July 5, 1989 |
Steam vents. To most Philadelphians, the words conjure up images of street people huddled in the warming vapors of sidewalk grates, seeking refuge from the cold. For Sally Locksley, the words recall pain. The 32-year-old social worker at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia was walking home one afternoon in January when she passed near a steam vent on Market Street, "hoping for a little blast of warmth," she said. Instead, Locksley wound up with second-degree burns on one ankle that kept her painfully hobbled and bandaged for a month.
July 18, 2012 |
If you haven't felt heat like this in awhile, you must have been out of town. For the 15th time this month, and the 24th time this year, the official temperature in Philadelphia hit 90 today, and was up to 93 at 2 p.m. at the airport. Yes, that's a lot of 90s. The long-term normal for the entire year is 26 days of 90 or better, with 17 of those by the end of July. The region is getting a minor puff of relief today in that the air isn't quite stuffed with water vapor, the relative humidity has dropped below 40 percent, and the heat indexes are staying in the 90s. But Wednesday could be significantly more uncomfortable, as the combination of an approaching front and an area of heat-pumping high pressure over the Atlantic combine to brew a water-vapor broth over the region.
September 15, 1989 |
It was the wee hours of the morning when the street trembled and the sidewalk ripped open with a loud, resounding "Boom. " The next few moments were sheer terror for Walter Wofford as he scrambled from his truck to seek stable ground. "Every time I got up, I fell down," said the grandfather of nine. "I couldn't maintain my balance. I just couldn't get up. I must've fell two, three, four times. " "I never saw anything like it," he added. No wonder. What Wofford saw shortly before 4 a.m. yesterday was a shower of rocks, stones, mud, and grit spewing from a rupture in a major steam line buried about eight feet below the sidewalk on 15th Street, just south of Callowhill.
March 9, 1986 |
Energy projects bloom in the high desert here. Straight ahead is Solar One, 100 acres of mirrors all trained on a water tank 300 feet in the air. When the sky is a blue bowl, they focus enough light to make steam, which turns a turbine and makes enough power for 5,000 Southern California homes. Across the road is the SEGS (Solar Energy Generating Station) farm, made up of miles of curved mirrors laid end-to-end, around an oil-filled pipeline. The mirrors rotate around the pipe as the light changes, heating the oil as it is pumped through to the steam-generation plant.
October 25, 1998 |
Stepping into the engineer's cabin of the 78-ton steam engine that pulls the New Hope & Ivyland passenger cars can be intimidating. Heat from the core of the train, steam and water residue from the various exhausts, and the groaning, humming, creaking grind of gears and valves gives the impression that you are entering the humid mouth of some very old, very hungry, beast. But Pete Bransky, the engineer, looked perfectly at home aboard the train on a recent autumn day. This beast is his baby.
January 19, 1996 |
Center City steam loop customers may soon get more from their steam than a little heat. Trigen Energy Corp., the White Plains, N.Y., company that owns Philadelphia's steam loop, announced yesterday that it had acquired a firm that makes small turbine generators designed to produce electricity from the same steam used to heat a building. "It's a hidden value we've had in our steam for years that we hadn't figured out how to capture," said Thomas R. Casten, Trigen's chief executive.
July 7, 1997 |
Reading Energy Co. is eyeing a power-generation plant on the old Staley property, billing itself as one of the building blocks to the borough's revitalization efforts in that area. Reading officials said the power company was negotiating with Staley, whose almost-complete closure in the mid-1980s took a third of the borough's tax revenue. Reading vice president Carl Strickler said they wanted to buy the plant's cogeneration facility, used to create electricity and steam-based energy.
November 1, 1988 |
Tomorrow's Army is going to be a lean, mean - and expensively clean - fighting machine. After 12 years of research and development, the Army has begun buying - for nearly $16,000 apiece - a fleet of custom-built, battlefield-ready steam cleaning units, even though commmercial cleaners can be bought for about $2,000 each. Government auditors are wondering why the Army plans to invest $100 million for more than 6,000 cleaners, especially in light of a couple of unsettling problems they've uncovered: The units can't routinely be used in peacetime because of environmental concerns and they're impractical for combat use because they're so noisy.
January 17, 2000 |
Nestled between the Schuylkill and the expressway of the same name lie the fallen leaves of Lower Merion. Speeding motorists can catch quick glimpses of fall's decline - if they look fast. Bits of sugar maples, black gums and dogwood trees are piled high here, forming long lines of brown mush just off the shoulder of the westbound lanes between the Gladwyne and Conshohocken exits. There is nothing unique about this 17-acre lot. It's a composting site like pretty much any other.
September 15, 2009 |
Two behemoth cylinders destined to generate steam at Three Mile Island produced something vastly different yesterday: groupies. Hundreds of onlookers craned their necks and snapped photos as a caravan more than a mile long inched into southern Chester County from Maryland on Route 1 at a dizzying top speed of 3 miles per hour. One of the top viewing hubs was the Wawa at Routes 272 and 1, where some visitors had to be shooed away by police after they tried to set up lawn chairs in the parking lot. "This place was packed," said Dana Casella, 22, of Nottingham.