Nuclear safety 101

by Jaakko Nissiat 2011-03-12 22:28:49

About two days ago a magnitude 8.8(8.9?) earthquake, a tsunami and a number of aftershocks hit the east coast of japan. Among the sheer amount of human tradegy there was one event that really stood out.

The Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant suffered a power failure as the tsunami cut off-site power and apparently made the on-site diesel generators be counted as off-site power source as well. This led to the coolant circulation system failure, temperature buildup in the core and currently some kind of explosion, some radiation leak but apparently no core meltdown at least. This has had me pondering all day...

  • Why is the plant cooling dependent of off-site power?
  • Why is the on-site power off-site power when seen from the generator room?
  • Why is there no non-electric emergency cooling?

I thought maybe the following system could be considered:

  1. An array of stirling engines is connected to both the hot and the cold side of the coolant channels and they all generate on-site electricity.
  2. Another array of stirlings is connected to the hot coolant channels and an external cold source(sea water?) and also generate electricity.
  3. Third array of stirlings pump "manually" i.e. they are connected to pumps and when the plant operates normally are disconnected by clutch discs kept open by electric magnets connected to the both off-site and on-site power and only operate if both power sources are lost.

This would make me think there would always be sufficient cooling power even if all possibilities of getting electricity to run the pumps is lost. The most reliable version of stirling should be used, about one half of any array should be enough to cool the reactor and at most one third of an array should be taken offline for maintenance at any point in time.

Disclaimer: I am not any kind of professional on all things nucular and this is just off the top of my head. If there is a patent for this type of safety, I am not associated with it and if there is not, there won't be now. =)

Nuclear power Safety Japan Earthquake Tsunami
I hope you'll soon be able to afford a bukacp system and possibly a generator with an ATS. Thanks for being there on all the other days (especially Night Rythms) and good luck getting back online again.-kps: Any prospects for streaming your programs online? I have some friends out of the area to whom I'd recommend your station.
by: Rosana
I disagree. BMW has cnhaged their products in later years and have switched to cheaper plastic in their cooling systems which has resulted in many, many catastrophic overheats. The E39 models are notorious for cooling system failures, especially the V-8 models. I'm considering changing to an all aluminum Zionsville radiator and expansion tank in my E39 so that I don't have to constantly worry about overheating as I have no confidence in the BMW plastic cooling components.
by: Vikash
Thank you very much for all your videos and help. I have oriaingl radiators on my 1997 528iA with 223000 km and 1998 M3 with 128000 km. Generally, the 6 cyl BMW cooling is good (except for the plastic pump impeller, which in case of my 1997 was metal as I pulled it out and checked), What this video didn't cover is the electric AC fan. I had the resistor for the first speed failed so it was always off when AC was working and which may have resulted in the overheating. http://doixiqplt.com [url=http://pkvkgyuto.com]pkvkgyuto[/url] [link=http://rfhoppzt.com]rfhoppzt[/link]
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