Re: Pyrmont CSR

Kevin Sewell

At the risk of getting a bit OT ...

Does anybody know what else CO2 could be an ingredient in, because I don't think CO2 went out the CSRC gate in liquid or solid form, but perhaps went into something else that they made there. I am BY NO MEANS a chemist so I have absolutely NO idea what these chemicals are but ISTR they made acetaldehyde, something or other anhydride (acid anhydride perhaps) acetic acid, the stuff that takes nail polish off, zinc and aluminium sterates, and others I now don't recall. Perhaps CO2 goes into one of these.
Again it was rather a long time ago and I was only a kid, but I think I recall them doing research work on synthetic sugars as well, which might seem a bit odd for a sugar company. I remember dad bringing home (probably pint) bottles of liquid sugar, but I don't think it was around for long, or maybe they stopped allowing employees to take it home.
I did a school holidays job working down in the sterates plant as a 14y.o. Hardest bloody physical work I have ever done!!!!!
And now it's all gone - Pyrmont, Lane Cove, Rhodes, and Mayfield West in Newcastle. Great days.

On Sun, 4 Mar 2018 at 6:31 PM, Bob Mcleod bobmcleod45@... [LRRSA] <LRRSA@...> wrote:

      Indeed Kevin, My Dad reports workmen who spent time in the empty fermenting vats becoming somewhat merry. They also used beryllium copper tools, to prevent any chance of a spark igniting the vapour. The sugar dust was also highly explosive, a spark from a conveyor, at one time blew out all the windows of the warehouse, into the harbour.
  I rather wonder if the molasses loaded on rail at Condong, went to Pyrmont at all. There were many other users of it. Stock food makers use a lot. 

From: "Kevin Sewell kevinrsewell@... [LRRSA]" <LRRSA@...>
To: LRRSA@...
Sent: Sunday, 4 March 2018, 15:49
Subject: Re: [LRRSA] Pyrmont CSR


On Sun, Mar 4, 2018 at 2:42 PM, Bob Mcleod wrote:
The molasses was largely used for distilling alcohol, and the resulting CO2 gas was compressed, also converted to dry ice. Pyrmont was a huge industrial complex, with a large range of by-products, and an engineering facility equal to anything in Australia.

BINGO!!! - then thats why the molasses went to CSRC at Lane Cove ... CSRC made industrial quantities of pure alcohol. It was shipped out by the stainless steel semitrailer tanker load. 
I vaguely recall an incident probably about 1970, where workmen had to climb inside the tanker to wash it out for the next load, and were overcome by the fumes and became unconcious and died before they could be got out. I suppose alcoholic poisoning. The tank had not been fully drained after the previous load and there was still a small amount of pure alcohol in the tank. A somewhat different approach to WHS in those days.

Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from bad judgement.

Don't just answer the question, question the answer.

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