jwhit at melbpc.org.au
Wed Mar 16 09:04:13 AEDT 2011
At 11:26 PM 15/03/2011, Andy Farkas wrote:
>If some of the fuel rods have been damaged, then releases can occur in
I heard an interesting physicist on ABC this morning. He said that
the light water plants are far less dangerous than the Chernobyl
graphite 'cooled' plants because it's much more difficult for heavy
metals (what is actually radioactive) to be carried in air. Carbon
particles (dust and smoke) are lighter and therefore would carry in
the cloud and that is what happened across Europe. Rays are obviously
a different matter, but on a local level.
I would like to see a reliable chart that overlays the current spread
of whatever really is moving around out of those plants, the
half-life of the stuff, and the effect levels AND what protections
mitigate contamination. For example, is glass a protection? Is air
circulation into buildings a problem?
And why are so many people wearing facemasks in Japan? Is that
because of normal pollution levels or something to do with dust or
molds dislodged by the quake?
There was also a story about the storage of the spent fuel rods, the
fuel ponds, which were in the roof of the building that exploded and
in water filled pools in the precinct. There are thousands of those.
The person said the use of sea water to refill those ponds would be
corrosive on the covers of those rods. That doesn't sound good,
either. BUT what is the real risk? Is it to ground water? To air? To
those who would ever re-inhabit the area?
There is also an article in the Oz today bemoaning the poor
information coming from the IAEA re all the above questions.
I'm with Tom. We just don't know because this sort of engineering
problem hasn't occurred before with this sort of reactor. It's a
fluid, wicked problem.
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
jwhit at janwhitaker.com
Our truest response to the irrationality of the world is to paint or
sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
~Madeline L'Engle, writer
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