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Thursday, April 14, 2011

So who is building the PANtron for Fukushima, and when will it be used?

So who is building the Percussion Actuated Neutronalizer (PANtron) for Fukushima?
Never heard of it you say? But, it sounds familiar?
Well,  there is good reason for that!

There are two main ways to interrupt a nuclear fission process.
(1) you break the fission chain by absorbing the neutrons which drive the process.
(2) you disperse the source into a sub-critical mass, which deprives the neutrons of their fission targets.

The methodologies employed at Fukushima to implement the above two process are working on the scale of hundreds of years.  It is the equivalent of hanging off of a cliff by one fingernail, with a randomly exploding boiling vat of razorblades waiting beneath you;  all the while hoping that your one finger nail will eventually grow long enough and strong enough to allow you to claw your way up that cliff face.

There is a more rapid solution possible; disperse the fuel rods via explosive force, and begin cleanup/removal operations. Of course that begs, how does one explosively disperse the fuel pellets without making the situation worse?

The solution is an explosively directed boron/water solution; hence my term "Percussion Actuated NEUTRONalizer". The term is a play on a similar term for a water cannon device used by EOD teams to "dismantle" bombs before they explode. There are many ways to implement the concept;  ranging from a precision tool, to a MOAB powered version, to a controlled demolition project with the PANtron as the grand finale.

Lets just hope that the eventually use of a PANtron is a planned event and not one born out of desperation grown out of a rapidly destabilizing situation. When 'they' starting talking about dropping a MOAB on Fukushima, the sound you will hear is the fat lady singing as she is dropping towards the target. If we're lucky, she wont be singing for us.

7 comments:

  1. Stupid curious question re "disperse the fuel rods": but I thought they were mostly melted into (a) corium mass/es by now - aren't they?

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  2. Yes, now they are mostly melted together. It would have been better had they acted earlier. It would be more difficult and require more force to do now, hence the MOAB.

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  3. Ms. X, that MOAB looks likely to blast radioactive dust all over the place, onto the plants, into the sea, into the air.

    It seems to me like one of those things they have in their interminably recycling "SuperKiddy Saves The World" rubbish tv cartoons. Can we only imagine violence as a solution>

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  4. While peace through superior fire power is a proven tactic, I'm not sure how anything in this post meets the definition of violence.

    Now if you believe Norm Abram of "This Old House" driving a nail with a hammer is an act of "violence" which can be overcome by a peaceful state of d├ętente between him and the nail, well there is not much that can be said about that.

    However, otherwise, your observation is correct. Moreover, to implement such a "SuperKiddy Saves The World" action would require people to realize that the long term incremental creation and uncontrolled manufacture of radioactive materials in Fukushima at some point is much more detrimental than a sudden dispersal and stopping of the on going criticality.

    So here is the question: How much Plutonium 239 are you willing to let the uncontrolled criticality at Fukushima create and disperse over the globe before you are willing to step forward and give "SuperKiddy" a hug?

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  5. Ms. X, how about the following? Is it fantasy or could it work?

    1) Drill deep enough under Fukushima site.
    2) Detonate underground nuke to create a large enough cavern.
    3) Detonate smaller bombs to break the ceiling so whole contaminated site falls deep underground.
    4) Fill hole with soil from elsewhere that was contaminated since March, then cover with rocks and concrete.

    Then dismantle all the other nuclear plants on the planet and send the radioactive material back underground where it belongs. Replace these with clean power plants such as http://www.kitegen.com/en/?page_id=7

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  6. The guys who drilled out the Chilean miners probably couldn't even pull off that slant drilling feat, which makes points 2-4 moot.

    Moreover, Governments will not dismantle nuclear power plants until such time that distribution of electricity can be authoritatively and precisely rationed at the INDIVIDUAL level via a centrally planned "smart-grid". And while that might sound good, it will put George Orewell's 1984 to shame.

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  7. I've been saying for months that the us should load b52s with boron mined out west and bury that area a couple of hundred feet deep and the hire bachtol or halliburron to build a circular wall a half mile out from the plant to stop flow to water and backfill that with boron also. For that matter everyone could donate their dead car batteries and throw them on top.

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