volcano vs the nuclear power plant


There may be an ongoing battle between the Sakurajima volcano and 50-km-away Sendai nuclear energy plant in Kyushu, southwestern Japan. Whereas the operator of the energy plant goals to restart its idle nuclear reactors, a new strong eruption brings our consideration again to problem of how protected our nuclear energy crops are from the hazards posed by volcanoes. 

Japan’s new security requirements set by Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) ​in 2013 now require electrical energy firms to contemplate potential influences from volcanoes positioned inside a radius of 160 kilometers from nuclear energy crops. Due to this, Sendai operators examined the consequences of eruptions from 39 volcanoes in what is named Japan’s first critical analysis of  the protection of nuclear energy crops from the standpoint of the hazard posed by volcanoes.

So far as the volcanic ash is taken into account, the analysis concluded that it’s enough to take measures based mostly on the idea that ash from Sakurajima volcano in Kagoshima Prefecture would accumulate within the compound of the Sendai nuclear energy plant to a peak of as much as 15 centimeters…

Nevertheless, as famous by Asahi Shimbun, “will these measures actually work given the likelihood that accumulation of volcanic ash to a peak of solely a number of millimeters will significantly impede staff and automobiles? If the consumption of water to chill nuclear reactors can be impeded, the reactors might be instantly plunged into harmful conditions.”

This picture was acquired on November 23, 2013.  Picture credit score: NASA / Earth Observatory – Landsat eight – OLI

It’s assumed that catastrophic eruptions in Japan happen about as soon as each 6 000 – 10 000 years however nobody can precisely say when or the place the following one will occur. However, it’s identified that after they do occur the pyroclastic flows can bury an space of over 100 kilometers from the volcano. 

Such huge eruptions can cowl the complete Japan and all surrounding international locations in thick volcanic ash and may such occasion happen whereas the plant is working, the management over the station would positively be misplaced.

“The key pyroclastic currents produced by Kumamoto Prefecture’s Mount Aso about 90 000 years in the past burned down the complete northern half of Kyushu and traveled throughout the ocean to what at the moment are Yamaguchi and Ehime prefectures. Pyroclastic flows attributable to Kagoshima Prefecture’s Mount Aira 26 000 to 29 000 years in the past utterly destroyed southern Kyushu. Such eruptions are significantly frequent in Kyushu and Hokkaido.” (Mainichi)

In earthquake vs the nuclear power plant scenario that happened in 2011, the earthquake positively received. Such sturdy quakes are thought-about to occur as soon as each 1 000 years however can science actually say that Japan (and the remainder of the world) is protected for the following 1 000 years?

Sakurajima erupts a number of hundred instances per 12 months.

Featured picture: Google 2014. Imagery by Terrametrics. Caption: The Watchers

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