New Trouble Reported at Japan
Fukushima Power Plant
EMF Protection Devices
Magnetic Field Detector
by Eric Talmadge | November 1, 2011
TOKYO — Officials detected a radioactive gas associated with
nuclear fission at Japan's tsunami-damaged atomic power
plant Wednesday, indicating there could be a new problem at
one of its reactors. They injected a substance that
neutralizes nuclear reactions as a precaution.
Gas from inside the reactor indicated the presence of
radioactive xenon, which could be the byproduct of
unexpected nuclear fission. Boric acid was being injected
through a cooling pipe as a countermeasure because it can
counteract nuclear reactions.
The Tokyo Electric Power Co., or TEPCO, said there was no
rise in the reactor's temperature, pressure or radiation
levels. The company said the radioactive materials inside
the reactor had not reached criticality — the point when
nuclear reactions are self-sustaining — and the detection of
the xenon would have no major impact on their efforts to
keep the reactor cool and stable.
"We have confirmed that the reactor is stable and we don't
believe this will have any impact on our future work," said
TEPCO spokesman Osamu Yokokura. He said no radiation leaks
outside the plant were detected.
Hiroyuki Imari, a spokesman with the Nuclear Industrial
Safety Agency, said the detection of the gas was not
believed to indicate a major problem, but its cause was
The plant was the site of the worst nuclear disaster since
Chernobyl in 1986.
A 12-mile (20-kilometer) exclusion zone has been in effect
since the earthquake and tsunami on March 11 crippled the
facility north of Tokyo, sending three of its reactors into
meltdowns, touching off fires and triggering several
The latest setback comes as TEPCO had reported significant
progress toward stabilizing the plant. TEPCO says it has
essentially reached a "cold shutdown" of the plant, meaning
the temperatures at the reactors are constant and under
Even so, a Japanese government panel says it will take at
least 30 years to safely decommission the facility.