The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster: What Happened on “Day One”?
On the first day of the Fukushima disaster, Tepco reported that reactors 1, 2 and 6 were operating at the time of the quake and tsunami, and that the other 3 reactors were empty of fuel rods for periodic maintenance. 1, 2 and 6 were designed by GE, old model Mark-1.
Then reactor 3 blows and burns, and without any correction to the first report, Tepco then says 1, 2 and 3 were operating and the others were down. No. 3, which is run on plutonium-uranium MOX fuel, was built by Toshiba. (no. 5 is also a Toshiba) Toshiba has an international partnership with Westinghouse to build nuclear plants. The leak from No.3 accounted then for the reports of leaked plutonium.
Then reactor 4 building catches on fire, due to a dry cooling pool for spent rods. No..4 is built by Hitachi, which has a partnership with GE to build nuclear plants and also currently develop a laser (plasma) separation process for plutonium extraction.
The fire is so extreme (for depleted uranium) that the reactor is damaged. This suggests that reactor 4 was also internally damaged, meaning that it was operating at time of the tsunami, in an unscheduled run for either of two purposes: offline electrical generation for some reason inside Fukushima 1; or for a controlled reaction aimed at reprocessing (neutron enrichment) of spent fuel rods to increase their fissile uranium content (prior to extraction).
Next, reactors 4 and 5 are found to be generating hydrogen gas.
H gas is produced when the fission process, which releases electrons as well as neutrons, splits water molecules, H20, into hydrogen, supercharged oxygen and some hydroxyl radicals. The presence of a gas build-up indicates that these two reactors contain fuel rods, contrary to Tepco claims. This means reactors 4 and 5 had recently conducted runs or were being prepared for operations of an undetermined (and unreported) nature.
The other technical mystery is that Tepco engineers suggested that the electric power inside the plant was knocked out by something other than the tsunami. I have pointed to this possibility early on, that the quake and control disruptions could have made the control computers vulnerable to the Stuxnet virus.
The other possibility to consider is that a high-power electromagnetic event (for example a sudden energy burst from the released of ionized gases from the de-magnetized laser-plasma process) could have knocked out all electrical systems, similar to how a neutron bomb would incapacitate power system.
Very little of this information was recorded in newspaper reports, but came as nearly inadvertent admissions during the minute-by-minute televised coverage of the disaster by NHK.
The other major mystery is the one-minute blackout of NHK World News at the mention of the fire and plant shutdown at the Onagawa nuclear plant in Miyagi Prefecture.