Please Note: The Radiation Reported in “leaked documents” from Zaporozhye / Zaporizhia NPP is NOT “5 mSv/year”, but 5 µSv/hr !!! (RT mistranslation being spread widely)

Because this discovery of mine, already shared in  my Dec. 31, 2014 blogpost, Zaporizhia / Zaporozhye NPP Update: Russian Mainstream Media begins to wonder too, got “a bit buried” under all kinds of other findings, I’m repeating it here in this separate blogpost:

I’m seeing the mistranslation spreading from RT, completely unquestioned, to pretty much everywhere.  The error, as I’ll point out below, must have had its origin in a difference between Ukrainian and Russian, as well as the use of online translators that don’t notice such things.

Intro if new to this issue:  This blogpost is part of my month-long intensive investigation of what may actually have happened at the ZNPP plant in the Eastern Ukraine, starting with an alleged “electrical circuit issue” at the end of Nov. 2014 at ZNPP’s unit 3, an issue which popped back up, almost identically, at ZNPP’s unit 6 precisely a month later.

!–> For background, start with my Dec. 15, 2014 overview @ Was there a causal link between the Nov 28 2014 Accident at the Zaporizhye Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine and recent Radiation Spikes in Latvia and Romania? 

The “leaked” documents about the Dec 28-29 incident at ZNPP, just like the “hacked” documents about the Nov. 28 incident at ZNPP (See my blogpost about that HERE), mention radiation in these units:   мкЗв/год.  which is what got misinterpreted by professional journalists and bloggers all around. (Details below!)   The documents in question have already been included in previous blogposts:  here and here.

Why  5.05 мкЗв/год. (to take the Dec. 29, 2014 document example)  does NOT translate to 5.05 mSv/year, nor 0.00505 mSv/year (as RT erroneously wrote and has yet to correct.) is explained next:

I discovered a major glitch in translations, including in part due to Google Translator, of the order of confusing one with a thousand and a year with an hour.

What got me started is this:  it’s absolutely bizarre to report on an acute situation, an emergency even perhaps, in “per year” units.  (“And then what? Divide by 365 and again by 24 to get an idea of the hourly dose rate?   Who does that?”)   And what makes it double strange is that IF you take the “per year” as correct and calculate the ‘per hour’ dose rate, there’s no way it could be above any limit, ’cause it would be far below even the normal local background radiation.   I can pat myself on the back, I figured it out… Check it out!:

First the raw text, which the Russian LifeNews (http://lifenews.ru/news/147890) quoted from the ‘leaked documents’ (Google Translation below that):

  • For 12.28.2014:           На 6 утра 28 декабря на Запорожской АЭС в работе пять энергоблоков (1,2,3,4,5)… Общая мощность 4278 МВт, радиационный фон АЭС — 4,90 мкЗв/год., СВЯП — 4,76 мкЗв/год. — в 16,3 раза превышает допустимую норму, — сказано в сводке.
  • For 12.29.2014:     На 6 утра 29 декабря на Запорожской АЭС в работе пять энергоблоков (1,2,3,4,5)… В 6 утра 28 декабря шестой энергоблок отключен от единой энергосистемы… Общая мощность 4278 МВт, радиационный фон АЭС — 5,05 мкЗв/год., СВЯП — 4,91 мкЗв/год. — превышение в 16,8 раза, — сообщила ГСЧС Украины.

Google Translator detects ‘Russian’ and makes this of it:   “For 12.28.2014: At 6 am on December 28 at the Zaporozhye NPP operates five units (1,2,3,4,5) The total capacity of 4278 MW nuclear power plant radiation background 4.90 mSv / year., SVYAP 4 76 mSv / year. 16.3 times higher than the acceptable norm – said in a bulletin. For 12.29.2014: At 6 am on December 29 at the Zaporizhzhya NPP in five units (1,2,3,4,5) At 6 am on December 28 sixth unit is disconnected from the unified energy system The total capacity of 4278 MW nuclear power plant radiation background 5.05 mSv / year., SVYAP 4.91 mSv / year. – Exceeding 16.8 times – said GSCHS Ukraine.”

Some notes from examining the details:

mSv/year is the scientific abbreviation for milliSievert per year.  See my Radiation Units and Conversions for more on Sievert, Roentgen, etc.

1 mSv = 1000 µSv      (milli is 1000 times greater than micro)   1µSv = 0.001mSv

Now get this:  Google Translator examples showing differences between Russian and Ukrainian, revealing important differences:

  • 5,05 мкЗв/год. Russian–>English = 5.05 mSv / year.
  • However, add one space:   5,05 мк Зв/год.   Russian-> English = 5.05 microns Sv / year.
  • Also:  Just “мк” Russian-> English =  u ,  while just “мк”  Ukrainian->English =  mk 
  • “u” is sometimes used instead of “µ” to indicate “micro”, which “mk” sounds like (more so than “milli”, for sure.

–>  So, that indicates to me that this “mSv” is not actually meaning milliSievert, as TheAntiMedia reported in their “rough translation”, but actually in microSievert!

RT did get that one.  They wrote it in mSv, but correctly as they divided the shown number by 1000:  0.00505 mSv/year.

!!!–> But they didn’t spot the other one…  ‘Cause… I mean… Seriously?   “5.05 microSievert PER YEAR“?

(It gets better:  continued below this excerpt screenshot!)

Excerpt from RT.  They didn't spot the error themselves.  Full RT article at:  http://rt.com/news/218807-ukraine-nuclear-plant-leak/

So RT reported  “5.05 microSievert PER YEAR”, like what was reported very well might be correct (as in: the documents may be legit! and such values make sense).   I guess they don’t know much about doses…  Who reports on ‘the dose rate’ of a local acute radiological situation in terms of ‘per year’ anyhow???   What they reported breaks down to less than 0.0006 µSv/hr, less than the sensitivity of many Geiger Counters.  It would make the place practically devoid of radiation!  That’s ridiculous.   (And then RT goes on to make some comparisons… easily debunked with my my Dose Deception blogpost.  But that’s not the issue.)

So I eventually “broke the code” of the 2nd part of this puzzle:  the “per year” part, has an incredible clue:  a point.  a point,  !–>  .  <–!,

!!!–> as in ‘abbreviated’, as in “/год.“, not “/год”    Yeah… Who knew what Ukrainians can do in an abbreviated hour, takes the Russians a whole year?!  [Just kidding! ;-) ]   Check it out:   Two screenshots combined: the top one showing the Russian translation of a couple English words, the one below showing those exact same words translated to Ukrainian, colored scribbles added by me:

Both_justWordsGet it?  The Ukrainian word for “hour”, годину, abbreviates to год. , which looks precisely like the Russian word for “year”, год  (without the abbreviation point).  Hence RT’s and everybody else’s mistranslation.  If I’m not mistaken, I’m the only, or first, to point that out (an Allegedly Apparent Blog EXCLUSIVE ;-) ):

SO:   5,05 мк Зв/год. 

is NOT 5.05 mSv/year, nor 0.00505 mSv/year, but  = 5.05 µSv/hr !!!

  And yes, 5.05 divided by 16.8 = 0.3 µSv/hr, which is a logical maximum level for that altitude.  ZPNN lies at only 50 m above sea level.

5.05 µSv/hr !

If I may refresh your memory to help you put “5.05 µSv/hr” in context:

  • Japan Times (quoted in my Dec. 29 2014 blogpost, Medcom Geiger Counter Measurements in Southern Colorado – Dec. 2014 Notes.):  “Radiation levels in central Tokyo were as high as 0.809 microsieverts per hour on March 15, 2011″
  • On June 9, 2011, almost 3 months after the Fukushima-Daiichi’s multiple meltdowns, Illate Village, some 40 km for F1  measured 2.91 µSv/hr, which corresponded with a ground contamination of 3,7oo,ooo Bq/m^2 Cs-137.    These findings were part of what resulted in the mandatory evacuation zone getting expanded outside the neat 20 km circle to better correspond with the highest contamination levels.

IF (Even now on Jan. 4, 2015, this still all remains ‘a big if…’, but IF…)  IF this is true… that in the vicinity of the ZNPP, radiation was measured at over 5 µSv/hr…  THEN we very well might have yet another massive nuclear disaster on our hands.   And a global cover-up of epic proportions… 

Only onsite independent field investigations (radioisotope analysis of soil, filter and air samples) can bring clarity to this issue, I think.  The sooner the better.

Please note:  I am NOT claiming that there was a major nuclear accident, I’m merely asking questions, pointing out inconsistencies and sharing things I found that have given me very serious doubts about the official story that there wasn’t.    For an overview, see Was there a causal link between the Nov 28 2014 Accident at the Zaporizhye Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine and recent Radiation Spikes in Latvia and Romania?.

You’re welcome.

!–> DISCLAIMER <–!

[Last updated/edited:  Jan 4, 2015  4:44 pm]

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22 Responses to Please Note: The Radiation Reported in “leaked documents” from Zaporozhye / Zaporizhia NPP is NOT “5 mSv/year”, but 5 µSv/hr !!! (RT mistranslation being spread widely)

  1. Keith Welch says:

    Hi Michael. Some thoughts….
    In my view, the presence of 5 uSv/h dose rate on the site of this plant is not an indicator of a “massive nuclear disaster”. This is a very small dose rate. A serious accident would result in releases that would be detectable in the surrounding areas, which I have heard no evidence of.
    I don’t like to speculate, but here’s what I’d speculate, if in fact the report of 5 uSv/h dose rate at the plant is correct. My speculation also assumes that elevated rates at some area radiation monitors (presumably downwind of the ZNPP) are connected with the event.
    Here’s my theory (this is only a theory – I’m not a nuclear engineer):
    The plant did in fact suffer an electrical circuit issue of some sort that triggered a SCRAM (automatic shutdown of the reactor). The VVER plant is old Soviet design, and although it has a containment structure (unlike the RBMK), I’ll speculate that it’s systems to limit releases from the reactor building are relatively primitive. In particular, systems for “off-gas hold-up” are probably limited compared to Western designs. Regulatory restrictions on the emissions of such gases (short lived fission products – mostly noble gases) in western plants are very tight. In addition, the containment itself is probably configured to allow direct pressure relief to the environment (I’m speculating that the VVER containment is probably not capable of supporting much (maybe none?) overpressure, again in contrast to western designs). So, my speculation is that the scram brought on a transient that involved some venting of pressure from the primary coolant system. The vented gases were probably subsequently vented into the environment. The noble gas release could easily raise the dose rates locally and as the plume traveled, create a short term spike at a distance (this creates something called an “immersion dose”, by the way, and is actually comparable to an external exposure scenario). Since the data seem to show a short-term event, this is consistent with that monitoring data.
    Such an incident would not result in any long-term radiological or operational issues, and because the dose rates are very low and don’t persist very long, no significant dose to workers or the population would occur.
    Again, complete and utter speculation.
    Best regards, Keith

    • Keith, if you’re going to continue with posting many comments, could you do me a favor and first read my previous (December 2014) blogposts?

      The presence of 5 uSv/h dose rate on the site of (or relatively near) this plant very well COULD be an indicator of a “massive nuclear disaster”, all depends on the distance that measurement was taken. Not of the scale of Fukushima or Chernobyl, but still one that would have warrented public warnings (don’t drink the rain water, keep windows closed, that sort of thing. Maybe even a temporary evacuation zone). In late March 2011, on site at F1 1,000,000 µSv/hr was measured near Unit 2, 60,000 µSv/hr near Unit 1. So, yeah, this ZNPP is certainly not of the order of 3 full-on meltdown with reactor vessels blowing up and spent fuel pools burning empty. 5µSv/hr may, that sounds technically correct to me as well, be “a very small dose rate”; yet, this reductionist approach, of reducing everything to dose rates (and then, the case in nearly all reporting, mixing effective and absorbed doses), is part of what I call “the dose deception” (http://wp.me/puwO9-2iY). Such a low dose can indicate that the radioisotopes released into the air by far exceed the legal limits, and thus suggest a serious incident. The issue here is that ANY release has been officially denied.

      ” A serious accident would result in releases that would be detectable in the surrounding areas, which I have heard no evidence of.” Again, read my December blogposts: monitors have been turned off in many places, and there have been odd bumps and spikes at very great distances. As far as that is concerned, perhaps start with: https://allegedlyapparent.wordpress.com/2014/12/15/was-there-a-causal-link-between-the-nov-28-2014-accident-at-the-zaporizhye-nuclear-power-plant-in-ukraine-and-recent-radiation-spikes-in-latvia-and-romania/ and linked posts from there.

      “Regulatory restrictions on the emissions of such gases (short lived fission products – mostly noble gases) in western plants are very tight.”
      Come on now. Very tight… Right… So tight the greens had to get elected in Germany for the data to actually finally be released, exposing how loose those regulations actually are. Noble gasses can spike to 1,400,000 Bq/m^3 and that fact gets covered up their release publications in far more benign-looking year-averaged numbers. https://allegedlyapparent.wordpress.com/2014/12/25/radiation-spikes-and-nuclear-reactor-refueling-operations-other-random-puzzle-pieces/

      But as far as your theory of it having something to do with an off-gassing due to refueling or inspection; yes, that vein of thought I’ve pondered from the onset of this mystery as well.

      I’m interested in dialogue, but not in giving what I consider “pro-nuclear nonsense” a platform here. Not that this applies to you (yet), but I have zero-tolerance for “trolling”, too. If I get the impression of a “comment bombardment” that offers very little contribution to improve or add to a blogpost, I rule by the merciless delete button. Just saying.

      Maybe check this while you’re at it:

      http://www.ratical.org/radiation/Chernobyl/HEofC25yrsAC.html
      http://agreenroad.blogspot.jp/2013/05/scientific-nuclear-fraud-at-major.html

      I’ll get to all your other comments shortly. – mvb (Jan 7, 2014)

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  4. Keith Welch says:

    [snip]

    way too long.

    • Keith Welch says:

      Okay. How about this.
      What you wrote earlier (quoted below) is a conflation of dissimilar and unrelated data, and is not a technically valid depiction of “context”. It is misleading and creates confusion and fear instead of clarity (and I thought your intent was to clarify). If you won’t permit me to expand on that, then we’ll just be in disagreement without discussion…. a shame.
      Best regards, Keith

      “If I may refresh your memory to help you put “5.05 µSv/hr” in context:

      Japan Times (quoted in my Dec. 29 2014 blogpost, Medcom Geiger Counter Measurements in Southern Colorado – Dec. 2014 Notes.): “Radiation levels in central Tokyo were as high as 0.809 microsieverts per hour on March 15, 2011″
      On June 9, 2011, almost 3 months after the Fukushima-Daiichi’s multiple meltdowns, Illate Village, some 40 km for F1 measured 2.91 µSv/hr, which corresponded with a ground contamination of 3,7oo,ooo Bq/m^2 Cs-137. These findings were part of what resulted in the mandatory evacuation zone getting expanded outside the neat 20 km circle to better correspond with the highest contamination levels.

      IF (Even now on Jan. 4, 2015, this still all remains ‘a big if…’, but IF…) IF this is true… that in the vicinity of the ZNPP, radiation was measured at over 5 µSv/hr… THEN we very well might have yet another massive nuclear disaster on our hands. And a global cover-up of epic proportions…”

      • Your nuclear propaganda won’t get an outlet here, Keith. I advise to go troll somewhere else.

        It is not “creating confusion” to point out that seemingly benign doses may actually correspond with dangerous concentrations of radioisotopes in air or as deposited. The context in both cases are low doses (5 µSv/hr and less than 3 µSv/hr) due to fallout, in air (Tokyo-2011, and allegedly near ZNPP-late-2014) or in air above contaminated ground (Illate-2011, etc).

        You try to say I’m wrong on various things and then go on repeating standard dose deception, even bringing in banana bullshit and airplane flights to belittle the very different long-term dangers on inhaling/digesting fallout. This issue here is not for entertainment, sir. People want to use Geiger Counters to gauge relative dangers. You can put Geiger Counter on a piece of food and get 0.8 µSv/hr from its healthy Potassium content. Yet when fallout-contaminated air moves through an area, a Geiger Counter showing a mere 0.4 µSv/hr uptick, is actually an indicator of very contaminated air.

        That I stand by that, and that I do no longer appreciate your (very time-wasting, bs-packed, unspecific about what needs correction) comments, and that I’m therefor not interesting in giving you a platform “to discuss your expert views”, you may call that ‘a shame’ all you want. I’m fine disagreeing with you. Some other blogs may be more lenient. Find ’em. Try there.

        Take care.

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