Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The radioactivity in Fukushima is much higher than the announced

An independent panel of experts and scholars Nipponese began today an investigation into the nuclear crisis in central Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power, the epicenter of Japan's nuclear crisis. The first panel meeting came a day after the Japanese Nuclear Safety Agency (NISA) indicate that, according to a review of its estimates, the radioactivity emitted by the plant in the early days of the crisis could have been almost double the originally estimated up to 770,000 terabequereles.

Independent committee members, who do not rule out visiting the ailing plant, analyze the data and interrogated for several months with representatives of TEPCO, operator of Fukushima Daiichi, Executive and other bodies involved in crisis management. Today's meeting was opened by the Prime Minister, Naoto Kan, who urged the committee to work "independently of government" and was willing to answer questions from its members.

The panel, which plans to present its findings in summer 2012, is led by Yotaro Hatamura researcher, professor emeritus at the University of Tokyo. In addition to examining the causes and response to the crisis, the committee will study the regulation of nuclear safety in Japan, currently in charge of NISA, a body that has been criticized for its dependence on the Ministry of Industry, traditional energy developer atomic.

During the crisis in Fukushima, the NISA has regularly broadcast their own measurements and reports on the situation on the ground, severely damaged by the earthquake and tsunami of 11 March. Today, information disseminated through public broadcaster NHK, the agency said in the hours after the disaster took place between 800 and 1,000 kilos of hydrogen in units 1, 2 and 3 of the plant, a figure that is between 1.3 and 2.3 times higher than initially estimated by TEPCO.

Hydrogen caused loud explosions in the buildings of the reactors 1 and 3, 12 and March 14 respectively, while unit 2 suffered another explosion on the 15th that caused damage to its suppression pool. Moreover, according to estimates released Monday by the agency, the reactor 1 would have suffered the partial meltdown of its core just five hours after the tsunami, while the reactor 3 would have been 79 hours and 2 after about 80 hours later.

Under NISA, within six days after the disaster units 1, 2 and 3 drew nearly 770,000 terabequereles of iodine 131 and cesium 137, which is almost double the amount that is aimed at mid-April.

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