A beautiful shot of the Super stack at one of Vale’s many operations.
Sudbury Basin formed by comet, not asteroid, researcher says.
The Sudbury Basin is the second largest known impact crater on Earth — 62 kilometres long, 30 kilometres wide and 15 kilometres deep.
“Sudbury is kind of unique in terms of meteorite impact. It’s one of the largest and one of the oldest.”
The fiery object that struck near Sudbury, 1.8 billion years ago, formed a deep hole that can be seen from space.
When it slammed into the earth, it punched a hole in the Earth’s crust, allowing the mantle below to well up and fill the basin with a thick sheet of melted rock. A subsequent shock wave shattered the surrounding rocks, riddling them with fissures and faults that filled up with precious minerals from the melted rock below.
Today, the Sudbury Basin produces hundreds of tonnes of nickel and copper every year and has the biggest concentration of mines in the world. The wealth of minerals was discovered by accident when railway engineers were constructing the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1885.
Comet Vs Asteroid
Formerly Inco Nickel Limited Vale Operations is now mining out the comet or asteroid strike in Sudbury Basin.
Here shown in the photo is the operations at the Copper Cliff smelter, captured from the slag dump track.
Being the tallest chimney in Canada at 1250 feet,and the second tallest in the free world.
As you pobably noticed the emmissions appear brown and dirty,but in reality,the image was captured thru a filtered lense.
Dust and gases are drawn off the furnaces,and recycled by scrubbers and electrostatic precipitators.Large OGF or off gas fans pull sulphur and other gases to other areas for by-products,such as sulphuric acid.
Most of the plume is condensed water vapor. 😊
Emissions reductions and increases in thermal efficiency have reached the point where natural draught is no longer sufficient to draw flue gas up the stack, necessitating the use of induced draught fans and/or reheating of the flue gas using natural gas burners.
Of particular interest to geologists are the now exposed rocky outcrops, which have been permanently stained charcoal black, first by the pollution wafting over the decades from the roasting yards then by the acid rain in a layer which penetrates up to three inches into the once pink-grey granite.
On November 3, 2014, Vale announced that they may decide to stop using the stack, following a $1 billion project to reduce emissions by 85% that negates the need for the stack. If no other use for it is found, Vale may decommission the superstack, demolish it, and replace it with a much smaller chimney.
As a result of the excessive lead emissions from the Inco Superstack, the surrounding community of Copper Cliff was found to have levels of lead in soil tests at a level sufficient to cause harm to young children.
While the risk calculated for typical exposures to lead within the Sudbury area are within
acceptable benchmarks, levels of lead in some soil samples indicate a potential risk in
localized areas of Copper Cliff, Coniston, Falconbridge and Sudbury Centre.
In contrast to the reduction of SO2 emissions, Inco’s Superstack stands out in North America in its arsenic, nickel and lead emissions to the atmosphere. Using data compiled by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, Inco alone accounts for 20% of all of the arsenic emitted in North America, 13% of the lead and 30% of the nickel. Although it is not strictly fair to compare a nickel-copper smelter to a lead smelter, by so doing one can get an idea of how poor the containment of lead is at Copper Cliff. In 1998, Inco emitted 146.7 tonnes of lead at Copper Cliff with a smelter production of 238,500 tonnes of nickel-copper matte. The EPA regulations in the United States require a primary lead smelter to limit emissions of lead to 3.0 gm per tonne of product. With this emission factor, Copper Cliff would be required to limit emissions of lead to approximately 1 tonne per year, demonstrating that the actual emission is about 150 times greater than allowed by US regulations for a lead smelter. Even with the 85% reduction postulated by Hatch, Inco would still emit 10 tonnes per year of lead, or four times the amount allowed by the EPA for a lead smelter.