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most accurate info about the japan nuclear issues

Posted on 2011-03-17
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I am looking for the most technically acurate account of the issues at the nuclear plants in Japan , I need a VERY VERY technical synopsys of the issues and attemped resolutions


thanks

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Question by:NAMEWITHELD12
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Dave Baldwin earned 500 total points
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That will be available in 5 or 10 years.  Right now they're very busy.
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by:dbrunton
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by:aleghart
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Technically speaking, noone can get close enough to see what's really happening.  Even boots on the ground can't see inside.  And...even if they did...that information won't be made public for several years (if at all).

What info are you looking for, specifically?  A synopsis, by definition, cannot be technical.  It is a general outline of what's going on.

Quake shakes sensors at power generating plant.
Sensor trips initiate shutdown procedure.
Cool-down takes 2-3 days under normal operations.
Plant lost power, thus ability to run cooling system.
There is no manual override or fire department hookup to splash water.

Excessive heat generated pressure with steam.
Possible generation of hydrogen.
Explosion(s) takes out undetermined amount of the facility.
Loss of water increases heat generation.
Fuel heats to ridiculous temperature, possible melting rod cladding (metal).
Water pool would normally limit release of particles, but exposure to air means more release of particles.

Things to understand (from my layman's point of view):
Water is good for cooling and shielding.
Rod cladding controls emissions.
Heat generated by fissile material will weaken and destroy cladding, exposing fissile material.
Fissile material is not water soluble, so shouldn't be spread like a chemical spill
Salt water is bad for everything except cooling.  Corrosion makes this plant a total write-off.
If this is a typical system, cooling is two-part: dirty and clean sides.  Requires circulation of two systems plus a means to cool or replace water from the clean side.
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by:dbrunton
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http://mdn.mainichi.jp/

and make sure you click on the English button.  Once you've got the background of the event this seems to be very update and informative.
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