Monday, April 18, 2011

Reactor radiation levels up from Friday, workers are not allowed to enter buildings that house reactors 1-3

NHK news reported the latest radiation readings via PackBot from reactor #1, whereby workers would receive a Tepco-accommodating 250 milliSievert/year maximum allowable dose in less than an hour if they made their way between the outer and inner doors of the reactor.  In part:
"At the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, high levels of radiation have kept workers from approaching the buildings housing the first 3 reactors, which lost their cooling functions in the March 11th earthquake and tsunami. The radiation level detected at the Number One reactor exceeds the national exposure limit of 250 millisieverts for nuclear contract workers."

"Radiation levels measured between the double doors of those reactor buildings was 270 millisieverts in the Number One reactor, 12 in Number 2, and 10 in Number 3. On Friday, the highest radiation level measured outside the double-entry doors of the Number 1 to 3 reactor buildings was 2 to 4 millisieverts per hour."
I'm a bit confused over the "outer doors" vs "between the double doors" official readings, and there are no "outside the double-entry door" readings for Monday (today) when readings were higher. The figures get more ambiguous and less reliable in their follow-up story, where they drop the "door" jargon (along with the exposure numbers)... presumably to de-emphasize the exposure levels:

"The operator of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says the maximum radiation level inside the No. 3 reactor building is 57 millisieverts per hour. It announced on Monday that radiation readings were 10 to 49 millisieverts per hour in the No.1 building, and 28 to 57millisieverts per hour in the No. 3 building."
It's obviously too dangerous to even enter the buildings for an appreciable amount of time, hence the sending of PackBots.  I'm sure these guys will find a location at a safe distance with lower dose rates to mill about and plan their next move.

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