Rachel Madow explains that the problem with the spent fuel rods, may be worse than the situation with the reactors:
- Put the Japanese Air Force on alert
- Assemble a huge fleet of helicopters. Put shielding underneath them.
- Accumulate enough sand, boric acid, and concrete to smother these reactors, to entomb them forever.
- This is what the Soviets did in 1986, calling out the Red Air Force and sandbagging the reactor with over 5,000 tons of concrete and sand.
Meteorologist Jeff Masters blogs about the weather and possible paths the radiation may take
“One case where a ground level release might get lofted to high altitudes is when the source region is located near an approaching low pressure system (extratropical cyclone), as is the case today.”
Computer model has radiation plume over the ocean for several days and then hitting Alaska. Radioactive particles are heavy and will mostly fall int0 the ocean before hitting land. But this weather system in Japan makes it more likely for the particles to reach the west coast of the United States and Canada.
Rem and millirem can be converted in a straightforward way to the SI unit, sievert:
1 rem = 0.01 Sv = 10 mSv = 10000 μSv
1 millirem = 0.00001 Sv = 0.01 mSv = 10 μSv
1 Sv = 100 rem
1 mSv = 100 mrem = 0.1 rem
1 μSv = 0.1 mrem