Friday, March 11, 2011

Nuclear Meltdown Possible In Japan

One of the damaged nuclear plants in Japan is unable to pump coolant. This is causing the temperature of the core to rise steadily and is causing some alarm.

From the Daily Planet Dispatch:
People living within three kilometers of the power plant have been evacuated as the engineers struggle to control the cooling of the reactor core. The nuclear plant automatically shuts down as the first line of defense in these kind of circumstances, but the failure of the water coolant flow to the core is supposed to be the second line of defense, and this appears to have failed, causing international concern of a vast scale nuclear accident.
Japan has long been sighted as a model of safe nuclear power, building their plants to withstand earthquakes, but apparently this one was bigger than expected and no one is sure what will happen.  A meltdown if it burns through the containment building, which is likely in that event, could reach the water-table and cause steam explosions.  These would send radioactive particles into the atmosphere and into the jet stream...which flows from Japan to North America.  Welcome to the global village!

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