0
SPECIAL SECTION PAPERS

Precautions at Fukushima That Would Have Suppressed the Accident Severity

[+] Author and Article Information
Kenji Iino

SYDROSE LP,
475 N. 1st Street,
San Jose, CA 95112
e-mail: kiino@sydrose.com

Ritsuo Yoshioka

Japan Functional Safety Laboratory,
3-17-24, Hino-chuou, Konan-ku,
Yokohama 234-0053, Japan
e-mail: ritsuo.yoshioka@nifty.ne.jp

Masao Fuchigami

Adviser Komatsu Ltd.,
2-3-6 Akasaka, Minato-ku,
Tokyo 107-8414, Japan
e-mail: mfuchigam@yahoo.co.jp

Masayuki Nakao

Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
The University of Tokyo,
7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku,
Tokyo 113-0033, Japan
e-mail: nakao@hnl.t.u-tokyo.ac.jp

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received May 8, 2017; final manuscript received February 2, 2018; published online May 16, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Emmanuel Porcheron.

ASME J of Nuclear Rad Sci 4(3), 031007 (May 16, 2018) (14 pages) Paper No: NERS-17-1051; doi: 10.1115/1.4039343 History: Received May 08, 2017; Revised February 02, 2018

The Great East Japan Earthquake on Mar. 11, 2011 triggered huge tsunami waves that attacked Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (Fukushima-1). Units 1, 3, and 4 had hydrogen explosions. Units 1–3 had core meltdowns and released a large amount of radioactive material. Published investigation reports did not explain how the severity of the accident could have been prevented. We formed a study group to find: (A) Was the earthquake-induced huge tsunami predictable at Fukushima-1? (B) If it was predictable, what preparations at Fukushima-1 could have avoided the severity of the accident? Our conclusions were: (a) The tsunami that hit Fukushima-1 was predictable, and (b) the severity could have been avoided if the plant had prepared a set of equipment, and most of all, had exercised actions to take against such tsunami. Necessary preparation included: (1) a number of direct current (DC) batteries, (2) portable underwater pumps, (3) portable alternating current (AC) generators with sufficient gasoline supply, (4) high voltage AC power trucks, and (5) drills against extended loss of all electric power and seawater pumps. This set applied only to this specific accident. A thorough preparation would have added (6) portable compressors, (7) watertight modification to reactor core isolation cooling system (RCIC) and high pressure coolant injection system (HPCI) control and instrumentation, and (8) fire engines for alternate low pressure water injection. Item (5), i.e., to study plans and carry out exercises against the tsunami would have identified all other necessary preparations.

FIGURES IN THIS ARTICLE
<>
Copyright © 2018 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.

References

Imakiire, T. , 2011, “Crustal Movements Caused by the 2011 Off the Pacific Coast of Tohoku Earthquake,” Geospatial Information Authority of Japan, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Tohoku Electric Power Company, 2011, “Outline of Onagawa NPP and Response to the Great East Japan Earthquake,” Tohoku Electric Power Company, Sendai, Japan (in Japanese).
Asahi Digital, 2012, “Visit to the Damaged Tokai-2 NPP, NISA Verified Turbine Damage,” Asahi Digital, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
AESJ, 2014, “Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident—Its Whole Picture and Proposal for Tomorrow,” Atomic Energy Society of Japan Investigation Committee, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Investigation Committee, 2011, “Investigation Committee on the Accident at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Station of Tokyo Electric Power Company,” Cabinet Secretariat of the Government of Japan, Tokyo, Japan, Interim Report.
Investigation Committee, 2012, “Investigation Committee on the Accident at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Station of Tokyo Electric Power Company,” Cabinet Secretariat of the Government of Japan, Tokyo, Japan, Final Report.
The National Diet of Japan, 2012, “The Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission,” The National Diet of Japan, Tokyo, Japan, accessed Feb. 15, 2017, https://www.nirs.org/wp-content/uploads/fukushima/naiic_report.pdf
TEPCO, 2012, “Fukushima Nuclear Accident Investigation Report,” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Ohmae, K. , 2012, “The ‘Final Conditions’ for Restarting Nuclear Power Plants: Final Report of the ‘Fukushima Daiichi’ Accident Investigation Project,” Shogakukan, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
IAEA, 2015, “The Fukushima Daiichi Accident,” International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Austria, Report by the Director General, Report No. STI/PUB/1710, IAEAL 15-00988.
Hatamura, Y. , Abe, S. , Fuchigami, M. , and Kasahara, N. , 2015, The 2011 Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Accident, Woodhead, Cambridge, UK.
Hatamura, Y. , 2002, Learning From Failure, SYDROSE LP, San Jose, CA.
Furukawa, M. , 2014, “The 3.11 Severe Nuclear Accident and Criminal Liability of TEPCO and Others,” Asahi Judiciary, The Asahi Shimbun Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
HERP, 2002, “About the Long-Term Evaluation of Seismic Activities Along Offshore of Sanriku to Boso,” HERP, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
TEPCO, 2011, “Tsunami Evaluation at Fukushima-1 and -2 NPP,” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Soeda, T. , 2014, The People Who Buried the Warnings Against Nuclear Power and Great Tsunami, Iwanami, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Satake, K. , Namegaya, Y. , and Yamamoto, S. , 2008, “Numerical Simulation of the AD 869 Jyogan Tsunami in Ishinomaki and Sendai Plains,” Annual Report of Active Fault and Paleoearthquake Researches, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Tokyo, Japan, Report No. 8 (in Japanese).
Seven Ministries and Agencies of the Government of Japan, 1998, “Guideline for Enhancing Tsunami Preparation in Local Disaster Management Plans,” National Land Agency (Later Consolidated Into METI), Agricultural Management and Structure Improvement Bureau of Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), Fisheries Agency of MAFF, Ministry of Transport (Later Consolidated Into METI), Japan Meteorological Agency, Ministry of Construction (Later Consolidated Into METI), and Fire and Disaster Management Agency, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
TEPCO, 2012, “Discussions by Study Group on External Overflow,” Records of Jan. to Jul., 2006 Study Led by NISA and JNES, Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
JNES, 2009, “Improving Probabilistic Safety Evaluation Methods in Relation to Earthquakes,” Japan Nuclear Energy Safety Organization, Tokyo, Japan, Report No. JNES/SAE09-022.
NLA, 1999, “Hazard Maps of Tsunami Inundation,” NLA, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Okayama, K. , and Nakatsuji, T. , 1999, “Development and Practical Use of Hazard Maps of Tsunami Inundation,” Annual Meeting of Institute of Social Safety Science, Tokyo, Japan, pp. 50–51.
Minoura, K. , and Nakaya, S. , 1991, “Traces of Tsunami Preserved in Inter-Tidal Lacustrine and Marsh Deposits: Some Examples From Northeast Japan,” J. Geol., 99(2), pp. 265–287. [CrossRef]
Abe, H. , Yoshisada, S. , and Chigami, A. , 1990, “Estimation of the Height of the Sanriku Jogan 11 Earthquake-Tsunami (AD 869) in the Sendai Plain,” Zisin J. Seismol. Soc. Jpn., 43(4), pp. 513–525 (in Japanese).
Sugawara, D. , Minoura, K. , and Imamura, F. , 2001, “Deposition From the 869 Jyogan Tsunami Estimations of Its Size,” Research on Tsunami Engineering, Vol. 18, International Research Institute of Disaster Science, Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan, pp. 1–10 (in Japanese).
HERP, 2008, “2008 Intense Research and Observations of Miyagi Offshore Earthquake,” HERP, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Watanabe, H. , 2001, “Is It Possible to Clarify the Real State of Past Earthquakes and Tsunamis on the Basis of Legends?—As an Example of the 869 Jogan Earthquake and Tsunami,” Hist. Earthquakes, 17, pp. 130–146 (in Japanese).
TEPCO, 1967, “TEPCO Promotional Movie “Dawn of Fukushima NPP—Planning Stage,” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
Kobayashi, K. , 1971, “An Investigation on Planning Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant,” J. Civ. Eng., 12(7), pp. 118–128 (in Japanese).
IAEA, 1979, “Safety Guides. Earthquakes and Associated Topics in Relation to Nuclear Power Plant Siting,” International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Austria, IAEA Safety Series No. 50-SG-S. https://inis.iaea.org/search/search.aspx?orig_q=RN:22072415
Tang, L. , Chamberlin, C. , Tolkova, E. , Spillane, M. , Titov, V. V. , Bernard, E. N. , and Mofjeld, H. O. , 2006, “Assessment of Potential Tsunami Impact for Pearl Harbor, Hawaii,” National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Washington, DC, NOAA Technical Memorandum No. OAR PMEL-131. https://nctr.pmel.noaa.gov/Pdf/tang2984_low_res.pdf
Sawaji, O. , 2012, “Education and Disaster Reduction,” Jpn. J., pp. 6–10.
Atomic Energy Society of Japan, 1989, “Nuclear Reactor Decay Heat and Its Recommended Values,” Atomic Energy Society of Japan, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
TEPCO, 2011, “Evaluating the Fukushima-1, Unit-1 IC Operation,” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
TEPCO, 2017, “Outline of Fukushima-1 Facilities,” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
USNRC Technical Training Center, 2017, “Boiling Water Reactor (BWR) Systems, in Reactor Concepts Manual,” Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC, accessed Feb. 5, 2017, https://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/basic-ref/students/for-educators/03.pdf
Next-Generation Fuel Research Special Committee, 1998, “Plutonium Engineering,” Atomic Energy Society of Japan, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
METI, 2012, “Summary and Discussions on Progress of Events With Units 1 to 3, Addendum 2 to Press Release, Technical Aspects of TEPCO Fukushima-1 Accident,” METI, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
TEPCO, 2013, “Could We Have Prevented the Unit-1 Hydrogen Explosion at 24 Hours (Operating the IC),” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
NRC, 2012, “Comparison of Containment Volumes and Design Pressures, From BWR Mark I and Mark II Containment Regulatory History,” Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC, accessed Feb. 15, 2017, http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1232/ML12326A344.pdf
TEPCO, 2012, “The Great East Japan Earthquake Effects to NPP and Current Status,” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).
TEPCO, 2011, “Fukushima Nuclear Accident Investigation Interim Report,” Tokyo Electric Power Company, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).

Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Tsunami inundation depth estimates at Fukushima-1 by NLA

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Communities with legends about Jyogan Tsunami [27]

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Ground levels of Fukushima-1 units

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Elevations that water reach with tsunami

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Eight regions of seismic activity evaluation by HERP in 2002 [14]

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

The Great East Japan Earthquake epicenter and locations of nuclear power plants nearit

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

Mechanical components inside RPV above fuel

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 10

Unit-1 water level drop after shutdown

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 11

Unit-1 emergency procedure after SBO

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 15

Units 2 and 3 SC temperature after shutdown with RCIC running

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 16

Residual heat removal system [41]

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 17

Two-stage emergency procedures for units 1–3

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

Unit-1 in isolation

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

Units 2 and 3 in isolation

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 14

Unit-1 water level after shutdown and loss of IC at 8 h after SBO

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 12

Unit 2 and 3 water level drop after shutdown

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 13

Units 2 and 3 emergency procedure after SBO

Tables

Errata

Discussions

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In