APR: your source for nuclear news and analysis since April 16, 2010

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Details of new, high rad levels at Fukushima Daiichi 1

Some details have in fact emerged about the radiation levels at Fukushima Daiichi No. 1 that prompted TEPCO to alert the Japanese government and the N&ISA.

The report by Kyodo News, Japan is indicating one reading at the plant site of 751 microsieverts per hour while another in a different location was 650. These were taken after 2:00 AM Monday, 3/14 local time. The limit or threshold is 500 microsieverts per hour. 500 microsieverts is 50 millirem per hour, using a measure more familiar here.

No further details are given except that seawater continues to be injected into reactor plants No. 1 and No. 3 at Fukushima Daiichi site.

At this moment, the cause for this is hard to interpret clearly not knowing the full situation; however, it seems likely that with core damage, some fisson products and perhaps fuel have been carried out with the water being released. This is by no means clear since we do not know the full extent of either the measures being taken either by procedure or by improvisation in the face of disaster, or the actual physical damages to the plants that could result in leakage of primary water outside the primary systems. Thus we must mark this story as still developing, although it seems encouraging that in the last several hours the reports have not worsened.

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