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Time: 6:22:40 PM
Remote Name: 188.8.131.52
I work as a volunteer at Goldendale Observatory State Park in Goldendale, Washington. We are publicly accessable astronomy observatory geared solely for the public use (no research is conducted here).
Last year, a 20MW size natural gas power plant began to be built about 2 miles up wind of the observatory. While we support this facility in a economically depressed region, we want to minimize possibles problems that the plant's emissions brings.
Our questions are: 1) How will the SOx and NOx aerosol particulates effect the night time view?
2) Is there a chance that the SOx and NOx react with the water vapor from both the plant and the ambient air, convert to a weak acid and pose a problem with the expoused optical surfaces over a period of time (not to exceed five years)?
3) How high and wide will the thermal plume for both the cooling towers and emission stacks be? This assumes of course, that the air is still.
4) About how much of a difference in the local humidty effect this semi-arid climate?
Since Golendale is about 12 miles north of the eastern end of the Columbia River Gorge, the prevailing winds are westly during the summer and easterly to stagnet during the winter.
My hunch is that we need to focus more on local light pollutition, for which we will be contacting the International Dark Sky Association (IDA), however it is a question that was asked to us and my task is to find out.
So I would greatly appericate your collective help on this subject.
Tom Nathe V.P., Friends of the Goldendale Observatory email@example.com