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The Answer is Blowing in the Wind?

September 15, 2019
Wind Vector

Most probable downwind vectors from Marshall Steam Station and McGuire Nuclear Plant

Mooresville Annual Wind

The Mooresville thyroid cancer cluster lies within the most probable annual downwind envelope from Marshall Steam Station.  The Huntersville eye cancer “hot spot” lies within the most probable annual downwind envelope from McGuire Nuclear Station.

What power plant emissions can be carried downwind?

  1. Water Vapor. Marshall Steam Station and McGuire Nuclear discharge heat via once-through forced-evaporative cooling into Lake Norman.  The warmer Lake Norman water will increase evaporation into the atmosphere via the “Lake Effect” and send the moisture downwind.
  2. Coal Fly Ash.  Fly ash can be carried downwind from the Marshall Steam Station.  Emissions control equipment such as electrostatic precipitators and wet scrubbers reduce this. Unfortunately electrostatic precipitators and wet scrubbers don’t remove all of the dust and fine particle emissions pass through more often and can blow downwind.  The dust collection efficiency of Electrostatic precipitators is affected by the particle size of the aerosol (coal dust) to be collected. When dust collection is performed on an aerosol with different size particles using an electrostatic precipitator, the collection efficiency is high for the large particles, and low for the small particles., which can travel further downwind. Overall fly ash removal should be 95-99%.
  3. Uncovered coal ash piles can also increase emissions due to winds blowing across the pile.  Some leaching into the water table is also possible.
  4. Radionuclides. Radionuclides leaving McGuire Nuclear plants can be airborne and also contained within liquid effluents (cooling water discharge into Lake Norman). Coal fly ash can also contain some radionuclides.
  5. Electrons.  IMO electrons don’t get enough credit.  Electrons are mythical creatures(elementary particles) that generate strong electrical fields around the high voltage transmission lines leaving the plant.  5-7% of the generated electrical energy is lost to the surroundings because electrons don’t actually run along the wire, they take all paths.  It has been said a few go to the moon and back…  Also, electrons have been known to belch and swallow photons, some at very high energies.  The strong ionizing electric field around uninsulated high voltage transmission lines can ionize molecules in the surroundings (like Nitrogen and Oxygen) which then can also emit ionizing UVc radiation into the surroundings.  None of that is good for us carbon based life forms as ionizing radiation blasts holes in our DNA and other molecules.
  6. Charged Ion emissions around the high voltage transmission lines can also float with the air downwind of a powerplant.  Ozone and NOx are just a couple of the pollutants generated from high voltage transmission lines as they “cook” the air around them and electrically charge up any particulate emissions as the dust passes through the strong electric field around the high voltage transmission lines.

Items 1-2 can also increase flashover rates (Corona Discharge due to loss of Item 5.) and ionizing radiation emissions along the nearby high voltage transmission lines leaving the power plants.  Fly ash/carbon “soot” can be very conductive and can “dirty up” the insulators along the transmission lines, increasing corona discharge (Ionizing electric field emissions and ionizing UVc emissions).  High humidity/precipitation in the atmosphere from the forced evaporation from the powerplants can also attract dust and reduce the breakdown voltage on high voltage transmission lines and increase flashover and ionizing radiation discharge.

References:

  1. https://weatherspark.com/y/18920/Average-Weather-in-Mooresville-North-Carolina-United-States-Year-Round
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK201991/
  3. Treatise on Clean Surface Technology, Volume 1
  4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corona_discharge
  5. https://www.climatecentral.org/news/nuclear-snow-power-plant-produces-snow-in-penn-15501
  6. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/coal-ash-is-more-radioactive-than-nuclear-waste/
  7. https://www.hitachi-infra.com.sg/services/energy/dustcollection/principle/dustcollection.html
  8. https://www.academia.edu/37019234/Iredell_County_NC_Elevated_Thyroid_Cancer_Rates_A_New_Hypothesis_for_an_Environmental_Source_of_Ionizing_Radiation
  9. https://www.academia.edu/36559031/Huntersville_NC_Ocular_Melanoma._Could_it_be_the_most_obvious_answer?email_work_card=interaction_paper
  10. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ionization#Quantum_mechanical_description_of_ionization
  11. https://dukespace.lib.duke.edu/dspace/bitstream/handle/10161/2194/MortonV_MP.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

From → Biology, Geophysics

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