What is a Power Station?
stations convert a primary
into electrical energy.
Electrical energy is called a secondary energy source.
Electricity is a very useful form of energy because
it can be used to do so many different things
and it is easily transmitted over long distances.
The primary energy
resources may be non-renewable,
for example fossil fuels or nuclear power,
or they may be renewable, for example
hydroelectric, tidal, wave, wind, solar, geothermal and biomass.
What do Renewable and Non-renewable mean?
Renewable means that the resource can be replaced
in a reasonable amount of time and therefore will not run out.
that there is only a
certain amount of the resource.
Once it is used up, it cannot be replaced.
How does a Power Station Work?
fuels, nuclear power, geothermal
energy and biomass
are all used to boil water to make steam which turns a turbine.
When natural gas is used as the fossil fuel,
some power stations don't boil water to make steam
but directly use the hot burnt gases to turn a turbine.
A turbine has a number
of blades, like the blades of
a windmill, which rotate when a liquid or
gas (steam) is forced through it under pressure.
Large cooling towers condense the steam back into water
which is recycled, reheated and turned back into steam.
turbine is connected to a generator
which produces alternating current electricity.
A bigger generator producing more electricity
uses more primary fuel per second.
This electricity is then put through a step up transformer
and transmitted across the National Grid.
power use falling water to turn
the turbines. Wind power uses modern windmills
(called wind turbines) to turn small generators.
power generates electricity directly from sunlight.
or from the heating effect of the Sun.
The following pages give the advantages
disadvantages of these processes. We can not rely on
just one way of generating electricity. To make sure
that we have enough electricity all the time we need it,
we must use a variety of ways to generate electricity.
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