Apr. 04, 1971 - SMOG SMASHER. Plumes of warm, moist air - rising from this laboratory model of a proposed new cooling tower - are being studied by General Electric Research and Development Center engineers as a means of ventilating the smog-laden skies over the nation's large cities. The GE studies show that a massive plume - rising slowly from the 600 foot wide mouth of a low silhouette cooling tower - would pass through atmospheric inversions, a condition that occurs when a layer of warm pins down a layer of cool air

- Image ID: E0YRE6
Keystone Press / Alamy Stock Photo
Image ID: E0YRE6
Apr. 04, 1971 - SMOG SMASHER. Plumes of warm, moist air - rising from this laboratory model of a proposed new cooling tower - are being studied by General Electric Research and Development Center engineers as a means of ventilating the smog-laden skies over the nation's large cities. The GE studies show that a massive plume - rising slowly from the 600 foot wide mouth of a low silhouette cooling tower - would pass through atmospheric inversions, a condition that occurs when a layer of warm pins down a layer of cool air. The latter, if trapped over an urban area, becomes increasingly polluted and smog-laden. In addition to ventilating the air over metropolitan areas, the cooling tower also would perform its basic function - permitting electric power stations to discharge thermal exhaust thousands of feet into the atmosphere - effectively and acceptably. GE Engineer Dale H. Brown is shown working with a model of the proposed 60-foot-high structure in an environmental chamber in which heat lamps are used to create a man-made inversion layer. During inversions, plumes from conventional cooling towers usually reach an altitude of only a few hundred feet. (Credit Image: Keystone Pictures USA/ZUMAPRESS)