‘Checkmate’ = Fukushima reactor No. 4 SFP collapsing = The END (see related info down below.)
– Nuclear Engineer: The question is, why all of a sudden the urgency at Fukushima plant, what do they know? — They’re obviously feeling pressure, like it’s one move away from checkmate (AUDIO) (ENENews, Nov 1, 2013):
At 34:30 in
Tim Alexander: Chris, we were talking on the break about they seem to be in a hurry now to move these rods… My question to you was if the No. 4 unit… goes critical, can it spread to the other ones — it can right?
Chris Harris, former licensed Senior Reactor Operator and engineer: Yeah, if you raise the neutron flux to extend out through Unit 3 let’s say, there will be an effect on there — I’m not sure what the state of their neutron absorbers in those pools. Can you imagine that, one pool going critical and then all of a sudden, elements in another pool going critical also? […]
The question is, why all of a sudden the urgency — what do they know? They had an earthquake there. But we know that even from North Anna’s earthquake that happened here a year and a half ago, was that it took weeks to assess the damage there. And that plant was actually fixable […]
They’re obviously feeling pressure, like they’re one move away from checkmate.
The leakage of water from these cores is bad enough but the most dangerous thing is the cooling pool of unit 4. Now it is terribly dangerous because the entire hot core of reactor 4 had been removed and put in this cooling pool shortly before the tsunami. So, there was a hot core in this cooling pool the entire superstructure building was blown off in a hydrogen explosion.
The entire area is weakened and there is a great risk of an aftershock. Now this pool contains something on the order of 400.000 kg of hot plutonium. So, the thing that people should be aware of is that TEPCO is going to begin attempting to remove these rods from this pool to some other type of storage. This has never been done with plutonium rods that have been out of a core for such a short period of time.
There is a great danger of a thermonuclear reaction if these rods become exposed to the air and the cooling pool itself is just barely containing the temperature levels of the core as it is.
The media coverage of the situation has been almost non-existent. The public must become engaged and the governments must become engaged because this is a global threat. They say that one microgram of plutonium could theoretically kill a person.
There are billion micrograms in a kilogram and there are 400.000 hot kilograms in this pool. So, if these rods combust, if the set of rods begins a thermonuclear reaction, it will vaporize the water in the pool and the entire pool can become an uncontrolled nuclear reaction open to the air. These particles will be spread through the northern hemisphere.
This is perhaps the greatest threat humanity has ever faced. And I think you would acknowledge there has been far too little attention given to this at this point and the measures that the Japanese government is discussing at this point are not sufficient, I believe. Other governments must become engaged in this.