Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Display:
BBC - Adam Curtis Blog: A IS FOR ATOM

I am sorry I haven't put anything up recently. I have been busy finishing a new series of films for BBC-2

As a background to the ongoing crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant I am putting up a film I made a while ago called A is for Atom. It was part of a series about politics and science called Pandora's Box.

The film shows that from very early on - as early as 1964 - US government officials knew that there were serious potential dangers with the design of the type of reactor that was used to build the Fukushima Daiichi plant. But that their warnings were repeatedly ignored.

<snip>

In 1966 the US government Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards tried to force the industry to redesign their containment structures to make them safer. But the chairman of the committee claims in the film that General Electric in effect refused.

And in 1971 the Atomic Energy Commission did a series of tests of Emergency Core Cooling systems. Accidents were simulated. In each case the emergency systems worked - but the water failed to fill the core. Often being forced out under pressure.

As one of the AEC scientists says in the film:

"We discovered that our theoretical calculations didn't have a strong correlation with reality. But we just couldn't admit to the public that all these safety systems we told you about might not do any good"

And again the warnings were ignored by senior members of the Agency and the industry.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 05:17:57 PM EST
In each case the emergency systems worked - but the water failed to fill the core. Often being forced out under pressure.

WTF!? So now we have two possibilities: either the same electrical equipment failure that was discovered at the Fukushima Daini plant, or a really old crime of GE designers.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 05:25:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"We discovered that our theoretical calculations didn't have a strong correlation with reality. But we just couldn't admit to the public that all these safety systems we told you about might not do any good"

Another bit of evidence for my contention the Nuclear Power Industry are a bunch of liars.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 05:36:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They had a public debate on nuclear energy organised by El Pais today. Apparently one of the people in attendance was a famous physicist and current director of CIEMAT, an energy research centre.

Why the fuck did he have to reassure people nuclear power is safe as it is, as opposed to reassuring people that any technical flaws exposed by the current incident will be fixed by engineering?

So, in what may be my last act of "advising", I'll advise you to cut the jargon. -- My old PhD advisor, to me, 26/2/11

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 05:52:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
shrug

Why does the computer software industry keep making insecure operating systems?

Why is the preferred personal transportation device, i.e., a car, based on an engine with a maximum (IIRC) 17% fuel efficiency?

Why do people in undeveloped countries with a population greater than the agricultural carrying capacity of the country and no money to buy foodstuffs keep having kids?

My answer is: we, as a species, construct a Fairy Tale Reality and then live as if the FTR was Reality.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 06:07:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"science, bitches" is the new self-referential truth.

you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 06:08:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But that is not science.

So, in what may be my last act of "advising", I'll advise you to cut the jargon. -- My old PhD advisor, to me, 26/2/11
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 06:09:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yeah. With the management class the narrative is power for power's sake and with analytically intelligent people it's this.

you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Thu Mar 17th, 2011 at 06:18:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Top Diaries

Occasional Series