Fukushima The Truth Behind the Chain of Meltdowns – YouTube is a NHK Japanese TV report that discusses the now-unfolding scandal of why several of the reactors blew up. That is, the SRV, safety release valves, which remove gases accumulating like in a pressure cooker and thus, lets more water into the chamber to cool the rods, were inoperative after the tsunami and the only way to open these valves was to find 12 volt batteries. Which Tepco refused to give.
Reactor #2 released the most toxins in the meltdown horror show. 39 minutes into the show, reactor #3 meltdown. 32 hours before it had its hydrogen gas explosion, a day and a half after the tsunami. They were running out of batteries that ran pumps and opened and closed valves.
The nuclear power workers called Tepco headquarters and they sent 2 volt batteries to Fukushima with the help of a Japan Defense Force helicopter. But these were the wrong batteries! They needed 12 volt batteries. 10 were needed for each SR valve that released buildup of vapors which prevent water from entering the containment unit.
Why didn’t the Fukushima get these batteries? The interview of the Tepco executive who screened the requests that day was, he was TOO BUSY to prioritize! So he IGNORED the urgent demand for batteries to turn the valves.
Tepco had the batteries. But these were kept 50 miles away, 1,000 batteries.
The storage site had no delivery trucks. The brave workers stuck in this hellish disaster area connected their car batteries to the valves and it was too late by this time and the reactor blew up. The scandal of the batteries is making news in Japan because it turns out the calls to headquarters for urgent batteries be brought to Fukushima were bogged down with paperwork demands by the headquarters staff.
That is, they argued with the nuclear workers stuck in Fukushima and didn’t want to release the batteries and even asked the staff at the nuclear power plant to go to a store and buy some. The end of this scandal has yet to run its course and probably will end with someone killing himself.
ALL nuclear power explosions have human incompetence as a key element. Humans are not trustworthy guardians of these dangerous nuclear dragons. Any disruption or natural event can cause a chain reaction that never really ends. As we see in the Chernobyl crypt which still seethes with radioactive madness. The same is true of Fukushima: it is not finished, it continues to evolve and destroy.
More proof that the contamination is continuing and spreading like a cancer in our once-health oceans: Fish Off Fukushima, Japan, Show Elevated Levels of Cesium – NYTimes.com
But about 40 percent of fish caught off Fukushima and tested by the government still have too much cesium to be safe to eat under regulatory limits set by the Japanese government last year, said the article’s author, Ken O. Buesseler, a leading marine chemistry expert at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, who analyzed test results from the 12 months following the March 2011 disaster….“The fact that many fish are just as contaminated today with cesium 134 and cesium 137 as they were more than one year ago implies that cesium is still being released into the food chain,” Mr. Buesseler wrote. This kind of cesium has a half-life of 30 years, meaning that it falls off by half in radioactive intensity every 30 years. Given that, he said, “sediments would remain contaminated for decades to come.”
Water pours into Fukushima to keep the reactors and the spent fuel pools from erupting in massive explosions which can still occur. But this water has to be removed and also, due to earthquake cracks, is probably a ‘China Syndrome’ event where the radioactive materials enter the water table and spreads underground.
And it is increasingly obvious that the people at the very top of Japan’s ‘democracy’ are insane: Edano, Minister of Economy, “Nuclear Spent fuel should be stocked in Tokyo and other big city areas” | Fukushima Diary. This is the ‘spread it everywhere’ ethos whereby no one can escape the radioactive materials so they all become used to it and thus, it is successfully integrated into the entire ecosystem and all people.
This alarming idea should motivate the Japanese people to find new leaders but the new guys on the horizon are insane imperialists like the former mayor of Osaka who provoked the battle over the islands with China. Ishihara just announced he is starting a new right wing fascist party for this purpose. Both mainstream parties take turns betraying the voters so they might, in disgust, go for the new guy even if he is pushing them all into WWIII which would eliminate Japan as a habitable landmass.
More Fukushima scandals by government officials: False hope: radiation monitoring in the Fukushima area | Greenpeace International
Earlier this month The Association for Citizens and Scientists Concerned About Internal Radiation Exposures raised concerns that the Japanese government was manipulating radiation readings with these official monitoring stations.
Between October 16 and 19, Greenpeace checked 40 monitoring posts throughout Fukushima city. For 75% of them, the radiation readings close to the posts were lower than readings for their immediate surroundings. Contamination levels within 25 metres of the posts were up to six times higher than at the posts themselves.
The authorities claim they do not intend these monitoring posts to be misleading, stating that they publish information about which areas around the posts have been decontaminated. However, for the people living in the areas and anyone passing by, they certainly give the impression that contamination levels are lower than what they may be just a few metres from the posts.
Of course, the officials know this is done to give false assurance to people desperate enough or simply naive to continue living in this nuclear hell. By publishing the truth which is seen by few people, they cover their asses. But they know that this is deceptive practice by the government and simply don’t care.
As for Fukushima in general, it has nearly vanished from the mainstream news which is intent on talking about fetuses and rapists who impose these fetuses on innocent women. Ugh. The abortion of part of the planet due to genetic destruction? Not so interesting. And the rape of nearly every female creature in a 500 mile radius? Fukushima should be a hot issue since we have identical plants sitting on earthquake-prone areas just waiting to replicate that disaster.
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24 responses to “Fukushima: For Want Of A Battery, A Nation Was Lost”
This reminds me of being in the military. We petty officers (NCOs) could run things like a swiss watch, while our officers routinely made decisions that either pissed us off or made us laugh at them.
The average American has no idea what is still going on at Fukushima. Those blown out reactors are still melting down, they are still polluting the Pacific Ocean, and we are still getting radioactive rain because of that.
Speaking of Chernobyl, many a Russian volunteered (and sometimes not) to sacrifice his life to build that concrete dome over the failed reactor. I read an article some while back that said that dome is nearing failure due to age and the radiation it receives non-stop. Chernobyl and it’s accompanying almost ghost town is a fascinating thing to Google.
Here’s a YouTube on Chernobyl that clearly illustrates what a problem it continues to be, and would also be a clue to how irresponsibly the Japanese are dealing with Fukushima. Corporate profits outweigh human health, so these issues are ignored by the corporate media. I now honestly believe Karl Marx was totally correct in his criticisms of capitalism.
Sounds like another cover story mixed with half-truths designed to shift blames around.
If electricity was the issue they could have tied a few lower voltage batteries together to get the valve opened.
I wonder why wasn’t any kind of manual safety release used. I find it hard to believe a critical safety mechanism would depend entirely on electricity. What if the electric cables are damaged in an accident.
This is either another BS cover story and/or there are serious design flaws in their safety mechanisms.
The chamber where the valves were can’t be opened by humans except if they wish to die. So naturally, people were reluctant to do that until it was too late. Understandably, would you do that?
Easier said than done.
2V volt batteries would require 6 times as many jumper cables,all with the correct terminals to connect the cells in series.This would require spare cable,electrical crimping tools,terminals and nuts and bolts of the correct size.The 2v batteries are also much larger and heavier than the 12v ones.
All of these would not be readily available.
Yes serious design flaws like building nuclear reactors in the first place!!
Any 10 year old can connect (6) 2V batteries in series and end up with a 12V battery, as Alex correctly stated. Almost all batteries internally are wired together in this fashion to produce the desired voltage. Huge lithium Ion batteries used in electric vehicles are built from individual 3.2V cells.
What a crazy story. They are in a nuclear POWER plant, generating and controlling electricity and the ENGINEERS there can’t come up with wire and connectors to make a 12 volt battery from 2v batteries?? Impossible.
I guess the advantage of dumbing down a population is that they will believe anything. I wonder if this story was floated in the German media.
Fort Calhoun Nebraska came within a few hours of a similar fate later that summer. They get utility power back on and saved it, but the story barely got 2 inches of column space in the back of any newspaper. The same people that are all in a tither over that tropical storm right now were probably going “Nebraska? Where’s that?” … “New Orleans? Isn’t that part of DIsneyworld?” **cough** … Indian Point … you are soooo right about the fact that humans are on the whole too stupid to run nuclear reactors …
And I just got mad every time I read about how they were pumping cooling water into empty broken reactor cores (once I had a clearer picture of their condition from Fairewinds) — they should have been dumping sand and borax on the corium, like Russia did at Chernobyl. And then more sand and more borax. And more and more and more until there was enough sand to soak up the Cesium and Strontium and make radioactive glass from the whole mess.
Just thought of a little addendum to that rant. I’ll add it, since I see someone has posted a video. They never really cleaned up Chernobyl. The big temporary concrete building has lasted for 25 years but it will crumble long before the mess inside it ceases to be dangerous. Also worth mentioning, they never cleaned up 3 Mile Island, or Hanford, or that experimental reactor in So Cal, or White Sands NM, or any of the analogous sites in Russia.
And an interesting little factoid about fission reactors: the longer they are in business, the more fission products they manufacture (duh). Someone did a coctail-napkin calculation when Fuku blew up, and estimated that they had a little over 2 metric tons of Cs-137 on the site. Just that one isotope. That and Sr-90 are of greatest concern, because they bioaccumulate and will continue to be around for centuries. Cs-134 and I-131 have short half lives but I-129 can be problematic …, if ‘civilization’ survives, these isotopes will be the topic of countless PhD theses.
But I digress. The nuclear byproducts on these several hundred sites around the world have been piling up for 50 or 60 years, and there are thousands of *tons* of them. A nuclear weapon only makes maybe a ten-thousandth as much fission product, a few pounds, perhaps. As these rustbucket fission plants blow up over the coming decades (and they WILL blow up, it’s a matter of probabilities), they will spew all that crap into the environment and contribute to that ongoing sixth mass extinction.
I will not comment on Dick’s idiotic post about ten year olds being able to fix Fukushima’s electrical problems, as I am too polite to write profanity here. Dick obviously does not have children, so he can write any crap he wants.
As for the video, I stopped watching it after the part showing the UN Commission decided everyone was deformed from being “scared”.
Everyone at the UN should be dragooned into a workforce and sent to Fukushima to start clean-up procedures. There is no other reasonable use for that organization of bureaucratic idiots.
Cliff Mass Weather Blog has an update on the modelling for the Halloween Howler coming along on the North-Eastern US Coast.
Bad news times two. First it’s modeled to settle in for two days, and worse, the pressure is forecast to be lower than the 1962 Columbus Day storm over the Pacific Northwest.
I was 7 and I still remember that storm like it was yesterday. I lived in BCs Lower Mainland. Our home was on top of a cut and the backfill for our yard simply vanished and we lost 15 feet of the property due to damming of groundwater flushed from the intense rains accompanying the storm. Trees went down everywhere, all over the area. Literally, there wasn’t a yard without a tree or two down.
Here’s wiki about the Columbus Day Storm:
The Russians have dumped hundreds, if not thousands, of containers with nuclear waste (spent fuel rods etc) in the Barents Sea outside Murmansk. Plus a few used up nuclear subs and navy ships… Just one more nuclear dump to add to the ever growing list…
“About halfway between Severomorsk and the Norwegian border lies Andreeva Bay, an environmental nightmare where the waters are completely devoid of life.
Leaks from the region’s largest nuclear waste storage facility mean no fish will ever swim in this fjord. Onshore, both the soil and the groundwater are badly contaminated.”
Watched some of the video. Strange. They have money for reenactments, but no money for emergency supplies — like 12 volt batteries (common everywhere). Everyone was working in the dark. What better way to advertise the safety of nuclear energy?
The safety valves have room for only one 12 volt battery inside their cages. I bet Tepco corporate officers finally noticed that after two years, thus giving them someone to finger other than themselves.
It appears that Tepco officers have agreed on a “fall guy” — some lowerlevel procurement chief. Just about anything from outer space would be less surreal than what we come up with.
Christian W, gawd…thanks but what horrid news.
DeVaul, I fully appreciate your disgust with the UN. We should withdraw from it, and kick the ambassadors out of NYC. My point in posting that video was only to demonstrate how dangerous nuclear power plants are.
I read an article a short while ago about the UN formally calling for monitoring of the internet because (drum roll), “terrorists use it.” I’d bet my bottom dollar that’s only their first step.
Also just within the last hour I’ve read two reports of a $43 TRILLION Tort lawsuit filed against the banksters regarding mortgage fraud. CNBC reported the story, and within 24 hours a CNBC executive’s two children were stabbed to death by their nanny, who supposedly then slit her own throat. There are screenshots of the CNBC story available online, but shortly after the murders CNBC removed that article from it’s website.
I had the same thought as others about connecting batteries in series. It’s something any high school physics student should be able to do, assuming there’s wire. The batteries don’t have to fit into a cage of any sort; they just have to be connected to the input terminals with wire.
It does help if you have parents who fix stuff, though. In the physics lab you get nice cables with alligator clips on the ends, and fully charged batteries, and volt meters. It’s DIY parents who teach you that you can do the same thing even when you’re confronted with a box of old batteries and a spool of wire. It doesn’t have to look pretty in order to work.
Regarding batteries, it’s not necessarily a matter of whether batteries being wired together would have resolved the problem. Having the required amperage necessary to operate the valves is what matters. I could wire up batteries to 12V that wouldn’t turn my Jeep’s motor over one time. That’s why car batteries are measured in cold cranking amps.
It’s not exactly, but somewhat similar to comparing horsepower in car engines. Having a lot of horsepower sounds cool, but torque is what gets your vehicle down the road.
BTW, the above post is mine. I’ve had 7/8 of my attention on NCAA all afternoon.
Elaborating on that post, I make no claim to know how nuke power plants work, but I have a pretty good idea from my exposure to both 1200PSI and 600PSI boiler systems from my navy experience onboard ships. To close a valve that turns the turbines that transfers energy to the reduction gears that turns the propeller shafts requires defeating the pressure being generated by the boilers. Those valves have many turns/ft on their worm gears, and the hand wheels are gigantic to operate those valves manually.
It’s not like some 120 lb kid throws a lever.
I would also like to point out that the USN lost the USS Thresher and the USS Scorpion (fast attack nuke powered subs) in the Atlantic also.
Reiterating my point, nuke power is a grand threat to all of humanity.
A major, major thing people forget is, the best citizens we can produce are TINKERS who SCREW AROUND WITH STUFF.
All the inventors I have known grew up taking apart things, making stuff for the hell of it, etc. Learning how to run a car is a learning experience. I changed my first engine when I was 17, for example. Learning how to jerry rig stuff is a skill, a mindset, a talent…which is fast fading.
Electronics, cars, everything is increasingly complicated and difficult to rig or even repair so the ability to do this slowly fades away.
I work with technology. And used to tinker with stuff when I was younger.
To continue your thought, Elaine, if you open your cellphone (which you can do with a T4 or T6 torx tool, no more regular screws) … you will find a circuit board on which the Arm processor is a ball-grid array. No contacts are visible, they are little balls of solder between the chip and the multilayer board. The resistors and capacitors on the board are too small to see (an it isn’t just our fading eyesight), you need a field microscope. The board was assembled by a pick-and-place machine, and before that it was layed out and etched and laminated by other computer-controlled machines. You can’t see what the resistor was connected to, because the surface mount pad it was soldered to goes to a ‘via’ which connects down through the board to a buried layer of connections.
I can read the color codes on an axial-lead resistor, the numbers represented by black, brown, red, orange, etc. … two digits and then a multiplier. A silver band for a 10%-er and a gold band for 5%. That knowledge is utterly useless now. I don’t think they even bother to put markings on the linear components any more.
So, if your circuit board has a problem, no matter how small, you send it to the grinders to be processed for metals (in your dreams). What really happens is it goes to the landfill with last Thanksgiving’s turkey carcass and assorted banana peels.
The idea that the workers at Fukushima could jerry-rig over 120 2-volt batteries using stripped wiring (from where?) while kneeling on a narrow catwalk in hazmat suits right outside a nuclear containment vessel that is melting down (and they know it) is patently absurd.
The people who built the place — the so-called “tinkerers” — were long gone. They took the money and ran, knowing full-well the joint would be operated by amateurs reading manuals and following rules with no real knowledge of what to do in a catastrophic failure of all “safety” systems.
The video shows about 20 safety release valves PER containment vessel. If you open just one valve while all the others are close, that valve will blow under the immense pressure of a nuclear reactor and the workers will be melted by boling hot steam, and they knew it. I doubt the army helicopter brought in several hundred 2-volt batteries, so they were screwed anyway you look at it. Taking car batteries from the parking lot was actually the best idea anyone had (assuming they actually did that).
Machinery this complicated and run on the edge of a knife with no margin for error cannot be jerry-rigged after a 9.0 earthquake and 30 foot tsunami.
They should never have been built. Tinkers must have morals, or their knowledge is useless.
@Jim R, I love your post about how the technology we use can’t be fixed by ordinary mortals anymore. But knowing what a resistor is can’t be useless knowledge, even if we can’t use it for anything. There’s a different mindset you get out of knowing that the machines are just mindbogglingly huge numbers of components hooked together, and that you know what the components are. It doesn’t seem like magic. (Unfortunately I don’t know enough about flash memory to feel that I get how it works, so it does seem magical that we carry around many gig of data on our keychains. I sort of got the floppies, and I got that hard-drives were big stacks of high-capacity floppies. But accessing stored data without any moving parts… hmm.)
‘I read an article a short while ago about the UN formally calling for monitoring of the internet because (drum roll), “terrorists use it.” I’d bet my bottom dollar that’s only their first step’
The UN is calling for a boycott [or is it girlcott?] of various companies, HP I think is one of them.
The UN is bad news, it was designed to be that way.
I didnt see a connection in the Nanny Killer and the 1%, maybe there is.
ELAINE you ugly old hag you really have it in for the Japs. We know why you are constantly hating on the Jews, its because of your ex hubbys family, but why the Japs? What did they ever do to you? ANSWER you stupid old bitch.
gnog gnog is a stupid twit. “Obvious troll is obvious.”
Elaine, only you could bring us this story, in this way. Lord knows I disagree with you about a number of issues, but I have always admired your intellectual tenacity. You’re a thinker and a big-picture watcher. Those are in short supply these days.
I don’t know where these trolls come from, but it is still better than the “invasion of the jewish sock puppets” that I witnessed here some years ago. That was truly irritating.