November 2009

Professor Studies Tennessee Ash Spill

(The Appalachian 11-12-2009) Geology professor Roy C. Sidle has received approximately $80,000 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to conduct research evaluating the downstream impact of the coal fly ash spill in Kingston, Tenn. An earth dike at Tennessee Valley Authority’s Kingston power plant that held sediment for over 50 years gave way Dec. 22, releasing roughly 1.1 billion gallons of coal fly ash slurry into the Emory River. The volume of the spill characterizes it as the largest in United States history.

Putting Green Technology Into Bricks

(Aggregate 11-4-09) Amid buzz about algae biofuel and electric cars, some start-ups hope to use "green" technology to reinvent more mundane products like bricks and cement. CalStar Products Inc. plans to open a factory next month to make bricks from fly ash, a byproduct of coal burning. It claims to use roughly 85% less energy than traditional clay brick manufacturing, with an equivalent reduction in carbon-dioxide emissions.