South Dakota Power Plant to Become 99.99 Percent Clean

| September 4, 2002

South Dakota Power Plant to Become 99.99 Percent Clean

Thanks to an experimental pollution control device developed by the Energy and Environmental Research Center at the University of North Dakota, a South Dakota coal-burning power plant could become the nation's cleanest, reports EarthVision Environmental News.

'The device is expected to remove 99.99 percent of the particulate matter released during coal combustion,' according to the report, 'easing the haze and respiratory problems caused by the tiny ash particles.'

Once the 'Advanced Hybrid Filter' (as the new device is being called) is installed for testing this fall, the Big Stone Power Plant is expected to emit an unprecedented 0.007 pounds of fly ash per million British Thermal Unit (BTU) from its smokestacks. That's more than four times less than the current emissions standard for the region, which is 0.03 pounds per million BTU.

The filter works by combining the two most common pollution control devices currently in use: electrostatic precipitators, which electronically charge two metal plates to which the ash then adheres, and baghouses, Gore-Tex filter bags that collect the ash. The project is the first of eight selected last year by the U.S. Department of Energy's Power Plant Improvement Initiative. Following the two-year testing period, the hybrid filter will be taken on as the Big Stone plant's permanent pollution control system.
--Chuck Terhark
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