The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster

1928 Words Apr 30th, 2015 8 Pages
Sarah Byrnside
PhySci 111
Research Paper
24 April 2015
The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster was a nuclear accident that occurred in 2011 at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant following an underwater earthquake that produced tsunamis, eventually resulting in a full nuclear meltdown and toxic amounts of radiation being dumped into the atmosphere. This particular nuclear disaster is infamous because, despite the earthquake and tsunami, it is still considered a man-made disaster. Had Fukushima plant workers been properly trained regarding what to do in the event of a nuclear disaster and had the Japanese government reacted more swiftly and efficiently, the damage to the reactors would have been less extensive and a full nuclear meltdown could have been prevented altogether. The factors that led to the meltdown, however, can be learned from and used to develop better safety procedures and educate people so that hopefully the next nuclear accident can be avoided in the future. Simply put, the nuclear reactors at the Fukushima plant use chemical reactions to boil water, producing electricity. They achieve this through the process of nuclear fission, which is the splitting of an atom in two and gives off energy in the form of heat. If one of the pieces of the split atom collides with another atom, that atom will then undergo fission and hit other atoms which will undergo the same process. This chain reaction of splitting atoms continues on…
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