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Comment Potentially Good (Score 1) 374

The basic premise of this idea is not a bad one. Japan already has a similar mechanism in place for earthquakes. All Japanese-made cell phones are embedded with an alarm that is triggered by the early earthquake warning system (It only sets off the alarm for the people in the area expected to be affected). However, I think the reason it works is because it has a distinct alarm noise that is built in, not able to be disabled (even in silent mode), and there is no text to read. It helps give people a few moments to prepare or get to cove because they know immediately what it means. In those cases, quick conveyance of messages is key, as pointed out. Getting a text on a tiny screen is very useless for people with impaired vision or people who are driving. Perhaps a better solution would be to have the alarm indicate that they should quickly listen to their nearest source of the emergency broadcast system (radio, television, internet). The information is still passed on more quickly than before, but with much less risk, and much less annoyance if people don't care or are unable to read the messages they receive. That being said, Congress needs to carefully think about what messages are worth triggering the alarm for, or people will simply look for ways to disable it once they get too many messages that are not important. The Japan example is easy, earthquakes are universally feared and an early warning is highly desired. A message about the change of our terror alert might not be as welcomed.

Comment Re:Persective indeed (Score 1) 370

Oh, I didn't mean that it was my concern because it was dangerous, I just meant that it is waste that needs to be stored, and sooner or later we will run out of space to put it. Right? This issue will need to be addressed eventually, either through an advance in recycling technology or a way to generate the same amount of energy on less fuel.

Comment Re:Japan to raise severity level of Fukushima acci (Score 1) 370

I also arrived at the similar ~11PBq (11007.5 Tbq). I will take your next statement a step further with a rough mathematical approximation. This will be based on things that can be disputed, of course, but it's just for ballpark sake. The wikipedia article states that cesium-137 was being measured. According to mitnse.com, cesium-137 has a yield of 6.1%, and iodine-131 a yield of 2.8%. From that we can say that masswise, just under half (45%) of the amount of iodine-131 was released as cesium-137. WolframAlpha says that cesium-137 has a radioactivity of 3.214 TBq per gram. That comes out to about 3424.86 grams from the 11007.5 TBq. The calculated release of iodine-131 would come to 1572.07 grams of iodine-131. Iodine-131 has a radioactivity of 4598.8 TBq per gram. This would indicate that the released Bq would have been about 7229621.19 TBq, or 7.23 EBq. Of course, since iodine has a short half life, it is not a concern in the long-term.

This is of course, assuming everyone goes exactly to model so it is not terribly reliable, but you can get a rough idea. It is also based on my hilariously bad understanding of math, so if I'm out of my element feel free to correct me.

Comment Re:Persective (Score 1) 370

I agree coal and oil are not a valid solution, but I'm not convinced that nuclear fission is either. Accidents are not my primary concern though, it's the waste that bothers me. Hopefully this accident will bring some revived thinking to either how to improve the nuclear process (or at least start replacing such old technology like in Fukushima) or a viable renewable solution.

Comment Re:"May be" "Possibly" "Calm down" "Sleep" (Score 1) 280

Not to mention that the "allowed level" they are basing it on is not relevant in this type of situation. They are basing it off of the standards for drinking water absent any nuclear leak (i.e. drinking water that you would be drinking for your entire life) and as such, the limit is about 0.1 becquerels per liter (incredibly small). You can see this information in question 3 of this Q&A http://japan.usembassy.gov/e/p/tp-20110324-73.html

Comment Re:"May be" "Possibly" "Calm down" "Sleep" (Score 1) 280

There actually was a story about that. The drinking water levels of radioactive iodine in MA DID exceed the EPA limits. However, the EPA limits are calculated for a level that is suitable over the lifespan of a human (in 1974 I might add...making this calculation almost as old as the Fukushima reactors themselves), not a temporary exposure . The EPA stressed that in no way would this have any health effects.

Comment Re:"May be" "Possibly" "Calm down" "Sleep" (Score 1) 280

Actually you don't have to ingest it, BUT you have to be pretty much right next to it to receive the full dose. "Measurements showed the air above the radioactive water in the pit contained more than 1,000 millisieverts per hour of radioactivity. Even just two feet (60 centimeters) away, that figure dropped to 400 millisieverts." http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110402/ap_on_bi_ge/as_japan_earthquake_587

Comment Re:This is absurd (Score 1) 500

I'm having a lot of trouble understanding what you are trying to say. Are you suggesting that if the explosions didn't take place that everything would be fine at Fukushima? The reactors would still be overheating, explosion or not explosion. Thus, Japan would still have a nuclear crisis. "International"? In what way is this an international nuclear crisis? I could see the argument that this is an international economic crisis because of the lost output of Japan for companies abroad and the contaminated food not being sold to international markets etc, but the nuclear effects are limited to around 30 - 40 km outside the plant (I live about 200 km southwest of the plant and if it weren't for the news I would never know that anything was wrong). Yes I am aware that they found minute amounts in 15 states of America, but until they are enough to cause any kind of effect at all, I don't think this can be considered a catastrophe for any country besides Japan.

There was not a steady stream of hydrogen coming out of the reactor, so by your own example when the stream from the reactor stopped being vented, wouldn't the flame have been sucked back in like the can with the hose disconnected? Yes, the hydrogen came from the overheated zirconium oxidizing, and it was vented along with the steam inside the reactor (unknowingly at first) into the reactor building to relieve reactor pressure. It then subsequently was ignited by something unknown (to me at least). You say air must have been "pulled in"? It sounds like you think the explosion happened inside the reactor, which it didn't. There is already air in the reactor building. If I am misunderstanding what you said, then I apologize.

Comment Re:Radiation level beyond Chernobyl relocation lim (Score 1) 500

I saw that too, but the wording is a little vague. It says two things: highest values in a small are in the northwest, and IAEA operational criteria for evacuation exceeded in Iitate. That could possibly mean that the highest value was found in Iitate, but that is not necessarily the case.

Comment Re:This is absurd (Score 5, Informative) 500

Burn it off with a controlled burn? How do you suggest that they do that? Light a match next to where it is coming out? It's not like they had a lot of options for the hydrogen gas with no power whatsoever on site. Also I don't know what you mean by "build the reactors along the fault line" You do realize that the fault line is in the ocean right? Not directly under Fukushima. By that reasoning, Tokai and Onagawa should not have been built either. "far lower than the historic tsunami wave-heights" where did you get this information? I can't find any data on historic wave heights of Fukushima. Don't just say "Oh there was such and such a high wave in Hokkaido" either, because the geography of the sea floor and the coast makes a big difference. They had a wall ready for a 5.5 meter tsunami, which is still a huge wave. The earthquake sunk the Japanese coast by about 1 meter AND it was hit by a 14 meter tsunami. This is documented in NOVA's documentary on the subject: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/earth/japan-killer-quake.html . Salvage the reactors? They wrote off the reactors the minute they injected them with seawater. They have publicly said that reactors 1 - 4 will never run again. There is a good deal of information out there if you speak Japanese. Otherwise, you have to wait for someone to translate it which doesn't always happen. If you don't speak Japanese then you are in no position to comment on the amount of information that is or is not coming out.

Comment Re:Yeah right (Score 1) 323

I own a $600 graphics card (though I bought it in 2006) and I happen to do a lot with my computer besides playing games. I spend a lot of time playing them when a new one I like comes out, but I wouldn't even say the majority of my time overall is spent playing games. Youtube eats up much more of my time.....

Yes there are people who are like you say, and there are people who are casual gamers, but there are more types of people than just two.

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