Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Details On Japan Nuclear Accident

Date:
December 6, 1999
Source:
American Institute Of Physics
Summary:
In September, a nuclear accident in Japan made international headlines, as workers at a fuel processing plant in the village of Tokai (also known as Tokaimura) inadvertently started a nuclear chain reaction when adding enriched uranium to a tank at the plant. While it will be some time before the official report on the incident is available, Physics Today magazine reveals some newly uncovered details on the Tokai accident in the December issue.

In September, a nuclear accident in Japan made international headlines, as workers at a fuel processing plant in the village of Tokai (also known as Tokaimura) inadvertently started a nuclear chain reaction when adding enriched uranium to a tank at the plant.

While it will be some time before the official report on the incident is available, Physics Today magazine reveals some newly uncovered details on the Tokai accident in the December issue.

The Physics Today account provides new information on why the workers added about 7 times as much uranium to a given container as was allowed. The article identifies three errors that were made, the first by the plant's operating company in modifying the government-approved procedure without authorization, the second and third by the workers themselves, possibly with concurrence of their immediate management.

Most accounts have provided the impression that the workers were adding fuel to a tank they were supposed to use but that they were doing so with buckets rather than through pipes or funnels. But as the Physics Today article reveals, they were actually using a container not intended for the purpose. Its shape was not right and it had a water jacket around it for cooling. Both the shape of the tank and the presence of the water jacket (which reflected neutrons back into the tank) contributed to the onset of a nuclear chain reaction.

The Physics Today report includes several estimates by nuclear experts on the magnitude of the accident, based on different methods. These estimates help put the Tokai accident into perspective vis a vis other nuclear accidents.

The Physics Today article is freely available online http://www.aip.org/pt/toka2.htm


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Institute Of Physics. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Institute Of Physics. "New Details On Japan Nuclear Accident." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 December 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/12/991206072234.htm>.
American Institute Of Physics. (1999, December 6). New Details On Japan Nuclear Accident. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/12/991206072234.htm
American Institute Of Physics. "New Details On Japan Nuclear Accident." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/12/991206072234.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) More and more studies are showing positive benefits to playing video games, but the jury is still out on brain training programs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 29, 2014) CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, celebrates 60 years of bringing nations together through science. As Joanna Partridge reports from inside the famous science centre it's also planning to turn the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator back on after an upgrade. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
This 'Invisibility Cloak' Is Simpler Than Most

This 'Invisibility Cloak' Is Simpler Than Most

Newsy (Sep. 28, 2014) Researchers from the University of Rochester have created a type of invisibility cloak with simple focal lenses. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Corvette Can Secretly Record Convos And Get You Arrested

New Corvette Can Secretly Record Convos And Get You Arrested

Newsy (Sep. 28, 2014) The 2015 Corvette features valet mode – which allows the owner to secretly record audio and video – but in many states that practice is illegal. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins