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Date Posted: Wed, March 16 2011, 22:17:35
Author: Newell M. Swartz
Author Host/IP: cpe-76-166-237-73.socal.res.rr.com / 76.166.237.73
Subject: What Does Melt Down Mean?

I have heard all the experts discussing the "meltdown" of fuel rods in the Japanese reactors. I hate to appear so ignorant in front of so many people but I am tired of watching the news and all I hear the experts say, "meltdown in bad", "the fuel rods have partially melted", etc.

What they do not say is what actually happens when the fuel rods have totally melted down? Do they keep burning their way through the concrete and deeper into the earth? Most agree there will not be an atomic explosion.

So what actually happens when the rods are totally disolved. Are they like road flares which just consume themselves and end the chemical reaction. We know that area will be radioactive for years to come. We also know that some radiation will escape into the atmosphere. Worst case scenario, just dump cement/concrete on the whole thing until it is covered up like they did in Russia. But my initial question remains, what does the meltdown consist of and what are the consequences.

Reporters are prone to pick up on part of a scientist's comments but they totally lack comprehension or what the words mean. One prime example was that a reporter said pumping seawater into the reactors was a very bad thing because seawater is not pure. The next day, a Japanese scientist said that seawater was not a good choice for cooling the reactors because the corresiveness means the reactor can no longer be saved to use again. The reporter words just frightened more people into believeing that more contamination was being released because of the use of seawater which was not the case.

Newell

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