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And dumping the contaminated water far out in the Pacific is FAR from the best solution. It is possible to extract most of the contamination from the water. A reverse osmosis plant designed for desalinization would probably do an excellent job, but this likely will end its usefulness as a source of fresh water. And there are likely other solutions cheaper than buying a desalinization plant. I recall that there were plants on site at Fukushima that served to decontaminate water, but have no idea of the throughput.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 11:46:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Given the cognitive Happy-Happy La-La-Land when they built the place I doubt the on-site throughput is much larger than normal operating needs.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 01:12:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Even that would help.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 01:25:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It would help - for a while - no question.

I note, eventually, the RO membrane gets clogged and has to be cleaned or replaced.  Since these systems are not generally designed to filter sea water I'd bet the operational time and volumes wouldn't be all that great, each time the membrane is pulled it has to be checked to ensure it's working properly, if not replacement membranes have to be stalled (and where are they going to get 'em?,)  & etc. & blah-blah.

Plus if you've got people doing that they aren't doing something else that may be more important?

And it is questionable the system is still functional.

If it is functional the Incident Commander may be keeping in reserve for some very good reason(s).  One reason to withhold an asset is to give yourself the ability to react/respond to the unexpected.  

And it's possible they still haven't faced-up to the situation and are more interested in playing Save-Your-Face fiddlefuck games than dealing with the situation.

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

by ATinNM on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 02:19:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Since these systems are not generally designed to filter sea water

Desalinization plants? If it will get rid of sodium and potassium chloride it will certainly block uranium and cesium particles or compounds. And clogging the filters with such contaminants would be the point, along with generating a much larger volume of relatively clean water which could be discharged into the ocean, or reinjected into the reactor cores for cooling. But the most immediately practical plan would be to make arrangements to use an existing RO facility and to pay for replacement fresh water via tankers for that portion of the plant devoted to decontamination along with paying for replacement or refurbishment of the contaminated RO equipment.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 03:23:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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