Formed by the Niagara River, which drains Lake Erie into Lake Ontario, the combined falls have the highest flow rate of any waterfall in North America that has a vertical drop of more than 50 m (160 ft). During peak daytime tourist hours, more than 168,000 m3 (5.9 million cu ft) of water goes over the crest of the falls every minute. Horseshoe Falls is the most powerful waterfall in North America, as measured by flow rate. Niagara Falls is famed for its beauty and is a valuable source of hydroelectric power. Balancing recreational, commercial, and industrial uses has been a challenge for the stewards of the falls since the 19th century.
In 2013, New York State began an effort to renovate Three Sisters Islands located south of Goat Island. Funds were used from the re-licensing of the New York Power Authority hydroelectric plant downriver in Lewiston, New York, to rebuild walking paths on the Three Sisters Islands and to plant native vegetation on the islands. The state also renovated the area around Prospect Point at the brink of American Falls in the state park.
After the First World War, tourism boomed as automobiles made getting to the falls much easier. The story of Niagara Falls in the 20th century is largely that of efforts to harness the energy of the falls for hydroelectric power, and to control the development on both sides that threaten the area's natural beauty. Before the late 20th century, the northeastern end of Horseshoe Falls was in the United States, flowing around the Terrapin Rocks, which were once connected to Goat Island by a series of bridges. In 1955, the area between the rocks and Goat Island was filled in, creating Terrapin Point. In the early 1980s, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers filled in more land and built diversion dams and retaining walls to force the water away from Terrapin Point. Altogether, 400 ft (120 m) of Horseshoe Falls were eliminated, including 100 ft (30 m) on the Canadian side. According to author Ginger Strand, the Horseshoe Falls is now entirely in Canada. Other sources say "most of" Horseshoe Falls is in Canada.
The enormous energy of Niagara Falls has long been recognized as a potential source of power. The first known effort to harness the waters was in 1750, when Daniel Joncaire built a small canal above the falls to power his sawmill. Augustus and Peter Porter purchased this area and all of American Falls in 1805 from the New York state government, and enlarged the original canal to provide hydraulic power for their gristmill and tannery. In 1853, the Niagara Falls Hydraulic Power and Mining Company was chartered, which eventually constructed the canals that would be used to generate electricity. In 1881, under the leadership of Jacob F. Schoellkopf, the Niagara River's first hydroelectric generating station was built. The water fell 86 feet (26 m) and generated direct current electricity, which ran the machinery of local mills and lit up some of the village streets.
The Niagara Falls Power Company, a descendant of Schoellkopf's firm, formed the Cataract Company headed by Edward Dean Adams, with the intent of expanding Niagara Falls' power capacity. In 1890, a five-member International Niagara Commission headed by Sir William Thomson among other distinguished scientists deliberated on the expansion of Niagara hydroelectric capacity based on seventeen proposals but could not select any as the best combined project for hydraulic development and distribution. In 1893, Westinghouse Electric (which had built the smaller-scale Ames Hydroelectric Generating Plant near Ophir, Colorado, two years earlier) was hired to design a system to generate alternating current on Niagara Falls, and three years after that a large-scale AC power system was created (activated on August 26, 1895). The Adams Power Plant Transformer House remains as a landmark of the original system.
Other hydropower plants were being built along the Niagara River. But in 1956, disaster struck when the region's largest hydropower station was partially destroyed in a landslide. This drastically reduced power production and put tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs at stake. In 1957, Congress passed the Niagara Redevelopment Act, which granted the New York Power Authority the right to fully develop the United States' share of the Niagara River's hydroelectric potential.
In 1961, when the Niagara Falls hydroelectric project went online, it was the largest hydropower facility in the Western world. Today, Niagara is still the largest electricity producer in New York state, with a generating capacity of 2.4 GW. Up to 1,420 cubic metres (380,000 US gal) of water per second is diverted from the Niagara River through conduits under the city of Niagara Falls to the Lewiston and Robert Moses power plants. Currently between 50% and 75% of the Niagara River's flow is diverted via four huge tunnels that arise far upstream from the waterfalls. The water then passes through hydroelectric turbines that supply power to nearby areas of Canada and the United States before returning to the river well past the falls. When electrical demand is low, the Lewiston units can operate as pumps to transport water from the lower bay back up to the plant's reservoir, allowing this water to be used again during the daytime when electricity use peaks. During peak electrical demand, the same Lewiston pumps are reversed and become generators.
In August 2005, Ontario Power Generation, which is responsible for the Sir Adam Beck stations, started a major civil engineering project, called the Niagara Tunnel Project, to increase power production by building a new 12.7-metre (42 ft) diameter, 10.2-kilometre-long (6.3 mi) water diversion tunnel. It was officially placed into service in March 2013, helping to increase the generating complex's nameplate capacity by 150 megawatts. It did so by tapping water from farther up the Niagara River than was possible with the preexisting arrangement. The tunnel provided new hydroelectricity for approximately 160,000 homes.
Ships can bypass Niagara Falls by means of the Welland Canal, which was improved and incorporated into the Saint Lawrence Seaway in the mid-1950s. While the seaway diverted water traffic from nearby Buffalo and led to the demise of its steel and grain mills, other industries in the Niagara River valley flourished with the help of the electric power produced by the river. However, since the 1970s the region has declined economically.
Composer Ferde Grofé was commissioned by the Niagara Falls Power Generation project in 1960 to compose the Niagara Falls Suite in honor of the completion of the first stage of hydroelectric work at the falls. In 1997, composer Michael Daugherty composed Niagara Falls, a piece for concert band inspired by the falls.
The review deals with the state of the art and prospects for using hydrogen in various branches of the world economy: in industry (oil-refining, chemical, steel-casting, cement), on transport (road, railway, maritime, aviation), and in production and distribution of the electric and thermal power. Using hydrogen is one of efficient directions of the economy decarbonization. The possibility and efficiency of using hydrogen, ammonia, methanol, and synthetic kerosene as a fuel for internal combustion engines and gas turbines in various kinds of vehicles and in production of the electric and thermal power are evaluated. The need for long-term hydrogen storage for reducing the influence exerted on the operation of electric networks by seasonal variations in the electric power production from renewable sources is demonstrated, and the hydrogen storage methods are considered. The feasibility of various procedures for utilizing CO2 formed in the course of hydrogen production by steam methane conversion at industrial enterprises using hydrogen for their own needs are analyzed.
The above-considered directions of reducing the CO2 emissions in the cement industry do not alter the principles of the clinker production by thermal decomposition of limestone. A possible alternative to the traditional technology of the clinker production is the electrochemical method being developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology . A pH gradient is created in the electrochemical reactor as a result of water electrolysis. In the process, milled CaCO3 undergoes decarboxylation at low pH at the anode, and solid calcium hydroxide Ca(OH)2 precipitates at high pH at the cathode. When heated with silicon dioxide (SiO2), it forms alite, one of the main components of Portland cement. Simultaneously with solid reaction products, concentrated streams of high-purity gases arise in the reactor: a mixture of O2 and CO2 at the anode and H2 at the cathode. The gases formed can be efficiently used for various operations at the plant, e.g., for the production of electric power using hydrogen fuel cells, or can be sold on the market. Along with process innovations, the capture and utilization of CO2 will play an important role in reduction of the CO2 emissions from cement enterprises. According to the IEA forecast , active progress in this field will start after 2030, and by 2070 80% of cement plants will be equipped with CO2-capturing installations, which will ensure 60% of the total reduction of the carbon dioxide emissions from cement enterprises.
The world transport sector generates 24% of the global CO2 emissions as a result of gasoline and diesel fuel combustion; in 2020, they amounted to 7.2 bln t. The following target levels for reducing the emissions from vehicles are indicated in the roadmap of the development of the world power engineering to reach the carbon neutrality by 2050: 5.7 bln t in 2030, 2.7 bln t in 2040, and 0.7 bln t in 2050. To this end, it is necessary to considerably change the structure of power sources used by vehicles. Today more than 90% of the required energy is obtained from organic fuel. According to the forecasts, by 2040 the share of this power source will decrease by a factor of almost 2, to 50%, and by 2050 it will become as low as 10%. The role of the electric power and alternative kinds of fuel will increase simultaneously. By 2050, the share of the electric power, hydrogen fuel, and biofuel will reach 45, 30, and 15%, respectively . Hydrogen can be used as a fuel for vehicles in different forms: as alternative kind of fuel for internal combustion engines, after conversion to methanol and ammonia, and for electric power generation by fuel cells. The use of hydrogen for various kinds of vehicles has specific features determined by technological and economic factors. 781b155fdc