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Mar11-11, 09:23 AM
Astronuc's Avatar
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Quote Quote by nismaratwork View Post
That certainly makes sense... so the reaction is already dead, but they're concerned about the remote possibility of... what exactly? A rupture in the reactor vessels being contaminated with seawater, and visa versa?

I assumed that pumping a load of neutron toxins, control rods, etc... into a reactor was pretty useful at keeping anything worse than radiological contamination from occuring... maybe a bad assumption.
They would be concerned about maintaining coolability of the cores according to their mandatory requirements. They should have a plan for "what if".

It appears from this article that Units 1, 2 and 3 were operating, but shutdown because of the quake.

The emergency power system for Units 1 and 2 failed. Hopefully they can restore the system, or use contingency plans.

Without power, the would be concerned about the coolant getting too hot, which means higher than normally allowed, but which still could be within design parameters for emergency situations. However, we prefer not to allow the core to get outside of normal or anticipated conditions.

Basically, they don't want the primary cooling systems to over-pressurize.