2 On The Road Blog

On October 9, 2004 we moved into our Hitchhiker fifth-wheel trailer and hit the road as full-time RVers. Email us at wowpegasus@hotmail.com if you would like to contact us.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Dakota Gasification Company

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From their brochure, "The Great Plains Synfuels Plant is the only commercial-scale coal gasification plant in the United State that manufactures natural gas.  This plant, originally costing $2.1 billion, begin operating in 1984.  Using the Lurgi process, the Synfuels Plant gasifies lignite coal to produce valuable gases and liquids.  The plant is capable of producing 170 million cubic feet of natural gas, which is sent through the Northern Border Pipeline to market."  We took the tour on which we watched a video and walked around the $8 million model of the plant while different operations were discussed.  You can see the video on YouTube using these search parameters, "Dakota Gasification Company tour show".   It's an interesting video.

In the foreground is the gasification plant with Antelope Valley Station, a lignite-based electric generating station, just to the north.  "The two plants share resources such as coal supply, site access, along with water supply, delivery and storage facilities."
The two huge storage units are for anhydrous ammonia.
They have several places where the trucks can park to load anhydrous.


The rail line has multiple spurs.

Through all it's different processes the plant can produce natural gas, anhydrous ammonia, ammonium sulfate, crude cresylic acid, phenol, krypton-xenon, liquid nitrogen, carbon dioxide, naphtha and tar oil.  They will soon be producing urea.  Watch the YouTube video to see the uses for each of these products.


The white building in the background is the coal-handling building to which coal is trucked.  The coal is sorted with the particles too small for gasification sent to the Antelope Valley electric generating plant.

Did you wonder how we got high enough to take the first couple of photos of the plant?  Well we went up to the overlook.  Not the greatest road in the world.

They had a dragline bucket on the hill.

I could have actually driven up into it!

One of the little trucks delivering coal to the plants.



This was the bridge the "little" trucks used to get from the coal mine to the plants.
 


A dragline at work.

Monday, June 22, 2015

North Dakota Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center and Fort Mandan

From the Lewis and Clark website, "The North Dakota Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center provides an overview of the Lewis & Clark Expedition, with special emphasis on the time spent at Fort Mandan during the winter of 1804- 1805."

Notice that the sentence at the top of the photo is missing a comma.  That sure changed the meaning of the sentence.  Click on photos to enlarge them for reading.

We watched a video of the preparation that went in to this expedition.  President Thomas Jefferson gave Merriweather Lewis a detailed description of what he expected of the trip.  He wanted detailed notes on all wildlife, natives, flora, weather... in fact everything that the group would experience during their trip.  Lewis was sent off for schooling in everything from biology to paleontology.  He is the one that suggested Clark as co-leader.

These photos aren't exactly in order but they still give you an idea of happened during Lewis and Clark's expedition.


 This rifle had to be pumped 1500 times to fill the air chamber.   This took about 1/2 hour.  The ball were loaded with an autoloader then the rifle could be fired multiple times without having to load it.

Notice the large butt air chamber.

Another video explained that sometimes the terrain they covered was so harsh that they would have to replace their moccasins every other day. 







































This display about Sacagawea was very interesting.  See next photos for closer views.



















It was interesting to note that it took the expedition 1 year and 7 months to go west and 6 months to go east.    Of course going downstream at the rate of 80 miles a day was much quicker than rowing upstream.













































I missed taking a photo of the section that said that James Audubon was on the boat.







































































Plenty of cottonwoods here.