Jellyfish swarm forces nuclear plant shutdown

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20 Responses to “Jellyfish swarm forces nuclear plant shutdown”

  1. Anonymous says:

    (good to know that the plant is safe. i’m in trouble about something though: in its state of controlled shutdown, does it need a constant flow of seawater to maintain it?)

    .~.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Sure they’re not Japanese Man-o-Nuclear Wars?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Er, Portuguese. I need coffee.ster

  4. Richard Kirk says:

    Giant swarms of jellyfish attacking nuclear powerstations? That has got to be a 1950′s horror movie. Seriously, if you are blonde, look good in a short dress, and can go “eeeeeee!” very loudly, then you should get down there: they need you.

  5. andy maluche says:

    A while back jelly fish blocked the intake of cooling water at the Sual power plant in the Philippines causing a vast power outage in all of Luzon (main island) for a couple of days.

    I thought nuclear power plants couldn’t be cooled with sea water?

    • Anonymous says:

      You’re right, under normal conditions. Ever notice how power plants (coal and nuclear) are located near lakes, rivers, and oceans? It’s to cool the coolant coolant.

      Coolant 1 cools the core (transports heat out of the core). Water, CO2, and He are used.

      Coolant 2 cools coolant 1 (creating steam, which drives turbines). Water is usually used, but gas can be too.

      Coolant 3 cools coolant 2 (so that coolant 2 can be reused). Coolant 3 is what is cooled in the iconic nuclear cooling towers. You just want cheap, plentiful coolness as a source, so rivers, and oceans work great.

      Here’s an example of the 3 stages of the type of reactor in the article: http://www.nucleartourist.com/type/gcr.htm

    • Anonymous says:

      Nuclear reactor cores can not be cooled with salt water, without ruining them. Nuclear power plants like many other types of power plants have other parts that also heat up and need to be cooled for example steam turbines, heat exchange pumps and so on.

  6. TabulaRasa says:

    And because nuclear power is so safe and controllable…

    …state promised pick up the bill in case of a nuclear disaster (at least here in germany) because insurance companies refused to insure them.
    …they decided to shut down their plant even if that means losing revenue.
    …you can buy plutonium and uranium in your local home depot.
    …everyone wants to live near such a plant.
    …the area around chernobyl is still a no-go area.
    …we go great lenghts to find suitable places to bury our nuclear waste.
    …people living near fukushima are being evacuated.

    basically, there is no difference between a nuclear bomb and a nuclear plant. To stick with the car picture: there is no difference between what’s going on in your car engines combustion chamber and what’s going on when a conventional bomb blows up.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Thanks, Maggie, for injecting calm into this debate about nuclear power. After Fukushima I was ready to swear off ever supporting nuclear energy again. But after reading your much more nuanced and sane coverage, I realized most of my fears were unfounded. There is so much hyperbole and scaremongering on the part of anti-nuclear activists that it becomes hard to separate fact from fiction. In truth, very, very, very few people have ever died from nuclear accidents (certainly when compared to the coal industry), and our ability to contain accidents is improving with each new generation of reactors. The real issue is more about making sure reactors are properly funded for maintenance and improvements. Basically, this is how I’ve learned to stop worrying and love nuclear power.

    • querent says:

      “After Fukushima I was ready to swear off ever supporting nuclear energy again. But after reading your much more nuanced and sane coverage, I realized most of my fears were unfounded.”

      “In truth, very, very, very few people have ever died from nuclear accidents (certainly when compared to the coal industry), and our ability to contain accidents is improving with each new generation of reactors. The real issue is more about making sure reactors are properly funded for maintenance and improvements.”

      You certainly have some well formed opinions, to have been so ignorant a few short weeks ago.

      Am I crazy, or does this read like a painfully obvious PR statement to anyone else?

      This is off topic, I know. Crazy about the jelly fish.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I’d just like to point out that here in the USA, we’d still be running that reactor, because precautionary measures are for pussies.

    If anything goes wrong no rich people will get hurt, so who cares anyway.

    This is also our attitude towards AGW.

  9. pepsibookcat says:

    And, you thought it would be the squid overlords we’d have to worry about…

  10. Gordon JC Pearce says:

    It’s probably worth pointing out before the “ZOMG FUKUSHIMA!” posts start that this is an Advanced Gas-Cooled Reactor, and therefore output power is about as controllable as a car engine. Open throttle, power goes up, close throttle, power goes down.

    The sea water does not cool the reactor, but parts of the steam plant which are pretty much identical to that for a coal-fired plant – one of the design critera was that the steam turbines should be effectively interchangeable with those from coal power stations.

    • eli says:

      “…output power is about as controllable as a car engine”

      By your words, can we conclude that this nuclear power station is as safe as a samovar?

    • emmdeeaych says:

      In general, if you’re going to contradict the post and the linked article, you should provide a citation. Your word is nice and all, but you’re a guest.

      • Gordon JC Pearce says:

        I wasn’t disagreeing with the post ;-)

        The Scientific American article is aimed at a less technical audience, and missed out a couple of fairly crucial bits of information about Torness. I did post a couple of links, to the BBC article and to a technical description of the pair of Torness AGRs, but obviously I need to lern2intarnet properly since they didn’t show up.

      • Alexander Polanco says:

        He’s correct. The BBC (Which I expect to have more accurate information about plants within their primary area of operation) says it’s an Adv. Gas Cooled. I would also point out that the SciAm article only references the popular conception of how nuclear power plants in general are cooled. It’s a Reuters article though, so I guess I can’t fault them for not knowing.

        Citation:

        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-13971005

        • emmdeeaych says:

          I definitely believed him, and you too, and I thank you for the citation – which is much more valuable than an anonymous voice in a fact based discussion.

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