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NRC Meteorologists Role in Support of the Headquarters Operations Center During an International Event

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NRC Meteorologists Role in Support of the Headquarters Operations Center During an International Event Kevin Quinlan Physical Scientist, NRO U.S. Nuclear Regulatory ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: NRC Meteorologists Role in Support of the Headquarters Operations Center During an International Event


1
NRC Meteorologists Role in Support of the
Headquarters Operations Center During an
International Event
  • Kevin Quinlan
  • Physical Scientist, NRO
  • U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
  • June 27 - 29, 2011
  • Oak Brook, IL
  • Nuclear Utility Meteorological Data Users Group
    (NUMUG)

2
Purpose of Presentation
  • To explain the typical role of an NRC
    Meteorologist in the Headquarters Operations
    Center (HOC).
  • To describe the unique challenges of the
    meteorologists while supporting an international
    event.

3
Outline of Presentation
  • Typical role of an NRC Meteorologists in the HOC
  • Summary of Events in Japan
  • Initiation of Meteorological Support
  • Unique Challenges of International Support
  • Creating and Verifying Weather Forecasts
  • Determining Wind Speed and Direction at time of
    Large Releases

4
Typical Role of HOC Meteorologist
  • Gather available meteorological observations and
    forecast data
  • Update RASCAL file with most up-to-date forecast
    and observation data
  • Provide short and long-term forecasts to the
    Protective Measures Team (PMT) lead
  • Evaluate the presence or absence of local
    meteorological phenomenon

5
Location of Events and Information Sources
6
Summary of Events
  • Friday March 11th _at_ 236 pm local
  • Magnitude 9.0 earthquake 231 miles northeast of
    Tokyo.
  • Quake is fifth largest in the world (since 1900).
  • Earthquake generated a 14m Tsunami
  • Earthquake
  • Automatic Shutdown of the 3 Operating Units at
    Fukushima Dai-ichi
  • Offsite Power Lost
  • Initial indications were that Emergency Diesels
    operated
  • 14m Tsunami (less than 1 hour later)
  • All Emergency Back-up Power Lost
  • 8-10 hours later Station Batteries Depleted

7
Initiation of Support by NRC HOC
  • The U.S. NRC Headquarters Operations Center (HOC)
    was activated to provide 24 hour support to the
    American Embassy in Japan and American citizens
    and servicemen in the region.
  • Within the HOC organization, the NRC
    Meteorologists support the PMT, whose role is to
    advise the Executive Team (ET) on
  • the potential consequences of an event
  • the status of protective actions underway
  • any conditions that might impede necessary
    protective actions

8
Unique Challenges of International Support
  • Determining availability of near real-time onsite
    met data
  • Identify offsite sources of met data
  • Familiarization of foreign country on-line data
    resources
  • Familiarization with local and regional
    topographic settings
  • Language barriers and time zone conversions
  • Determining operating status of nearby
    observation stations
  • Establish international agency contacts through
    liaisons

9
Initial Sources of Observation Data
  • Japanese Meteorological Agency (JMA) hourly
    recording stations in Sendai, Onahama, and
    Fukushima City

Source Adapted from Japan Meteorological Agency
http//www.jma.go.jp/jma/en/menu.html
10
Initial Sources of Observation Data (Cont.)
Hourly Observations for Sendai Meteorological
Observatory
Source Japan Meteorological Agency
http//www.jma.go.jp/jma/en/menu.html
11
Initial Sources of Forecast Data
  • Short-term forecasts from the National
    Atmospheric Release Advisory Center (NARAC)
  • 5 km resolution Weather Research Forecasting
    (WRF) model simulations initialized from Global
    Forecast System (GFS) data.
  • 45-km resolution GFS output
  • JMA forecasts for Sendai, Onahama, and Fukushima
    City
  • Forecast and observation websites
  • Weather Underground, Weather Channel, Wind Finder

12
Updating Forecasts
  • Received forecast from NARAC every 6 12 hours
  • Compared hourly WRF output against other
    available sources for consistency
  • Updated RASCAL file to add new forecast data
  • Created visual forecast tools (e.g., wind roses,
    directional arrows)

13
Example of Visual Forecast Tool
14
Long Range Forecast Tools
Daily forecast from JMA (Above). Hourly forecast
from Wind Finder based off GFS (Right). 45-km GFS
output from Wind Finder (Below).
15
Onsite Data from Fukushima Dai-ni
Wind Dir ? Wind Speed ?
Note Observations typically in 10-minute
intervals Source Tokyo Electric Power Company
(TEPCO)
16
Onsite Data from Fukushima Dai-ni vs. NARAC WRF
output (March 16-24)Wind Direction
17
Onsite Data from Fukushima Dai-ni vs. NARAC WRF
output (March 16-24) Wind Speed
18
Large Release Events
Source of Radiation Data TEPCO
19
Aerial Monitoring Flight Data
Source http//blog.energy.gov/content/situation-j
apan/
20
Determining Wind Speed and Direction at time of
Large Releases
  • NRC Meteorologists asked to determine the wind
    speed and direction during the timeframe of the
    largest releases.
  • Gap in RASCAL meteorological data file between
    3/13/11 at 1000 JST and 3/14/11 at 1700 JST
    (total of 31 hours)
  • NRC staff used available hourly data from Weather
    Underground for Sendai to fill in part of the gap.

21
N W S E N
22
(No Transcript)
23
Summary of Meteorologist Support
  • Presented with a variety of challenges outside of
    normal responsibilities
  • Determining functioning observation sites
  • Determining availability of onsite met data
  • Language barriers
  • Working with HOC international liaisons to answer
    inquiries
  • Supported PMT Lead and Dose Analysts with current
    forecasts and recent historical data
  • Collected, graphed, and analyzed radiation and
    meteorological data from multiple sources

24
Summary (Cont.)
  • Meteorologists role in support of HOC was just
    one of many moving parts.
  • Many sources of public information were provided
    by government entities.
  • NRC is committed to a systematic and methodical
    review of Fukushima events and response.

25
  • Thank You!
  • Questions?

26
Online Resources
  • Weather Underground
  • www.weatherunderground.com
  • Weather Channel
  • www.weather.com
  • Wind Finder
  • www.windfinder.com
  • Japan Meteorological Agency
  • www.jma.go.jp/jma/indexe.html
  • DOE Blog
  • http//blog.energy.gov/content/situation-japan/
  • TEPCO
  • http//www.tepco.co.jp/en/index-e.html
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