Tokyo Outsider

Analysis and translation by a tatami-chair observer of East Asian economics and security.

Mystery Man at Fukushima Dai-ichi

The curious minds of Twitter have been piqued recently by this clip of a worker at Fukushima Dai-ichi apparently holding an eccentric pose at the camera for twenty minutes straight.


Here’s a shot posted on 16th March by American Public Radio, for comparison.

If he’s in the same place, there’s a hill missing… or perhaps a building. Let’s use a still from the video to see if we can work out where he is, and what he’s pointing at.

The closest tower intersects around half way along the western face of reactor two. The farthest tower is about one third in from the left hand side of reactor four, with the middle tower aligned to the right side of reactor four. We can superimpose the lines of sight on this map from the snappily named “Online Defense and Acquisition Journal“.

The position of the camera is where the lines would meet, but we’re working with approximations so let’s look for an area where he might be standing. This nice, big image of the complex from the south eastern corner, via economics blogger Demitri Kofinas, serves our purposes.

Those pipes he’s standing close to should be visible on a satellite image, too. Fortunately Google Maps have updated their satellite imagery of the power plant since the March disaster.

Is this where he’s standing? What do you think?


2 comments on “Mystery Man at Fukushima Dai-ichi

  1. Paul
    September 5, 2011

    Good work.

    Yes, thats where we decided he was standing when we analysed it at the AboveTopSecret thread on the disaster
    It was probably about 100 pages before this page linked to above.

    The only problem is, there are bushes and trees in the webcam image and none in the satellite photos in the ‘right’ place. We couldn’t resolve this anomaly either.

    • Tokyo Outsider
      September 5, 2011

      Hi Paul,

      Thanks for the feedback and the link to your discussion at AboveTopSecret.

      Agree about the bushes and trees – they bothered me too – but it’s now almost six months since the disaster. The tsunami is likely to have deposited soil, debris and plant matter that it won’t have been a priority to remove, and wildlife flourishes in Japan’s hot, wet summers.

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This entry was posted on September 4, 2011 by in English.

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