OT: Nuclear Energy

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I think OUR byproducts are not the problem. The security systems are in place, etc. The sources of by-products from outside the US are the problems.
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wrote:

how do US nuclear plants affect that?
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Jim Yanik
jyanik
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Not sure the question. Actually after looking at (my) reply I am not sure about the answer either (g). Anyway, my point was supposed to be that the problem with by-products falling into "bad" hands is less of an issue at the US level because we have more ability to control our own stuff. To the extent that this is a problem, isn't one for US plants. Did that clear up the confusion? Or add to it? Actually the more disconcerting concern in this area is radioactive medical and industrial waste. Not all that well controlled even in the US. Dirty bombs are much more likely than real nukes since all you need is a bottle of medicine and a stick of dynamite. Get less damage but about the same terror bang for the buck.
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wrote:

At The Yankee Nuke Facility in Haddam Connecticut, they had a big problem with employees taking home unused construction materials that were CONTAMINATED. It all had to be tracked down and recovered at huge expense. The public paid that expense. Some of the materials have never been found and are presumed to be part of various private homes.
Hopefully when your kids buy one of those homes, the contaminated materials are not in the part of the home where your precious grandchildren sleep...
Then again, it may not be safe anywhere in the home.

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On Apr 30, 9:10 am, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

I'm having a hard time imagining how construction material from a plant being built would be contaminated with anything radioactive. The only part radioactive at all is the fuel rods which go in at the very end of the construction process. And those are steel rods with slightly enriched uranium inside, so there is nothing to cross contaminate anything. Until the plant is actually started up, the only way I could see any radioactive material leaving the site would be for a worker to actually take a fuel rod.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

The above story obviously has some major problems with it -- if there were such amounts of material as this suggests leaving the site contaminated, it would not be difficult to track the construction workers to their residences and detect same.
There have been some instances where sources from such items as NDT machines have been mishandled and either lost, stolen or simply carried off as souvenirs, but that is quite a different scenario than the one described.
I haven't bothered to try to track down what might have been the initial incident, if any, but I'm quite sure the story told here isn't much related to whatever happened, if anything.
It would be impossible to take a single fuel rod from a commercial reactor anyway--the individual fuel rods are bound into fuel assemblies that weigh in the ballpark of 1000-lb each and are some 12-ft long. Unirradiated U is an alpha emitter, anyway, so the cladding (which is typically a Zircaloy alloy, not steel; iron is a neutron "poison" so is avoided as much as possible for fuel components) will prevent virtually all from being a hazard anyway.
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Well, the story is true, and the materials taken were radioactive. This plant was in use for a LONG time, and over the years, I would think there were changes and modifications made in the normal course of maintaning the facility. Parts of reactors and cooling systems get rebuilt occasionally don't they?
They have never been able to account for all that is missing. Some of the materials taken by workers may have been given or sold to others. It may not be known exactly who even took the stuff, as no arrests were made that I am aware of. Might have even been temporary employees of a sub contractor who took the stuff to use on moonlighting jobs. I don't know. I do know that the material was discovered misiing and very little was recoverd after an investigation. It's still unaccounted for.
Oh, yeah... Their spent fuel inventory is not exactly problem free either. The company line is that it's a simple clerical error.
It gives me great comfort to know that a simple mistake by a bookeeper could mean control and security is really not that tight, or a high priority.
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote: ...

I can assure you it's a priority -- whether there was an error or not I can't say. I'm quite comfortable there's not a fuel bundle accounting anomaly the NRC hasn't required to be resolved fully.
As for the contaminated construction materials, again I'd have to look at the incident reports and so on to comment more fully.
It's highly unlikely there was anything more than low-level contamination at most I expect or the materials would have been in areas of the plant that would have required passing radiation monitors before exiting.
I'd read accounts if you have them...
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My knowlege of it is from local newspaper coverage from quite a few years ago. This isn't a recent story. It somehow never made national news. There was the initial front page reporting of the missing materials, and then just a couple of follow ups inside the papers reporting that only some of the materials were located and recovered.
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

I would suspect what it was may not have actually even been contaminated, necessarily. Construction aterial that has been used in a contaminated portion of the plant during an outage (scaffolding, construction material, etc., etc.) is removed to an area that is still within a confined area. If it is subsequently to be taken off-site, it will then be verified to be "clean" and released or (if valuable enough) decontaminated before moved to nonrestricted (radiological) areas. That it could have been transported offsite w/o setting off alarms and security indicates that it would have not been highly contaminated, if contaminated at all. So, I'd caution between making an assumption that the material was actually hazardous; only that it hadn't been officially declared not so.
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Think whatever you like.
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

I spent 30 years in generation; I _know_ procedures.
Can you provide any evidence that the above scenario (or a reasonable facsimile) is _not_ what happened? I'm happy to be informed of _facts_.
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote in wrote:

it appears that is exactly what you are doing. you made an opinion without having ANY data on this,solely based on irrational fears.
even with Love Canal and other toxic waste sites,there were indicators something was wrong.You don't have any of that.
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Jim Yanik
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If I'm going to base this on irrational fears, I'll first have to work very hard on developing some. Wishful thinking on your part.

I am relying on news as it was reported by multiple independent (and competing) sources. Similar to how you and I both know whatever we know about Love Canal.
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote: ...

Well, let's have some of them, then. I posted links to the wind generation statistics--I make every effort to not make this stuff up.
I don't doubt you're quoting as you recall what was written, but we don't have the luxury of having read those reports.
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It was quite some time ago, and predates the era where virtually all newspapers had an online presence. You can take or leave it as you wish. I'm sure it makes you feel better to be able to pretend it didn't happen because I can't produce the 20 year old (just a wild guess) newspapers.
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote: ...

I didn't say _something_ didn't happen and (as I noted) I know of particular ways in which similar things _have_ happened.
I was actively in the nuclear business at roughly that time frame and not all that far away geographically (VA) and interacting w/ the NRC regularly and do not recall an instance at Haddam making any significant news in the nuclear community. It certainly wasn't significant enough to have caused the NRC to issue any changes in general plant directives; that I would remember if it had affected our operations.
I am simply saying that without some way to verify what the actual facts of the incident you recall were, there's no way to know what really did happen. Consequently, in my mind it is simply an attempt to sow FUD.
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote in wrote:

20 years ago,certainly SOME evidence of problems should have appeared by now.
but it hasn't.still no data. just irrational imaginings.
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Jim Yanik
jyanik
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I agree that you are irrational, Jimbo.
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On May 1, 1:48 pm, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

They are online, as is any verifyable stuff and unverifyable crap, which is there forever, online to ruin you. If you Cant Find it, it never was there, or you dont know how to look, but how can that be with Google. Because it aint there.
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