After the hands and feet of emergency workers were burned by highly radioactive water, signs have pointed to the possibility of a crack in the reactor core of unit three at the Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant.
“This is the nightmare that haunts every physicist – a crack in the vessel,” Physicist Michio Kaku PhD, a professor at City University of New York, said on Good Morning America March 26. A crack in the vessel implies core damage, he noted.
Yesterday, Tepco officials apologized for allowing workers into the troubled nuclear plant without adequate footwear. Due to Tepco’s slow and seemingly inept response to the crisis, and opaque or conflicting communication, Dr. Kaku believes the time is overdue for an overhaul of the crisis management team.
“If I had the ear of the Prime Minister, instead of accepting their apology, I would remove them entirely from leadership of this crisis and bring in a top team of the world’s best nuclear physicists and engineers with the authority to call up the Japanese military,” Dr. Kaku said. “Only the military, led by an international team of top scientists, using Tepco as a consultant, can tame this monster.”
The use of saltwater to cool the reactor cores seems to have produced an undesirable side effect.