Clearing the Air – of Fog… and Raising the Bar

My last post featured a barely visible bridge across the Delaware River near where George Washington famously crossed from New Jersey to Pennsylvania on Christmas Day, 1776. That experience was interesting because of the heavy air and dense fog, but the picture  didn’t quite convey the ambiance.

I like the following two images a lot better however, near where George Shaw has gained some notoriety…

Background Of These Images

Jeanne and I were in Canada at “Niagara on the Lake,” which hosts the Shaw Festival each year, …the second largest repertory theater company in North America, staging plays written and inspired by George Bernard Shaw. Located on the shoreline of Lake Ontario at the mouth of the Niagara River, this quaint little town is about 24km (15mi) north of the Falls.

These positive slide film images were taken from the scenic Canadian Niagara Parkway on April 23rd, 1997.

As always, thanks for viewing and you can click-on or finger-stretch to zoom in. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂 

1920 Ford Model T Touring Car – Grandpa’s First?

 

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1921-00-00-005ABOVE: My grandfather was the photographer, likely in the fall of 1921 near Suffern, New York, as he took his family out for a Sunday drive. That morning started closer to home in Guttenberg, NJ, as seen in the lower picture. Grandma, my father, (age about 11,) and his sisters, (8 1/2 and 7,) were the passengers.

Below: I suspect the “Kerosene oil  carriage side lights” were an option, a nice touch.

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The image above is from the internet and, as a antique, selling for about $70 today. The entire cost of the new car, was about $325. A similar restored version is pictured below.

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Thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

(Feature image tonight:  remembering Gene Cernan from the last lunar landing mission)

A Few Favorite images

A few previously unpublished images from the archives – or – what to publish when you are a.) too busy, or b.) at wit’s end (end of wits?) to create anything else!

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Sandy Paws guarding the remote – Northern N.J. 5/4/15
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Tyler guarding the goal, N.J. – 4/25/15
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Gull scrounging for food, Seaside Heights boardwalk, NJ – 5/23/15
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Grazing around at the Senior Equine Retirement Farm, near ATCO, NJ – 5/23/15
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Home for the birds and the buzzin’ bees, Jersey Shore – 5/19/15
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Clouds blowing by the moon on a windy night, Jersey Shore – 2/23/15
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West side of Hudson River, Tompkins Cove, NY – 5/29/15
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Optimism by the Hudson River, Tompkins Cove, N.Y. – 5/29/15

Thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

 

UTAH: Day Three and Four – Lake Powell, Natural Bridges and Salt Lake City

 

Our four days exploring in Utah, continued early Saturday morning, 11/7/15, at the ‘outpost’ of Bullfrog, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area where we rented a small boat to explore nearby parts of Lake Powell, specifically Moqui Canyon. Later we would view the remarkable terrain in Natural Bridges National Monument, spend the night in Salt Lake City, and fly home Sunday, 11/8/15. 

This post contains 18 images most with comments. Browse through quickly, or click on for higher visual resolution.  

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From our lodge, early morning…houseboats moored at Bullfrog Marina
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One of the last days of the season, there were virtually no other renters despite what I considered perfect weather.
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Easily enduring chilly morning temperatures, the stunning sceanery kept the cameras busy, as Holly focuses here. 
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Seven year old Tyler was no exception.
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Moqui Canyon is one of hundreds of flooded canyons of the Glen Canyon portion of the Colorado River.
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The winding waterway, in just this one “side” canyon, goes on for a number of miles, twisting and turning with one incomparable view after another.

 

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We beached here where Holly, Steve and Tyler climbed and explored, as I relished in the awesome surroundings.
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All three are in this image, as photographed from the boat.
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Steve , camera in hand, explores around the bend.
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The weather today was cool, crisp and perfect; while summertime brings temperatures near 100 deg. F. (38 deg. C.) …with an abundance of houseboats and pleasure craft, many rented for a week at a time or privately owned.
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Steve, Holly and grandson Tyler

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I believe Lake Powell has only three access areas in its 186 mile (299 km) length and 1,960 miles (3,161 km) of shoreline, leaving plenty of exploration room.

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After returning the boat, driving for a few more hours, and seeing virtualy no one on the road, (except  a mounted cowhand coaxing his small herd of cattle,) we explored Natural Bridges National Monument in the later afternoon.
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A spectacular scenic roadway provides viewpoints for several bridges, this being  Kachina, 210 ft. (64 m) high.
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We continued late into the night to Salt Lake City and our room. Sunday morning, day four, 11/8/15, the Wasatch Mountains caught the early sunlight as seen from our hotel (see feature image at top of this post,) and the view above was of the Utah State Capitol building as we headed back to the airport.
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The Colorado Rockies are below our regional jet to Denver, then the long flight home – ending our otherwise short and memorable adventure.

As usual, thanks for viewing and comments are always welcome. M 🙂

UTAH: Great Salt Lake and Wasatch Mts – Day One

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My previous post was a prelude to this short series highlighting our recent four day adventure to Utah. Along with my son, daughter and seven year old grandson, we would experience a memorable, whirlwind adventure.

Please click on any of the images for a closer look.

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My daughter, and grandson on the edge of the Great Salt Lake. She tasted and confirmed the water was indeed… SALTY. The 1700 sq. mile (4400 sq. km) lake is relatively shallow and fish-less. This lookout is from the marina just west of the city. (1:50 PM)
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Passing through Salt Lake City, the pretty Wasatch Mountains dominate the cloud laden South East. We were  heading to Park City. (2:15 PM)
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Park City is a major winter skiing resort and summertime hiking hub.  (3:10 PM)

 

 

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The entire network of ski trails are now accessible right from downtown. This being the “shoulder” season between summer and winter, it’s open for hikers. The first snow of the season is visible on the grass.    (3:17 PM)
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The Wastach Mountains, near Sundance, Utah (4:37 PM)
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A  short distance up a winding alpine road, (Rt. 92,) is the trail head for 11,752 ft. (3580 m.) Mt Timpanogos, a spectacular but difficult 14 mile (22 km) RT climb which I had partially explored and nearly froze on, some years earlier. (5:09 PM)
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The Little Provo River winds through Robert Redford’s charming and impressive lodge in Sundance. It was a little after local sunset. (5:28 PM)
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Warming by the open fire-pit, we would shortly relax with dinner in the lodge and continue another 2 1/2 hours to Moab for the night. 

 

Day two will follow shortly.

Thanks for viewing, and comments are always welcome. M 🙂

Step up, Step Down, and Round They Go – The Dance of the Electrons, Part Three of Three

From the Ramapo River in New Jersey, To the Crust of the Earth and Beyond

See Part One Here

See Part Two Here

This journey traces our electrical power to its source – in three parts.

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Parts one and two follow the journey from our home in northern New Jersey, to just below the New York State line where this image was taken. A connection with this 138,000 volt transmission line and the moon will be noted at the end of this post.
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From our neighborhood ….along the local distribution grid …and through two sub-stations, we follow about seven miles to where it comes in from New York State, from the north. 
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A few miles further, these towers meet up with others at a significantly larger sub-station which fans transmission lines out in several directions. A primary “incoming” feed, is seen below.
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Probabaly in the 345,000 to 500,000 volt range, the cables on these structures carry serious loads, coming into the  sub-station shown in the previous photo,
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Here is a close-up of two cables bonded together, presumedly at the same alternating current phase, …for those of you who worry about such things. Each is about a closed fist in diameter and insulated only by the air. The larger spiral wires simply hold the cables to the brace.
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Heading south (right in this image,) over hills and valleys from Tomkins Cove, these imposing mono poles transfer the power lines from the western end of the trans-Hudson span (out of sight to the left.) The frame transmission tower in the background is not directly related. 
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Standing some 475 feet (148 m) high and separated by nearly a mile (1.6 km,) these towers carry 500,000 volts or more across the Hudson River….
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The top hand railing seen in both the photo above and those below indicate scale: about 4 feet (1.2 m) high. Note the relative size of the insulators!

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About a mile (1.6 km) left of the eastern tower are the two reactor domes of the Indian Point Nuclear Generating Plant, in Buchanan, New York.
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The magnetic-induction generators within, produce a three phase AC potential of several thousand volts, which is immediatly STEPPED-UP through transformers to the half million to 750,000 volt conductors exiting the plant. The lines coming out of the building  just right of center, and to the transmission tower behind,  mark the start of the transmission lines traced by this series.  Others feed Westchester County and parts of NYC… with significant presence also on the North-East U.S. regional grid.
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Technically: Inside Indian Point. An alternating current is produced in three phases, induced in coils of wire moving in strong magnetic fields within these generators. Relative movement must occur between the magnet assemblies and the coiled wires. The resulting  electromotive force is measured in volts, and leaves the generator first at a few thousand, then stepped up, via powerful  transformers,  to 500,000 to 750,000 volts for transmission… and for our use, sent across the Hudson River!
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The relative movement mentioned above is provided by a shaft directly connected to a steam turbine that spins the magnets, (or visa versa, the coils,) within the generator.  Technical Morass Follows: The steam is is produced in a kettle in which Hudson River water is heated via a water exchanger. That water, which is in a closed system, and highly pressurized, surrounds the reactor vessel where a form of slightly enriched uranium dioxide is fissioned by neutrons (usually under initial coaxing,) releasing heat energy and more neutrons to sustain a controled chain reaction. Spltting atoms!  Uranium “pellets” are bundled as fuel-rod assemblies within the reactors core.  Basic Summary: Simply, heat energy from unranium fission heats river water to make steam that turns the turbines that spin the coils (or magnets) in the generator, producing the dance of electrons –>electricity!
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The rods that fuel the reaction in the reactor’s core is comprised of compressed uranium dioxide pellets, which in turn is processed from uranium – a naturally occuring element in the earth’s crust. Above is a rock sample containing uranium. It is likely this is also part of the moon’s geologic make-up. (Remember the moon?)
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FINALLY, (Thank Goodness,) naturally occuring uranium and the earth itself, with its myraid forms of latent energy, originated as a spin off from our sun 4.5 billion years ago.  For now, and for the purpose of this project, the source of my warmed toast, is…the Sun. It’s all amazing, and amazing how we naturally take the science, (physics, chemistry etc.,) and resourceful human ingenuity …for granted! 

Disclaimer: Not being an electrical engineer or public utility employee, some values may be slightly different than stated, but should give a general idea of the actual grid and electrical generation. Any “system” or statistical corrections will be most appreciated.

With the exception of the I.P.Generator, the diagram and the uranium ore above, all photos in this series were taken by myself. General information, and those three photos are greatly apprieciatiated and obtained from various sources, including the internet. Additional information about this is available if requested.

As usual, thanks for viewing, and comments are always welcome. M:-)