North Central hosted Cardinal Generating Station tour to local seventh-grade students
North Central Electric Cooperative hosted 47 seventh grade students on a tour of the Cardinal Generating Station to show how a coal plant generates the electricity they use in their everyday lives.
Students and chaperones from Seneca East, Buckeye Central, and St. Bernard schools traveled September 13 to Brilliant, Ohio in southeastern Ohio along the Ohio River. The students participate in the cooperative funded educational program called Be E3 (Energy, Efficiency, and Education) Smart program.
The generating plant operated by Buckeye Power, the wholesale power supplier to North Central and 23 other Ohio electric cooperatives, houses two generators that produce electricity at 23,000 to 26,000 volts. Transformers outside the plant step the voltage up to 138,000 volts and 345,000 volts so that it can be transmitted efficiently to customers at great distances.
The Be E3 Smart students also learned of the environmental controls such as selective catalytic reduction (SCR) systems and electrostatic precipitators, which remove 99 percent of all fly ash. This ash, waste for the generating plant, can be marketed for use in other industries. These environmental controls reduce toxic emissions and have been installed to deliver the cleanest possible electricity to their homes. Over the past 15 years, Buckeye Power and the Ohio electric cooperatives have invested $1.2 billion in environmental controls at its coal plants that supply power to its 394,000 member-consumers. Today, Buckeye Power’s generating facilities are considered among the cleanest coal-burning power plants of their kind in the world.
While natural gas, solar and wind have been become more prevalent, in Ohio 58 percent of the state’s electricity is generated with coal.
The Be E3 Smart program teaches students how energy is produced and used. The students, through this program, also learn easy ways to conserve energy and increase energy efficiency in their homes.