquake and tsunami.
To his credit Limbaugh is hitting this hard today… fighting back against the left’s continuing onslaught to stop this nation dead in its tracks.
Japan’s proclivity for seismic disorders and tsunamis is exactly why they are probably the safest on the planet as far as acts of God are concerned; the fact they they haven’t gone mushroom proves the technology is doing exactly what it was designed to do in case of this exact scenario. The built-in safeguards worked to perfection… and the rest is a simple cost:benefit trade-off for Western civilization.
Not operating nuke plants in Japan is akin to not building a house/town because of the possibility of a 500-year flood. Nawl’ins? Amsterdam?
Hundreds of test pilots with the right stuff died perfecting the jet aircraft simply so that you can sit next to a 400-pounder in coach and arrive in LAX in two hours for $350.
Ted Kennedy’s car killed more people than Three Mile Island
The analogies and object lessons are legion… fortune favors the bold.
The concept is not a lot different from the Gulf Oil “Disaster” which was going to kill all life on the planet in a week, according to Obama who intentionally did nothing for as long as possible in order to help that happen. And the result…. we’re still not back to drilling in the Gulf and it cost me $75 to fill up yesterday.
The secondary gain here is that 24-7 news of The Japan Syndrome will kill all coverage of the union thug melt-down and the continuing epic failure of the Do-Nothing-in-Chief.
I didn’t get a lot of nuclear physics, or any physics, come to think of it, in my meager schooling but I pride myself on my reasoning and my complete distrust of Western media (which brought you Global Warming and the horror of the Alar Apple Tragedy) reporting on any kind of science, from birth control pills to asthma and Alar. Add to that sound reasoning that virtually all the dinosaur news media is a wholly owned subsidiary of the democrat party.
So I’m passing along the following via The Ninja from Brave New Planet’s article, Fukushima Nuclear Accident – a simple and accurate explanation « BraveNewClimate which strikes me as a very sound observation of the situation in Japan.
I am writing this… to give you some peace of mind regarding the safety of Japan’s nuclear reactor. Up front, the situation is serious, but under control. And this text is long! But you will know more about nuclear power plants after reading it than all journalists on this planet put together.
There was and will not be any significant release of radioactivity.
By “significant” I mean a level of radiation of more than what you would receive on – say – a long distance flight.
When the earthquake hit with 8.9, the nuclear reactors all went into automatic shutdown. Within seconds after the earthquake started, the control rods had been inserted into the core and nuclear chain reaction of the uranium stopped.
The earthquake destroyed the external power supply of the nuclear reactor.
The reactor operators switched to emergency battery power. The batteries were designed as one of the backups to the backups, to provide power for cooling the core for 8 hours. And they did.
It was at this stage that people started to talk about core meltdown. Because at the end of the day, if cooling cannot be restored, the core will eventually melt (after hours or days), and the last line of defense, the core catcher and third containment, would come into play.
Because cooling the core is such a big deal, the reactor has a number of cooling systems, each in multiple versions (the reactor water cleanup system, the decay heat removal, the reactor core isolating cooling, the standby liquid cooling system, and the emergency core cooling system). Which one failed when or did not fail is not clear at this point in time.
So imagine our pressure cooker on the stove, heat on low, but on. The operators use whatever cooling system capacity they have to get rid of as much heat as possible, but the pressure starts building up. The priority now is to maintain integrity of the first containment (keep temperature of the fuel rods below 2200°C), as well as the second containment, the pressure cooker. In order to maintain integrity of the pressure cooker (the second containment), the pressure has to be released from time to time. Because the ability to do that in an emergency is so important, the reactor has 11 pressure release valves. The operators now started venting steam from time to time to control the pressure. The temperature at this stage was about 550°C.
This is when the reports about “radiation leakage” starting coming in. I believe I explained above why venting the steam is theoretically the same as releasing radiation into the environment, but why it was and is not dangerous. The radioactive nitrogen as well as the noble gases do not pose a threat to human health.
At some stage during this venting, the explosion occurred. The explosion took place outside of the third containment and the reactor building. Remember that the reactor building has no function in keeping the radioactivity contained.
The nuclear material itself was still intact, but the surrounding Zircaloy shell had started melting. What happened now is that some of the byproducts of the uranium decay – radioactive Cesium and Iodine – started to mix with the steam. The big problem, uranium, was still under control, because the uranium oxide rods were good until 3000 °C. It is confirmed that a very small amount of Cesium and Iodine was measured in the steam that was released into the atmosphere.
The water used in the cooling system is very clean, demineralized (like distilled) water. This has no effect whatsoever on the core – it does not care what it is cooled by.
In order to prevent a core meltdown, the operators started to use sea water to cool the core.
The point is that the nuclear fuel has now been cooled down. Because the chain reaction has been stopped a long time ago, there is only very little residual heat being produced now. The large amount of cooling water that has been used is sufficient to take up that heat. Because it is a lot of water, the core does not produce sufficient heat any more to produce any significant pressure. Also, boric acid has been added to the seawater. Boric acid is “liquid control rod”. Whatever decay is still going on, the Boron will capture the neutrons and further speed up the cooling down of the core.
Now, where does that leave us?
- The plant is safe now and will stay safe.
- Japan is looking at an INES Level 4 Accident: Nuclear accident with local consequences. That is bad for the company that owns the plant, but not for anyone else.
- Some radiation was released when the pressure vessel was vented. All radioactive isotopes from the activated steam have gone (decayed). A very small amount of Cesium was released, as well as Iodine. If you were sitting on top of the plants’ chimney when they were venting, you should probably give up smoking.
- The reactor core will then be dismantled and transported to a processing facility, just like during a regular fuel change.
If idiot hippies hadn’t let their ignorance ruin the development of nuclear power, we wouldn’t be depending on 40 year old plants. The amount of cancer causing sludge and smog dumped out of one coal plant a week is 100 times more deadly then this. Shitty newscasters try to sensationalize with terms like “MELTDOWN” without understanding them, don’t be fooled by networks trying to get ratings or web hits.