Energy and its transformations (Non-conventional electric power plants (4…
Energy and its transformations
Energy sources are natural resources from which we obtain different forms of energy that can be transformed for a specific use
By use in each country
By environmental impact
By availability in nature and capacity for regeneration
is the most widely used form of energy in industnalised socieues for two reasons
It can be easily transformed
it can be transported long distance
2.1. Electric power plants
How an electric power plant works
Electncal power plants use an external source of energy to produce electncity .To do this, they rely on a turbine-alternator system.
2.2. Transport and distribution of electrical energy
Electncity cannot be stored; therefore, it must be transported to
consumption centres This transport involves several processes
Conventional electric power plants
3.1. Nuclear power plants
nuclear fission reactor that produr.es the
pressunsed steam needed to move the turbme rotor
Uranium is the main fuel used.
3.2 Fossil fuel thermal power plants
water is heated in a boiler by the heat generated from the combustion of a fossil fuel, usually natural gas or coal
Combined cycle power plant
Combined cycle power plant uses air and gas, and a conventional thermal cycle Dunng the first cycle, a gas turbine is used that includes a compressor.
The combustable ggases are transportated to a boiler, where they transefer their energy to the water during the second cycle
3.3. Hydroelectric power plants
energy provided by the height of the stored water in a dam, converting it into kinetic energy.
Gravity-driven hydraulic power plants
Pump-dniven hydraulic power plants
Non-conventional electric power plants
The main disadvantage of these power plants is that they generate much less energy, since they use diffuse energy sources
The ir advantages are that they contaminate much less than
conventional power plants, they use renewable sources and they reduce the energy dependence of petroleum and natural gas.
4.1. Wind power plants and wind farms
Wind farms are a clean form of generating electnmty However, theycan only be instafled in plat.es with appropnate wind conditions
4.2. Solar power plants
the heat generated by solar adiation produces steam that is used to move the rotor in the generator
especial mirrors, called heliostats,
Photovoltaic power plant
solar radiation is transformed directly into electncity by panels of photovoltaic cells.
5.2. Environmental impacts
Fi nal energy use
Extraction of natural resources
To reduce the waste generated by thermal power plants,
Waste from nuclear power plants is stored in drums with thick
~ide~ that do not let the nuclear radiation escape
5.1. Environmental impact assessment
it's mandatory to carry out an environmental impact assessment
to find out what changes it would provoke in the environment