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What Happens When Electricity Is Produced?

In the 21st century, electricity is a vital part of life that we take for granted. However, electricity is relatively new, just as it was widely used a hundred years ago.

Today, interest in various forms of energy production is growing, with some experts predicting that non-renewable traditional sources will become extinct within the next 100 years. Here is a quick overview of the various ways electricity is produced in 2012.

Energy production by fossil fuels

The main source of energy today is the burning of fossil fuels, such as coal, gas and oil. These materials need to be mined, drilled or excavated from the ground and are called ‘fossil fuels’ because they contain fossils of ancient plants and animals. Although oil and gas can be burned directly, coal needs to be crushed and burned to function properly.

The process of generating electricity begins with heating one of these fuels (their popularity varies from country to country). As fossil fuels burn, they heat the water, forming steam. The steamer then propelled the generators into the power station. As the turbines rotate, they transmit electricity through a piece of wire, which is connected to a series of transformers. As the current travels through transformers, its voltage is gradually reduced and eventually enters homes and commercial buildings through a service box.

Generating energy from renewable sources

Although fossil fuels remain the main source of electricity, renewable resources such as tidal, nuclear and geothermal energy are slowly growing. One well-known source of renewable energy is wind power. In order to harness wind power, wind turbines must be built. Like windmills, wind turbines have three or four blades and can take the form of large country-filled buildings (‘wind farms’) or smaller models that sit on top of home buildings. When the warm air rises, more air rushes in to fill the remaining gaps. This creates the atmosphere we call air. When the wind blows the blade of the wind turbine propeller, it begins to move. This movement turns the generator, which generates electricity.

Solar energy is another form of renewable energy. Using solar energy requires the installation of photovoltaic cells (‘PV’), which convert light into electricity directly. PV panels may be costly and unreliable for solar energy at all but very hot weather means they are still unable to provide the complete energy conversion caused by fossil fuels. However, they are useful for heating certain aspects of the house – for example, a boiler or a furnace.

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