We've been thru this before -- the waste problem is solved if the
obstructionists such as you would simply allow it. Recycle--the fuel
portion (including the fissile transuranics) goes back in the reactor
and the waste is physically reduced drastically in size and dealt with.
Much of the rest of the world has been doing so for 40 years or so now.
will that plane carry 3000 lbs?
will the entire load of Semtex detonate? That's not such an easy task.
and explosions vent UPwards. The heavy fuel rods will be under water.
I doubt they would be scattered much,if at all.
and where does one FIND Semtex,a Czech explosive,in the US?
It will carry 4,000 plus a pilot and fuel for 100 miles or so with a
45 minute reserve.
I'm sure that the instructors at the Al Quaeda Terrorist Academy are
up to the task of teaching their people how to do that.
So how many lives are you willing to stake on that doubt?
Geez, do you have Asperger's syndrome or some such? For "Semtex"
substitute any other suitable explosive--I'm sure that the Al Quaeda
Terrorist Academy provides its graduates with a long list of suitable
materials plus the knowledge to improvise if needed.
It's the problem hallerb has w/ his exaggerated proposed scenario--it
just isn't a reasonable physical conclusion to what would happen given
the initiating event.
Certainly not the "thousands of miles" idea--it would surely make a mess
of the building, some of the support structure and perhaps scatter a few
fission products around the site, but doing much more than that would be
really, really tough to get to happen. Nothing nuclear is even
physically possible; nothing thermal is beyond remote. Loss of
shielding directly over the storage pool would require simply staying
away w/o proper protection if the water pool were lowered.
Technically any explosive including good ole dynamite would do
the trick at 3K lbs. This is less in tonnage than Controlled Demolition
and similar companies use to pancake buildings, so getting it all to
detonate when it is packed that tightly isn't all that hard. I'd have to
look over my old notes from the 70s, but IIRC once semtex (or C-4 for
that matter) is started, that much go pretty much sympathetic with block
one being initiated by a blasting cap, block 2 initiated by block 1,
etc. However, as I mentioned, it has been about 30 years since I had a
reason to look that stuff up...
Explosions pretty much go in every direction. But, like me, it
tends to concentrate in the path least resistance. Thus the theory
behind shaped charges, but the math and engineering of doing that in
this case is beyond my meager skills. Shaped charges also need to
specifically placed to get the best bang for the buck (so to speak) and
that would be almost impossible in this case.
However, as with much of the terrorism threats, we are
overthinking this scenario. From the T's viewpoint, getting in there and
blowing up anything with the name nuclear before it is enough. As was
noted by that great sage and noted philosopher Vladimir Ilyich Lenin:
"The purpose of terrorism is to terrorize." They don't have to get it
exactly right to achieve their goals.
Actually, 3000 pounds would just be a waste of explosives. A properly
shaped 100 pound charge would shoot the engine block through the
containment vessel like a bullet.
These days, with a GPS autopilot, you don't even need anyone in the
Which are placed in specific places to fairly high tolerances which
would be impossible in the scenario of a plane going into the building.
Putting it all in the plane in the first place pretty well rules out the
ability to shape it correctly.
Which don't look anything at all like an engine block as a projectile.
Nor does the containment building look like tank armor so results aren't
It's difficult to factually discuss much of reactor protection since
scenarios and all are restricted data. Consequently simply can't say
much more specifically about what has been looked at other than a
significant amount of work has been done to quantify risk and
vulnerabilities in order to deal with contingencies.
But where? This is hardly a smart bomb in design. Also, the copper
slug behaves much differently physically, aerodynamically, etc., from
the engine and that would make a difference. As was mentioned, anti tank
rounds can be aimed, the engine block really can't even if "ejected" by
a shaped charge.
An engine block won't do it. A whole effing jet fighter won't do it
(that's been tested with a similar structure). A geezly 707 hitting
flat out won't do it (that was the design criterion when the original
standards were set, and I'm sure the margins were very large). What a
shaped charge will do is another story, but rigging a shaped charge in
kamikaze could be difficult--you'd need to do a good deal of
reengineering on the plane I think to get the explosive charge into
the right place and still have somewhere for the pilot to sit.
Now, if you want a _nasty_ scenario consider some group stealing one
of Virgin Galactic's White Knights and putting a shaped charge on it
in place of the SpaceShip. That gives them 30 tons of payload on a
fully aerobatic airframe and pretty much complete freedom on the
But stealing one of NASA's Shuttle transporters and mounting the bomb
in place of the Shuttle could do even worse--that could give them 75
tons of explosives.
The trouble with both those scenarios though is that they have to
steal a very high profile aircraft and then hide it somewhere (in an
unusually tall and rather larger hangar) while they mount the bomb.
Probably be just as easy to just steal a B-52 and a load of
bunker-busters to begin with.
Share some of your thoughts with us on how to snag a space shuttle and
where to hide it. I think you may be on to something if it weren't for
a few minor details.
That cargo bay in the back would be a kick ass place to store explosives.
Who said anything about a Space Shuttle? I was talking about one of
As to how to "snag one", you walk on, start the engines, and fly off,
same as you steal any other airplane. It's probably best to not steal
it while there's a Space Shuttle on top.
And I stated specifically that hiding it was going to be a problem, so
why are you asking me where to hide it?
What "cargo bay in the back"? The transporter's "cargo bay" isn't any
different from the cargo bay in any other 747.
The original analyses of containment, etc. are, of course, in the FSAR
and there's much available in the NRC dockets on those. They're
interesting but marginally relevant to other specific terrorist threats.
The work specifically in that area is treated mostly as restricted data
for obvious reasons and so isn't readily available (the old saw "if I
told you what we worked on and the results, I'd have to shoot you" :) ).
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