Extremely Radioactive Snow in Fukushima! Dr. Chris Busby

Published on Jan 18, 2013

FUKUSHIMA black snow

Please subscribe to this YouTube channel. They provided the info on the “hot snow readings” of Fukushima snow.
also see this video:

Shocking Tokyo Japan Radiation Test by Dr. Chris Busby (Fukushima Fallout)
Dr Chris Busby: radioactivity in apartment in central Tokyo Part 1
In this and Part 2
Dr Busby describes measurements made on an air conditing unit filter from inside an apartment in central Tokyo. This was sent by a lady in Tokyo who wanted to know if it was safe to live there. The filter only collected air from inside the apartment. It shows the presence of 130000Bq/kg radio Caesium in the dust plus enriched Uranium and for the first time Lead-210/Polonium-210. The apartment was evacuated from the Tuesday after the catastrophe and the machine switched off; and the family returned 5 months later. This and much other information about the health effects and cover ups, including leaked data are to be found in Dr Busby’s new book in Japanese: the Horror of Fukushima, published on 25th July by Kodansha in Tokyo

PLEASE COPY AND REPOST ANYWHERE YOU CAN. MIRROR, PASTE, LINK or whatever you can to spread Professor Chris Busby’s message about Japan and the nuclear industry’s intentional coverup of Fukushima radioactive problem… how Japan is trucking tons of radioactive waste to south Japan, etc. He’s working on making supplements that block some of the radioactive nucleotides from attaching themselves to the DNA, etc.

Vital essential information on Fukushima and Japan!
Synonyms: basic, bottom-line, cardinal, coal-and-ice, constitutive, critical, crucial, decisive, fundamental, heavy*, imperative, important, indispensable, integral, key, life-or-death, meaningful, meat-and-potatoes, name, name-of-the-game, necessary, needed, nitty-gritty, prerequisite, required, requisite, significant, underlined, urgent

Original upload here:
Chris Busby on radioactivity displacing supplements
Uploaded by radioactivebsr on Sep 19, 2011

*Note: Single radiation dose of 2,000 millisieverts (200,000 millirems) and above causes serious illness. See also exposure list below.
Half-life of some radioactive elements

[NOTE: Half-life is the time taken for a radioactive substance to decay by half.] * Cesium-134 ~ 2 years * Cesium-137 ~ 30 years * Iodine-131 ~ 8 days * Plutonium-239 ~ 24,200 years * Ruthenium-103 ~ 39 days [Ruthenium is a fission product of uranium-235.] * Ruthenium-106 ~ 374 days * Strontium-90 ~ 28.85 years [Strontium-90 is a product of nuclear fission and is found in large amounts in spent nuclear fuel and in radioactive waste from nuclear reactors.] * Uranium-234 ~ 246,000 years * Uranium-235 ~ 703.8 million years * Uranium-238 ~ 4.468 billion years


Russia Stunned After Japanese Plan To Evacuate 40 Million Revealed

on Apr 15th, 2012

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A new report circulating in the Kremlin today prepared by the Foreign Ministry on the planned re-opening of talks with Japan over the disputed Kuril Islands during the next fortnight states that Russian diplomats were “stunned” after being told by their Japanese counterparts that upwards of 40 million of their peoples were in “extreme danger” of life threatening radiation poisoning and could very well likely be faced with forced evacuations away from their countries eastern most located cities… including the world’s largest one, Tokyo.

The Kuril Islands are located in Russia’s Sakhalin Oblast region and stretch approximately 1,300 km (810 miles) northeast from Hokkaidō, Japan, to Kamchatka, Russia, separating the Sea of Okhotsk from the North Pacific Ocean. There are 56 islands and many more minor rocks. It consists of Greater Kuril Ridge and Lesser Kuril Ridge, all of which were captured by Soviet Forces in the closing days of World War II from the Japanese.

The “extreme danger” facing tens of millions of the Japanese peoples is the result of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster that was a series of equipment failures, nuclear meltdowns, and releases of radioactive materials at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, following the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on 11 March 2011.

According to this report, Japanese diplomats have signaled to their Russian counterparts that the returning of the Kuril Islands to Japan is “critical” as they have no other place to resettle so many people that would, in essence, become the largest migration of human beings since the 1930’s when Soviet leader Stalin forced tens of millions to resettle Russia’s far eastern regions.

Important to note, this report continues, are that Japanese diplomats told their Russian counterparts that they were, also, “seriously considering” an offer by China to relocate tens of millions of their citizens to the Chinese mainland to inhabit what are called the “ghost cities,” built for reasons still unknown and described, in part, by London’s Daily Mail News Service in their 18 December 2010 article titled: “The Ghost Towns Of China: Amazing Satellite Images Show Cities Meant To Be Home To Millions Lying Deserted” that says:

“These amazing satellite images show sprawling cities built in remote parts of China that have been left completely abandoned, sometimes years after their construction. Elaborate public buildings and open spaces are completely unused, with the exception of a few government vehicles near communist authority offices. Some estimates put the number of empty homes at as many as 64 million, with up to 20 new cities being built every year in the country’s vast swathes of free land.”

Foreign Ministry experts in this report note that should Japan accept China’s offer, the combined power of these two Asian peoples would make them the largest super-power in human history with an economy larger than that of the United States and European Union combined and able to field a combined military force of over 200 million.

To how dire the situation is in Japan was recently articulated by Japanese diplomat Akio Matsumura who warned that the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear plant may ultimately turn into an event capable of extinguishing all life on Earth.

According to the Prison Planet News Service:

“Matsumura posted [this] startling entry on his blog following a statement made by Japan’s former ambassador to Switzerland, Mitsuhei Murata, on the situation at Fukushima.

Speaking at a public hearing of the Budgetary Committee of the House of Councilors on 22 March 2012, Murata warned that “if the crippled building of reactor unit 4 – with 1,535 fuel rods in the spent fuel pool 100 feet (30 meters) above the ground – collapses, not only will it cause a shutdown of all six reactors but will also affect the common spent fuel pool containing 6,375 fuel rods, located some 50 meters from reactor 4,” writes Matsumura.

In both cases the radioactive rods are not protected by a containment vessel; dangerously, they are open to the air. This would certainly cause a global catastrophe like we have never before experienced. He stressed that the responsibility of Japan to the rest of the world is immeasurable. Such a catastrophe would affect us all for centuries. Ambassador Murata informed us that the total numbers of the spent fuel rods at the Fukushima Daiichi site excluding the rods in the pressure vessel is 11,421.”

Disturbingly, the desperate situation facing Japan is, also, facing the United States as Russian military observers overflying the US this week as part of the Open Skies Treaty are reporting “unprecedented” amounts of radiation in the Western regions of that country, a finding that was further confirmed by scientists with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute who have confirmed that a wave of highly radioactive waste is headed directly for the US west coast.

Important to note is that this new wave of Fukushima radiation headed towards the US is in addition to earlier radiation events that American scientists are now blaming for radioactive particles from Japan being detected in California kelp.

Though the news of this ongoing global catastrophe is still being heavily censored in the US, the same cannot be said about Japan, and as recently reported by the leading Japanese newspaper The Mainichi Daily News that reports:

“One of the biggest issues that we face is the possibility that the spent nuclear fuel pool of the No. 4 reactor at the stricken Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant will collapse. This is something that experts from both within and outside Japan have pointed out since the massive quake struck. TEPCO, meanwhile, says that the situation is under control. However, not only independent experts, but also sources within the government say that it’s a grave concern.

The storage pool in the No. 4 reactor building has a total of 1,535 fuel rods, or 460 tons of nuclear fuel, in it. The 7-story building itself has suffered great damage, with the storage pool barely intact on the building’s third and fourth floors. The roof has been blown away. If the storage pool breaks and runs dry, the nuclear fuel inside will overheat and explode, causing a massive amount of radioactive substances to spread over a wide area. Both the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and French nuclear energy company Areva have warned about this risk.

A report released in February by the Independent Investigation Commission on the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident stated that the storage pool of the plant’s No. 4 reactor has clearly been shown to be “the weakest link” in the parallel, chain-reaction crises of the nuclear disaster. The worse-case scenario drawn up by the government includes not only the collapse of the No. 4 reactor pool, but the disintegration of spent fuel rods from all the plant’s other reactors. If this were to happen, residents in the Tokyo metropolitan area would be forced to evacuate.

Even though this crisis in Japan has been described as “a nuclear war without a war” and the US Military is being reported is now stocking up on massive amounts of anti-radiation pills in preparation for nuclear fallout, there remains no evidence at all the ordinary peoples are being warned about this danger in any way whatsoever.


Fukushima Daiichi: Only a matter of time, China Syndrome

Uploaded by on Dec 5, 2011

on a personal note, I’m winding down from reporting on Fukushima. It has been nearly 9 months, and I think we all know what kind of news will be birthed soon… not to mention there has been fair warning of a hydrovolcanic explosion. I have made most of my videos available for “remix” or reupload to your channel. I suggest you do so, if you wish. All you have to do is push the darn remix button and YT pretty much does the rest. As of yesterday, I can no longer offer that feature on any more uploads… Take care everyone.

*Note: Single radiation dose of 2,000 millisieverts (200,000 millirems) and above causes serious illness. See also exposure list below.
Half-life of some radioactive elements

[NOTE: Half-life is the time taken for a radioactive substance to decay by half.] * Cesium-134 ~ 2 years * Cesium-137 ~ 30 years * Iodine-131 ~ 8 days * Plutonium-239 ~ 24,200 years * Ruthenium-103 ~ 39 days [Ruthenium is a fission product of uranium-235.] * Ruthenium-106 ~ 374 days * Strontium-90 ~ 28.85 years [Strontium-90 is a product of nuclear fission and is found in large amounts in spent nuclear fuel and in radioactive waste from nuclear reactors.]

FAIR USE NOTICE: These Videos may contain copyrighted ( © ) material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of ecological, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, & social justice issues, etc. It is believed that this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior general interest in receiving similar information for research and educational purposes

Children’s Heart Attacks in Fukushima 6 month anniversary

Parents this is a must hear report from Chris Busby, especially if you’re living in Japan. But to be honest, this disaster isn’t going away anytime soon and as a result the radiation will also have cumulative effects. So parents anywhere in the Northern hemisphere need to be diligent by getting into a routine of cleansing the radiation from the body and you can make if fun with sea salt and bentonite clay in the bubble bath! Keep them out of the rain and get them on a diet high in kelp from seaweed and miso soup is also highly beneficial so it helps to start learning how to prepare Chinese meals.

Check out the Radiation Remedies and Anti-dotes category in the link to the right for all kinds of suggestions. Glutothione (sp?) is a new supplement I’ve recently heard of that’s supposed to be highly effective in fighting radiation in the environment.

Uploaded by MsMilkytheclown on Sep 11, 2011

Cancer won’t kill people if heart attacks kill them first.

Uploaded by radioactivebsr on Sep 11, 2011

6 month black aniversary of Fuku. 10 year black aniversary of 9/11

ECRR, http://www.euradcom.org

BSRRW.org Ditta Rietuma behind camera

Here’s the link from Enenews so you can read about those headlines. Complete Disaster is an UNDERESTIMATE of unimaginable magnitude. And it keeps getting worse.

The nuclear updates out of Japan have slowed to nearly Zero. BEWARE! Read between the lines. (I’m guessing things are Totally out of Control)… but that’s just an estimate, after watching this “performance” on a daily basis. On the other hand, they could well have things totally fixed. Who am I to say?

100x Background Radiation in Fukushima City

I went to Fukushima City on July 25, 2011 to compare Medcom Geiger Counters and found readings over 10.0 micro sieverts (uSV) common. This is 100 times Osaka background levels (0.1uSV). The Fukushima health authority, Dr. Shunichi Yamashita, says this is safe. Parents in Fukushima with the Fukushima Network disagree and need our support. They are working to get children out. Would you want your child playing in the grass in this city?

Agenda 21 For Dummies

Japan Sewage Sludge Contamination

Good evidence that cesium-gas residue is visible at Fukushima…

as evidenced by
Fukushima: Lethal Levels of Radiation & the Implications (Arnie Gundersen)

TEPCO has discovered locations on the Fukushima plant site with lethal levels of external gamma radiation. Fairewinds takes a close look at how this radiation might have been deposited and how similar radioactive material would have been released offsite.

[NOTE: Half-life is the time taken for a radioactive substance to decay by half.] * Cesium-134 ~ 2 years * Cesium-137 ~ 30 years * Iodine-131 ~ 8 days * Plutonium-239 ~ 24,200 years * Ruthenium-103 ~ 39 days [Ruthenium is a fission product of uranium-235.] * Ruthenium-106 ~ 374 days * Strontium-90 ~ 28.85 years [Strontium-90 is a product of nuclear fission and is found in large amounts in spent nuclear fuel and in radioactive waste from nuclear reactors.] * Uranium-234 ~ 246,000 years * Uranium-235 ~ 703.8 million years * Uranium-238 ~ 4.468 billion years

Chris Busby – Japanese Air to be at Least 300 times Worse than Chernobyl

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Uploaded by on Aug 2, 2011

Dr. Chris Busby article
Japanese air to be at least 300 times worse than the air during Chernobyl

Fukushima “A Disaster beyond imagining” – Prof. Chris Busby

Those are the only 2 links I’ll leave you with today. I tried to edit out the Japanese translation part for you, but my computer puked out 3/4 the way through and I lost it. Here’s the original Ustream video.
************and a special recommendation for this one!!!!***********
Lying Politicians And Words

*Note: Single radiation dose of 2,000 millisieverts (200,000 millirems) and above causes serious illness. See also exposure list below.
Half-life of some radioactive elements

[NOTE: Half-life is the time taken for a radioactive substance to decay by half.] * Cesium-134 ~ 2 years * Cesium-137 ~ 30 years * Iodine-131 ~ 8 days * Plutonium-239 ~ 24,200 years * Ruthenium-103 ~ 39 days [Ruthenium is a fission product of uranium-235.] * Ruthenium-106 ~ 374 days * Strontium-90 ~ 28.85 years [Strontium-90 is a product of nuclear fission and is found in large amounts in spent nuclear fuel and in radioactive waste from nuclear reactors.] * Uranium-234 ~ 246,000 years * Uranium-235 ~ 703.8 million years * Uranium-238 ~ 4.468 billion years

Fukushima Japan Update 7/7/11

Lots of great links provided below…

Uploaded by on Jul 7, 2011

Climate Change Update (08 July 2011) Russia (Nuclear Event)

Watch the TEPCO Livecam AND the TBS/JNN Livecam Exclusively Here!

Japan pensioners volunteer to tackle nuclear crisis

video about people who have worked in nuclear power plants and how it affected their lives

The Containment of Fukushima

It has been confirmed that there are 29 cases of falsification, which were related to damage in many parts of the reactor pressure vessel such as core shroud, jet pump, access hole cover, feed water spurger, on-core monitor housing and others…

PLEASE SIGN this link to PETITION for EPA to MONITOR BETTER food, air, water, etc.

【Bilingual@English】 Recovery efforts Workers internal exposure radiation FUKUSHIMA



Yakuza sending Cleanup Workers to Fukushima

link to article to the above video:

【Bilingual@English】ECCS is broken 非常用炉心冷却系も壊れていた
Reactor 3 high pressure injection broken

*Note: Single radiation dose of 2,000 millisieverts (200,000 millirems) and above causes serious illness. See also exposure list below.
Half-life of some radioactive elements

[NOTE: Half-life is the time taken for a radioactive substance to decay by half.] * Cesium-134 ~ 2 years * Cesium-137 ~ 30 years * Iodine-131 ~ 8 days * Plutonium-239 ~ 24,200 years * Ruthenium-103 ~ 39 days [Ruthenium is a fission product of uranium-235.] * Ruthenium-106 ~ 374 days * Strontium-90 ~ 28.85 years [Strontium-90 is a product of nuclear fission and is found in large amounts in spent nuclear fuel and in radioactive waste from nuclear reactors.] * Uranium-234 ~ 246,000 years * Uranium-235 ~ 703.8 million years * Uranium-238 ~ 4.468 billion years

Dutchsinse: Radiation Measurement plan St Louis to California and back

Part 1

Part 2

From: dutchsinse  | Apr 25, 2011 

If you wish to help in anyway, please contact me via private message here on youtube.

If you want to help out financially, or some other way, any gift can be sent to:

dork2door@yahoo.com on Paypal.

http://www.paypal.com … click on the send money/gift button.

Will be travelling, starting next week, May 1st 2011, heading from Saint Louis Missouri .. westward towards Denver Colorado… then south towards New Mexico.. then west again to California…. then north towards Seattle/British Columbia, double back eastward towards North Dakota.. then south back to Saint Louis Missouri.

This plan most likey will have additional stops, and changes along the way.. but its the rough plan I intend to follow.

Japan Plant Fuel Melted Partway Through Reactors

Fri, 15 Apr 2011 17:29 CDT


© Athit Perawongmetha/Getty Images
(Apr. 15) – Abandoned flowers wilt on Tuesday in the exclusion zone surrounding Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Nuclear fuel has melted inside three reactors at the severely damaged facility, says an expert assessment published on Friday
Nuclear fuel has melted in three reactors at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and fallen to the lower sections of their container vessels, raising the specter of overheated material compromising a container and causing a massive radiation release, the Atomic Energy Society of Japan said in a report released on Friday (see GSN, April 15).

The group played down the possibility of a container breach, though, noting that only a small amount of fuel had melted so far and affected material had assumed a granulated structure and remained relatively cool, Kyodo News reported. The six-reactor plant was crippled by the 9.0-magnitude earthquake and devastating tsunami that hit Japan on March 11; the confirmed death toll from the events now exceeds 12,000 people.

The melted fuel was thought to have dispersed uniformly across the lower portions of the containers of reactors No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3, making the material highly unlikely to resume the fission process in a “recriticality,” according to the organization, which said fuel rods in all three reactors had been harmed. Fuel in the No. 1 and No. 2 reactors has made contact with air, while the No. 3 reactor’s rods have remained underwater, the group said.

Bringing the fuel under control could take between two and three months if restoration work moved forward as expected, said Takashi Sawada, the group’s deputy chairman. The organization based its assessment on information provided by the Japanese Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency and by Tokyo Electric Power, the plant’s operator.

Plant personnel pressed ahead in efforts to prevent additional radioactive material from escaping the site, deploying steel barriers around a No. 2 reactor pipeline and proceeding with the insertion of nitrogen gas into the No. 1 reactor to prevent additional hydrogen blasts. Pressure in the No. 1 reactor has fallen to a certain degree, pointing to the possible escape of air, but radiation in the area has remained largely unchanged.

Tokyo Electric Power indicated it could drop sandbags filled with zeolite into the nearby ocean as soon as Friday to help curb the spread of radioactive contaminants (Kyodo News I, April 15). Silt fencing was deployed in front of screening at the No. 3 and No. 4 reactors for containing radioactive water, the International Atomic Energy Agency said on Thursday (International Atomic Energy Agency release, April 15).

Workers earlier this week transferred roughly 660 tons of radiation-tainted water out of an underground passage, but fluid flooding the area reached its original depth by Friday morning, Kyodo News quoted the atomic safety agency as saying. Contaminated water has hindered efforts to restore cooling mechanisms needed to help prevent additional radioactive material from escaping the site.

A nuclear waste treatment area intended to receive the water was still undergoing inspection for possible weak points in pipelines.”‘I’m hoping that work to stop water leaks at the (facility) is finished as soon as possible to start channeling the water there,” said Industry Minister Banri Kaieda said on Friday (Kyodo News I).

Fresh water continued to be transferred into reactors No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3, the U.N. nuclear watchdog said. Conditions remained consistent at the No. 5 and No. 6 reactors (International Atomic Energy Agency release).

Soil samples taken at the facility between March 31 and April 4 contained small amounts of plutonium, Kyodo News reported on Friday. The finding marked the third detection of plutonium traces at the site (Kyodo News I).

Radioactive iodine and cesium levels might increased dozens of times over in groundwater close to the No. 1 and No. 2 reactors between April 6 and 13 (Kyodo News II, April 15). Strontium also turned up in soil close to the facility for the first time, the Sydney Morning Herald reported on Friday.

Tokyo Electric Power was still developing a longer-term strategy for stabilizing plant conditions, company president Masataka Shimizu said (Danielle Demetriou, Sydney Morning Herald, April 15).

Specialists with Toshiba, one supplier of plant components, said conditions could be brought under control “in several months,” Norio Sasaki, the firm’s chief executive, said on Thursday. A plan developed by the company calls for the removal of fuel from reactor containers to start after five years and for decontamination to take place over another five years, the New York Times reported on Thursday.

Hitachi, which has developed a separate plan to decommission the facility, said Toshiba’s proposal was too hopeful and suggested the fuel removal process alone could take a decade to complete.

The status of the nuclear fuel at the site would affect the speed of dismantlement, said Tetsuo Matsumoto, a nuclear engineering professor with Tokyo City University. “Will it still be shaped like rods? Or will it have melted and collapsed into a big mass?” the expert asked. “It could be 10 years or it could be 30. You just won’t know until you open up the reactor” (Hiroko Tabuchi, New York Times, April 14).

Tokyo Electric Power on Wednesday said the deterioration of spent fuel stored in the No. 4 reactor’s cooling pond appeared confined, the Asahi Shimbun reported. Fuel in the reactor was only partly compromised, the company indicated (Asahi Shimbun I, April 15).

The Japanese government on Friday indicated a smaller quantity of radioactive contaminants had been poured into the ocean in a controlled dump of low-level radioactive water than previously suspected, Kyodo News reported. Tokyo Electric Power suggested the 10,393 tons of water jettisoned between April 4 and 10 contained up to 170 billion becquerels of contaminants, but the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency estimated the total amount released to fall around 150 billion becquerels (Kyodo News III, April 15).

The U.S. Energy Department was sending five massive steel containers and a tractor trailer for holding contaminated water from the plant, the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo indicated on Thursday (Kyodo News IV, April 14).

Fukushima University experts have plotted out the spread of air-based radioactive materials from the plant using samples taken late last month from 370 points around Fukushima prefecture, the Asahi Shimbun reported on Friday (Asahi Shimbun II, April 15).

In excess of 100 academic specialists intend next month to launch an investigation of the ecological and safety implications of radioactive contaminants released from the facility, Kyodo News reported. Members of the team are expected to help the Fukushima government gather soil samples from 1,500 points along 62 miles of coastline and as far as 37 miles from the ocean (Kyodo News V, April 14).

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on Friday said specialists in his country “will assess the impact of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant accident on the environment and will also conduct environmental monitoring” (Kyodo News V, April 15).

Participating agencies would include the Russian Atomic Energy Ministry and Russian Meteorological Service, ITAR-Tass quoted Russian Geographical Society Vice President Artur Chilingarov as saying. The monitoring “starts on April 22 and will continue 24 days,” he said (ITAR-Tass, April 15).

Update from Fairewinds Assoc. on Fukushima Nuclear crisis


From: dutchsinse | Apr 7, 2011

Visit their site here:


Video: ABC News, U.S. Officials Alarmed By Japanese Handling of Nuclear Crisis

ABC has some pretty good coverage of the crisis unfolding at the Fukushima nuclear plant with several back to back stories starting with Congressmen Henry Waxman who express’s dire concern about the situation with the damaged reactors,  then coverage of the suicide mission with news from their loved ones surfacing and then of course they wrap it up with Diane Sawyer and network correspondent discussing the worse case scenario.

The ABC video player is embedded in the following news story by Martha Radditz and is not transferrable to this format, go here:

U.S. Officials Alarmed By Japanese Handling of Nuclear Crisis….Fear Fukushima Could Become ‘Deadly For Decades’



Here Steven Chu details the serious nature of the accident reassuring that US officials are in Japan monitoring the situation (from a safe distance, of course) since American interests are at stake too.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu – this is more serious than 3 Mile Island and we need to send are own people to Japan to get straight answers

Spent Fuel Pools at Fukushima

With all the confusion about what’s going on in Japan with the crippled nuclear facility, it’s difficult to know who to believe. The Union of Concerned Scientists is an independent organization of highly credible scientists who haven’t sold out to corporate interests and don’t conform to pressure from the government to suppress information. Their mission is to serve the public by bringing scientific knowledge to us in a way we can understand. Here’s a good explanation of what’s going on with the crisis at reactor #4 at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear plant.

Because of their high radioactivity, fuel rods continue to produce very significant heat even after they are no longer useful for generating electricity and are removed from the reactor core. Such “spent fuel” rods need to be continually cooled for many years to prevent them from heating to a level where they would suffer damage.

To cool the rods after they are removed from the reactor core, they are placed on racks in a spent fuel pool that circulates cooled water around them. This water is circulated by pumps that are run using electricity from the power grid. Typically these pumps do not have backup power from deisel generators or batteries, so if power from the grid is interrupted, as it is in the case of the Japanese earthquake, they will stop operating.

Once the cooling pumps stop, the water in the spent fuel pools will begin to heat up and will eventually start to boil off. The pools are typically 45 feet deep with the fuel rods stored in the lower 15 feet of the pool, so 30 feet of water would have to boil off before exposing the rods. That could take several days, so this issue may only be appearing now.

The pool at Fukushima Dai-Ichi Unit 4 is a particular problem since the fuel rods in it were only removed from the reactor core during a refueling of the reactor in December 2010. Therefore, they still have a very high level of radiation and are generating more heat than the spent fuel at the other reactors at the Dai-Ichi site.

The spent fuel pools for the Dai-Ichi reactors are located on an upper floor in the reactor building (see red circle in figure). The pools are outside the primary containment of the reactor, but inside the reactor building, which is the secondary containment. Typically any radioactivity released from the pool will be contained by the reactor building, which is maintained at less than atmospheric pressure so air flows into the building rather than out. The air in the building is filtered to remove the radioactivity before it is released outside.

As the water in the pool heats up and evaporates, the vapor will carry some radiation with it. This includes tritium and radioactive particles in the water.

If the water level in the pool drops low enough to expose the spent fuel, the fuel rods can suffer the same kinds of damage as fuel in the reactor core that is expose. If only a small length of the rods is exposed, they will get hot enough to create steam, but the steam flowing along the exposed surface of the rod will cool it enough that the rod’s cladding will not reach the high temperature required to react with the steam and create hydrogen.

Once the water has dropped low enough to expose several feet of the length of the fuel rods, they can become hot enough that the zirconium cladding of the rods will react with the steam and release hydrogen.

Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) has said there was a hydrogen explosion that damaged the Unit 4 reactor building on Tuesday morning in Japan (Monday afternoon U.S. time), reportedly blowing a 26-foot wide hole in the side of the building. If this explosion was due to hydrogen, that hydrogen very likely came from the spent fuel since there is no other clear source (this reactor was not operating when the earthquake hit). And if the spent fuel produced the hydrogen, that indicates that the water level in the spent fuel pool must have been low enough to have exposed a significant fraction of the fuel rods.

Continued here: