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MTAA-RR » news » twhid » steam pipe explosion:

Jul 19, 2007

Steam pipe explosion

posted at 14:16 GMT by T.Whid in /news/twhid

If you’re like me you’re wondering why there are steam pipes running under New York City. As always, the tubes have all the answers.

I found this:
Some 30 billion pounds of steam every year flow beneath the streets of Manhattan from the Battery to 96th Street. While it is unknown to most New Yorkers, Con Edison’s subterranean steam system is the biggest steam district in the world. There are 7 plants in NYC — five in Manhattan and one each in Queens and Brooklyn. On a cold winter day, nearly 10 million pounds of steam at 350 degrees Fahrenheit flow each hour through 105 miles of underground mains. Steam is efficient and cost effective for high-rise buildings and most of it is used for heating and cooling.

The city’s infrastructure is old, with much of it being built 50 to 100 years ago. Just maintaining this system, which cracks and breaks every day, is a monumental task.

(Check out Coned’s info here and here too.)

Pretty straightforward, except — what? Cooling!? How the hell does steam cool a building? I can’t find any info so I suppose it will remain a mystery… permanent link to this post

MTAA-RR » news » twhid » steam pipe explosion

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