Fukushima Radiation and Fallout Projections

6 - 12 November 2011


Illustration used in The Non-Battle of Fukushima by Steve from Virginia,, posted November 7, 2011 "Figure 1: A generalized conception of what is taking place beneath the Fukushima reactors, cores at very high temperatures burning their way into the ground."


"Figure 4: After melting through the bottoms of the reactor buildings the cores would consolidate into amorphous 150 ton blobs of metallic uranium, thorium and plutonium isotopes."


Third in a series of illustrations used in The Non-Battle of Fukushima by Steve from Virginia,, posted November 7, 2011 "Figure 5: Super-criticality is an issue of time: as nuclei split energetically, the tendency is for the atoms to fly away from each other. The material separates and the reactions cease. The problem emerges when there is no place for the atoms to go. Chain reactions can then propagate for generation after generation with an accompanying energy buildup until the bonds of mass and inertia represented by the ground … are overcome. "

Fukushima Radioactive Ocean Impact Map - 11.11.11 update (see caption in Japan section below)

North America




2011-11-06 Fukushima Diary: Strontium Leakage Worsening at Fukushima,
2011-11-07 The Non-Battle of Fukushima …by Steve from Virginia,, posted November 7, 2011 [Editor's Note: From my layperson's perspective, this looks like an excellent analysis of the situation and prospects for an explosion as corium sinks deeper into the earth].
...Large problems are looming larger in Fukushima as reports of short-lived radioactive fission products detected by TEPCO in reactor number 2:
– There have been far too many self-serving assumptions made by operator about the conditions within the four reactors. The assumption is the cores are all sub-critical as designed and installed by the utility. The detection of short-lived fission daughters indicates the assumptions are wrong and that core(s) are critical.
– If the cores material is spread out over a wide area or inside the reactor buildings the cores would likely be sub-critical and unable to produce fission products.
– That fission products are being detected indicates the core beneath reactor 2 is in a concentrated mass. What matters is whether the cores can or will become super-critical causing an explosion.
– Cold shutdown is an abstract (advertising) concept unrelated to conditions in the destroyed reactors at Fukushima.
– This is typical of the ‘modern’ approach that insists that problems of physics are subject to public relations.
– Unlike the Soviets at Chernobyl shortly after the explosions and meltdown, the Japanese have not bothered to send nuclear scientists into the reactors to determine the condition and location of the three reactor cores. Consequently, nobody knows anything about the cores...
... – This is the issue now, is it possible for events to bring the fuel cores to supercriticality.
As nuclear material fissions, a product is Xenon-135. This isotope is a powerful neutron poison. As the fuel material fissions, the resulting Xe-135 absorbs neutrons stifling the chain reaction until the Xenon ‘burns off’ by absorption of neutrons at which time the fission intensifies creating more Xenon. Because the fuel mass is borderline critical, Xenon-135 creation occurs at the same rate as the fission process to keep the reactions from becoming destructively super-critical.
Being near the ocean, the ground under the reactors is mostly silica sand. As the sand melts the core sinks through it. Above and surrounding the core material is a glassy substance that also includes the non-fissile material that once made up the core structures: the boron-carbide control blades, zirconium fuel cladding, stainless steel fuel racks, flow nozzles, steam dryers, rod drives along with concrete. This material forms a slag. The fuel doesn’t ‘burn away’ the soil in its path but simply sinks through it leaving behind a ‘plug’ made up of slag and the other debris.
This plug prevents water from reaching the core material to cool it. Any cooling at the heated core creates more layers of slag.
The plug, slag and other debris are intensely radioactive, being either the remains of the core or having come in contact with it.
Water poured into the reactors soaks into the ground. The rest fills the reactor buildings from where it eventually flows into the ocean.
While the sand absorbs neutrons and is a poor reflector, the bedrock some meters beneath the reactors is likely to be a good one. Any hard, dense material can be a good reflector (as is water). What the reflector does is bounce neutrons back into the fissile material to increase the neutron flux while moderating the neutrons at the same time. In this way, fissile U-235 atoms can also absorb neutrons and split.
More fission would amplify the flux increasing the energy release while compressing the fuel. The weight of the fuel along with the plug of slag would push fissile material onto the reflector causing a prompt criticality:
– There have been numerous criticality incidents since the beginning of the nuclear era and many share the characteristics of fuel configured inadvertently or the presence of neutron reflectors.
– A low energy reaction would cause a fuel geyser that would blow core material and the plug through the roof of the reactor building, much like the explosion in reactor 3. This would require only a few generations of chain reactions in the super-critical core.
– A high energy reaction of many generations would cause a substantial nuclear explosion. Critical components would be: material of sufficient mass, this material confined by incompressible material (sandy soil), weight of the core and the plug above it pressing the core against the neutron reflector. More than fifty generations of chain reactions would cause a multi-kiloton explosion beneath the reactor.
– A powerful explosion would propagate a shock wave that would travel through the ground and compress other cores that might have burnt their way into the ground. This compression would cause even more powerful nuclear explosions. This was how a modest amount of fuel under Chernobyl would cause a shock wave capable of bringing the rest of the nuclear material into a super-critical state.
2011-11-08 Tokyo Starts Burning Radioactive Waste from Other Areas … Tokyo Governor Tells Residents to “Shut Up” and Stop Complaining About It,
I noted in August:

Nuclear expert Arnie Gundersen says in a new interview that the Japanese are burning radioactive materials. The radioactivity originated from Fukushima, but various prefectures are burning radioactive materials in their terroritories.
Gundersen says that this radioactivity ends up not only in neighboring prefectures, but in Hawaii, British Columbia, Oregon, Washington and California.

And see this and this.*
Now Tokyo is starting to burn radioactive debris from other prefectures.
Ex-SKF (the odd name comes from the fact that the writer is a former trader in the ProShares UltraShort Financials ETF known as “SKF”) pointed out last week:

NHK reports that the first container from Miyako City in Iwate Prefecture arrived by rail in JR Tokyo container terminal in Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo at 7AM on November 3. It was promptly transported to one of the contractors selected by the Metropolitan government, and the debris was sorted, and crushed into smaller pieces. Flammable debris will go to the TEPCO’s subsidiary (Tokyo Rinkai Recycle Power) located on the landfill and be burned after November 6, and non-flammable debris will be simply buried in the same landfill.

Given that Tokyo is directly getting hit by radiation from Fukushima, and that Fukushima is still far from any stable shutdown – and is still apparently undergoing nuclear reactions (and see this, this and this) – burning radioactive debris just adds insult to injury.
Ex-SKF subsequently reported (edited to delete Japanese language references):

Shintaro Ishihara, irascible 79-year-old governor of Tokyo who almost single-handedly decided to do this mind-boggling project to “assist the recovery” of Iwate, mentioned the complaints that his government has received over the issue in the press conference on November 4 afternoon.
According to Fuji TV news clip on November 4, the governor said,

“Shut up” is all we need to say to these complaints.


Fuji TV news also says that 3,000 complaints have been sent to the Tokyo Metropolitan government, over 90% of them protesting against the debris from disaster-affected areas to be transported, processed, crushed and burned and buried in Tokyo Bay.

And today, Ex-SKF reports that the Tokyo governor’s attitude towards his citizens has filtered down to the Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of Environment as well:



“It is a fate for children to accept radiation contamination.”



Ms. Iwanaga of Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of Environment was also bad. [She said] “Radioactive materials would disperse [by burning the debris] but it would be safe; there was no problem at all because it had been agreed and approved in the Metropolitan Assembly which represents the residents of Tokyo; there was no system whereby the residents have a direct say in the matter.” To top it off, she hung up on me.

Remember, Japan is a very homogenous society where peer pressure to conform can be intense. For example, last month it was reported that mothers who expressed concern about their kids playing outside in potentially radioactive conditions are called “monster parents” by their peers.
* Note: To understand the second link, you have to know that nuclear plants have the most sensitive ongoing testing equipment; indeed, because of the Russian cover-up, the Chernobyl accident was first “discovered” when a nuclear plant in another country detected high high ambient radiation levels.
2011-11-08 US Department of Energy Detected Airborne Neptunium -239 During the May 8th Fukushima "Fire" by POTRBLOG Team.
On May 8th 2011 the United States Department of Energy detected airborne Neptunium -239 in the wake of what was wildly reported on the blogosphere as a "Fire" at Fukushima. The Neptunium 239 was detected approximately 40 miles west-south-west of Fukushima at a rest area on the Tohoku Expy near Niita...
2011-11-08 TEPCO LIES,
2011-11-09 (for this date, extending to 2011-11-11) Iodine-131 detected in Tokyo at multiple locations during November — 350 bq/kg at Kita garbage facility, by ENENEWS Admin, December 12, 2011
Breaking news ; Possibility of recriticality again, Fukushima Diary, Dec. 11, 2011:

* Radioactive Iodine was measured in Gunma and Tokyo again
* Officials announce the reason is unknown
* Measured from incineration ash of garbage disposal facilities in Tokyo


* I-131 @ 350 Bq/kg, Kita garbage disposal facility (Nov. 9)
* I-131 @ 28 Bq/kg, Suginami garbage disposal facilities (Nov. 7)
* I-131 @ 15 Bq/kg, Shin koto garbage disposal facilities (Nov. 11)

More information about iodine-131 in Gunma: Radioactive iodine found in Gunma at 3 sewage plants
2011-11-09 Commission releases report on scrapping N-plant, [h/t "Scrapping Fukushima"].
"Japan's Atomic Energy Commission has compiled a report saying it will take more than 30 years to scrap the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
The commission's panel of experts had been discussing the schedule since August.
The report released on Wednesday says transferring spent fuel from the plant's 4 damaged reactor buildings to a pool inside the compound will begin within 3 years after the reactors achieve cold shutdown.
Removing the melted fuel inside the No.1 through No.3 reactors will begin within 10 years. The reactors' containment vessels must first be repaired and filled them with water to block radiation.
The schedule is based on the handling of the nuclear accident at Three Mile Island in 1979. But the situation at Fukushima Daiichi is far more serious because 3 reactors suffered simultaneous meltdowns.
It could take more than 30 years to extract the nuclear fuel, dismantle the reactors, and turn the compound into a vacant lot."
2011-11-09 “Burning Radioactive Debris Will Only Serve To Further Randomly Spread Radiation Across Japan, As Well As The Rest Of The World”,
Japanese Children Are Already Suffering Tremendously From Fukushima Radiation
I noted earlier today that Tokyo – and other parts of Japan – are burning radioactive debris, which will disperse more radiation into the environment.
Steven Starr – Senior Scientist, Physicians for Social Responsibility, and Director of the Clinical Laboratory Science Program at the University of Missouri-Columbia, who has advised numerous countries on issues of nuclear non-proliferation – wrote a comment to the post agreeing:

Burning radioactive debris will only serve to further randomly spread radiation across Japan, as well as the rest of the world. Not only will this lead to more morbidity and mortality within Japan, but it will further complicate epidemiological studies of the Fukushima disaster. Raising “acceptable” levels of radioactive fallout is a false solution to a serious problem. It is possible for the government authorities to do this because radiation is invisible to us, and at lower doses, the consequences of exposure do not manifest themselves for some time . . . thus it is a poison that is easy to hide and ignore. Sadly, the children of Japan will be those most seriously affected by this man-made environmental catastrophe.

All independent nuclear health experts would agree with Starr.
And Japanese children are already suffering tremendously from Fukushima radiation
2011-11-11 Fukushima Radioactive Ocean Impact Map - 11.11.11 update (animation video)"The dispersal model is ASR's Pol3DD. The model is forced by hydrodynamic data from the HYCOM/NCODA system which provides on a weekly basis, daily oceanic current in the world ocean. The resolution in this part of the Pacific Ocean is around 8km x 8km cells. We are treating only the sea surface currents. Particles in the model are continuously released near the Fukushima Daiichi power plant since March 11th. The dispersal model keeps a trace of their visits in the model cells. The results here are expressed in number of visit per surface area of material which has been in contact at least once with the highly concentrated radioactive water."
2011-11-11 Nuclear Chain Reactions and Forms of Criticality,
2011-11-12 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, A photo tour.


North America

2011-11-06 Radioactive Los Angeles Rain 11-6-11 evening, by Michael Collins,
This stunning detection suggests radon progeny generated by continuing fissile re-criticality at the three melted down and out Fukushima nuclear reactors and perhaps additional radiation caused by the Japanese government’s decision to burn over 550,000 tons of radioactive waste in October, much of which will end up as fallout.
2011-11-06 Radioactive Los Angeles Rain 11-6-11 morning by Michael Collins,
"11:25 am 10-minute INTERIOR SAME SANTA MONICA RAIN collected two hours after falling: 80.5 CPM^ or 83.8% HIGHER THAN SUBSEQUENT BACKGROUND! This is a just a taste if what’s coming on the Jet Stream in the Fukushima Express."
2011-11-08 [pertaining to this rain date in St. Louis] ALERT- Persistent Long Half Life Radioactive Fallout Detected in 11/8/11 Saint Louis, Mo Rainfall, dated 26 Nov 2011
"A twelve day Geiger counter reading was taken of the radioactive fallout which rained down on Saint Louis Missouri during the 11/8/11 rain event. The sample shows evidence of persistent long half life radiation which is capable of accumulating in the environment. This is not the first such detection we have encountered, but it is the longest continuous sample reading we have taken to date. The charts below show the evidence of the event; the raw data the charts were generate from will be made available for download shortly.
The detection reemphasizes the need to take cost effective risk mitigation measures; the primary measures we are taking are to avoid tracking the fallout into the house (wet clothes, wet cars in the garage), and protecting water and food intake.
Based on some good critiques via blog comments, we are in the process of revamping our rapid analysis methodology to reflect an increased level of uncertainty in identifying fallout with a less than one day half life. The increased uncertainty is not yet at a level to reduce or increase our risk mitigation strategies; but its influence is noticeable in the charts below. A video describing the detections below in greater detail will follow."
2011-11-08 20X Background Radiation in 9:45pm 11/8/11 Saint Louis, Mo Fallout Rain, by POTRBLOG Team.
"After several hours of on and off all day rain and storms, we finally were able to get a reading from a swipe off the truck; the sample read 20 times greater than background radiation.
Since Fukushima corium hit ground water back in August, it seems as if we no longer get any rainfalls with less than 20x background radiation in them."
2011-11-11 (for interview on this date) Radiation Expert: “North America has received quite a large fallout” –Incredible increase in cancer, not just for Japan but northern hemisphere (VIDEO) by Enenews, Published: December 13th, 2011 at 05:01 AM EDT
Helen Caldicott Interview, The Big Picture with Thom Hartmann, Dec. 11, 2011:
NYT: Helen Caldicott, a pediatrician, is founding president of Physicians for Social Responsibility. A native of Australia, she left her Harvard Medical School post in 1980 to work full-time on anti-nuclear education.
Transcript Excerpts:

At 2:39 in

May I say that North America has received quite a large fallout itself.

At 3:15 in

We’re going to see an incredible increase in cancer, leukemia, and — down the time track — genetic disease. Not just in Japan but in the Northern Hemisphere, particularly North America.

At 5:00 in

There have been three actual melt-throughs [...]
There could be massive hydrogen explosions still or steam explosions [...]
Building 4 is very unstable and its got a very hot cooling pool on top of it. If there’s another earthquake that building could collapse and who knows how much radiation could escape
h/t Anonymous tip, ettienneable1

2011-11-11 Japanese Debris to Start Hitting Western U.S. and Canada THIS WEEK,
2011-11-12 Phoenix Beta Counts Up to 400 CPM Nov 11 and 12,
30 to 60 is normal. The EPA considers 4X background dangerous for emergency responders.
I have noticed a consistent and direct correlation between my asthma problems and our beta count here in Phoenix.
I have no way of knowing if the relationship is simply correlative or is causal, but there most definitely is a strong correlation.
The high radiation levels we are experiencing in Phoenix are from Fukushima, brought in on the jet stream



2011-11-11 Elevated radiation also in Germany, Sweden, Slovakia — UK expert claims iodine very unlikely from Fukushima since it was “so many months ago” by Energy News Staff
"Low levels of radioactive particles in Europe: IAEA, Reuters, Nov. 11, 2011:
“Germany’s Environment Ministry said slightly higher levels of radioactive iodine had been measured in the north of the country” [...]
“Slovakia [... and] Sweden also reported traces [in addition to Austria, Czech Republic, and Hungary]”
Professor Malcolm Sperrin, director of medical physics at Britain’s Royal Berkshire Hospital,

  • Sperrin “said any link with Fukushima was extremely unlikely”
  • “It is far more likely that the iodine may be as a result of excretion by patients undergoing medical treatment. Whilst such patients are carefully controlled, some release of iodine into the environment may be inevitable…”

Czech State Office for Nuclear Safety chief Dana Drabova:

  • “It was detected by our radiation monitoring network, with probability bordering on certainty the source is abroad. It is iodine-131 and we have asked the IAEA if they know what the source could be.”

Paddy Regan, a professor of nuclear physics at Britain’s University of Surrey:

  • Regan says the suggestion that the iodine may have leaked from a radiopharmaceuticals maker “sounds very sensible and totally reasonable.”
  • “It would be very unlikely for it to have come from Fukushima since the accident was so many months ago and iodine-131 has a brief half-life.”

2011-11-11 Hungarian gov’t radiation expert: Iodine-131 detected in Budapest, but it’s OK because “this is far below the levels found after Fukushima” by ENENEWS Staff
Nov. 11 — Dr Geza Safrany of Hungary’s National Research Institute for Radiobiology and Radiohygiene told Reuters:

  • “A very minimal increase in activity was registered (in Hungary) on Nov. 5 … but this is far below the levels found after Fukushima”
  • “For the time being the source of the leakage cannot be determined”
  • Detections were made at monitoring stations in Budapest and the eastern town of Miskolc
  • He said it was unlikely Hungary would be the source of the leakage as it was detected in several places in Europe

2011-11-11 Iodine-131 now detected in Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary… other countries — An indicator of nuclear chain reaction — 10 days after criticality talk at Fukushima by ENENEWS,
Traces of iodine-131 detected in Europe, Trend, November 11, 2011:
“Low levels of a radioactive isotope have been detected in several European countries in the past days, but the source of the emission was unknown, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said Friday, DPA reported.” [...]
‘”But it’s a concern because there is a source somewhere,” an offical close to the IAEA said, adding that atmospheric measurements were made in countries including Austria, the Czech Republic and Hungary.” [...]
“People who take a transatlantic flight are exposed to a radiation dose 40,000 times as high as the one detected recently, the Vienna health ministry said.”
From the International Atomic Energy Agency’s brief statement on the detection:

  • “The IAEA has learned about similar measurements in other locations across Europe”
  • “The IAEA believes the current trace levels of iodine-131 that have been measured do not pose a public health risk and are not caused by the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident in Japan”
  • “The IAEA is working with its counterparts to determine the cause and origin of the iodine-131.”

The iodine-131 finding comes around 10 days after the announcement of xenon at Fukushima, which was suspected to be caused by a criticality.
How long did it take for radioactive particles from Japan to reach Europe back in March?
“The substances were blown eastward by a jet stream traveling at a speed of some 3,000 kilometres a day, arriving on the US West Coast on March 18, in Iceland on March 20, and many other European countries on March 22, the researchers said.” -DPA
Because radioactive releases after the March 11 quake occurred almost immediately, the radioactive isotopes from Japan took about 10-11 days to reach Europe.
UPDATE via BBC at 9:25am ET (h/t Bobby1):
“The Czech nuclear security authority said it had been detecting radioactive iodine-131 at a number of monitoring stations since late October and had informed the IAEA to see if it could identify the source, Reuters reports.”
“Czech nuclear safety chief Dana Drabova said the iodine could have leaked during production of radiopharmaceuticals.”
“It was certainly not from a nuclear power plant, she said, adding that they were almost certain that the source was abroad.”
UPDATE II: Hungarian gov't radiation expert: Iodine-131 detected in Budapest, but it's OK because "this is far below the levels found after Fukushima"

2011-11-12 Radiation Levels Up in Europe, Depleted Uranium & More: Infowars Nightly News (14:24),
2011-11-12 AP: Anonymous IAEA official says iodine-131 release appears to be continuing across Europe by ENENEWS Staff
2011-11-12 EUROPEAN Radioactive IODINE Spallation PREDICTED by POTRBLOG
European radioactive iodine detections were predicted by POTRBLOG team as a consequence of the interaction of Coronal Mass Ejections with Fukushima Fallout (both radioactive and non-radioactive)
, by POTRBLOG Team.
2011-11-12 Now Poland and Denmark report “radioactive dust” — IAEA official: “?We are a little concerned” by ENENEWS Staff
Radioactive dust over Sweden, Stockholm News, November 12, 2011:

* ”The countries affected are Denmark, Sweden, Czech Republic, Poland, Austria, and Hungary”
* “The problem is that no one knows where the radioactive dust comes from”
* IAEA official: “We are a little concerned, because there must be a source somewhere”

There are more countries affected than reported in this article. Here is the complete list to date:

1. Germany
2. Sweden
3. Austria
4. Hungary
5. Czech Republic
6. Slovakia
7. Poland
8. Denmark

Forward to 13 Nov - 19 Nov
Back to 30 Oct - 05 Nov
Return To Contents


Short URL for this web page:


The Cowpens Flag, one of many circular star patterns used by "American Whigs" (or "Patriots")