Yokota Air Base received equivalent of chest x-ray to thyroid in 72 hours after onset of Fukushima Disaster

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Daily Inhalation Dose at Yokota Air Base (upper bound) 12.5 mrem (125 uSv) in three days March 20, 21, 22

The first weekend after the Tsunami, every adult in Tokyo got a 12.5 mRem thyroid dose.

That’s more radiation than a chest X-ray, focused on the thyroid.

That assumes that no lasting radiation remained in the body.

Subsequently testing was carried out;

  • 734 samples analyzed 593 Air Filter Samples
  • 4 Swipe Samples
  • 131 Soils
  • 6 Soil Cores
  • Gross Beta, Gamma Spec, Sr-89,90, Total Sr, Plutonium, Uranium, Americium/Curium

Lessons learned

  • Sampling is far more involved than normally played in exercises.
  • Data Came from Many Sources, but Not Always Readily Usable
  • It took time to get the samples to the US and scientists were only getting data on gamma emitting nuclides   The short-lived nuclides were decaying away over this time.
  • The team was never able to definitively determine the source term during the active DOE Response.
  • If the release and response occurs for weeks (as will likely be the case) you will need significantly more people resources than one would expect, people just start to wear out.

 Quote from Carolyn Wong of LLNL

“There will be no new samples today. Our FedEx package got Shanghai’d, literally, the package is in Shanghai, China

Session 12_Challenges in Determining the Isotopic Mix_Shanks

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