Electric Energy Sources
Electric energy is not readily available in nature. And therefore we are in need to generate electric energy from natural sources. Electric energy generation is the conversion of other kinds of energy, mainly primary energy, into electric energy.
Generally, the process of generating electricity goes through several transformations, as there is little primary energy directly convertible into electric energy. The primary sources for the generation of electric energy are listed below,
Coal Solar energy
Oil Wind energy
Natural gas Tidal energy
Nuclear energy Thermal energy
Types of sources available for electric energy
Generally two types of energy sources are available in nature. They are
- Renewable sources
- Non renewable sources
Renewable Energy Sources
Non Renewable Energy Sources
Need for sources for the production of electric energy
Electric energy is not readily available in nature. We need a primary energy in order to get electric energy. Electric energy cannot be created nor destroyed but it can be transferred from one form to another form.
Hence in order to get electric energy some primary energy must be converted to electrical energy. Some of the examples showing how energy sources are used for the production of electric energy is explained below.
Solar energy source
- Solar electric energy is created by using Photovoltaic (PV) technology by converting solar energy into solar electricity from sunlight.
- Photovoltaic systems use sunlight to power ordinary electrical equipment, for example, household appliances, computers and lighting.
- The photovoltaic (PV) process converts free solar energy - the most abundant energy source on the planet - directly into solar power.
- A PV cell consists of two or more thin layers of semi-conducting material, most commonly silicon.
- When the silicon is exposed to light, electrical charges are generated and this can be conducted away by metal contacts as direct current (DC).
- The electrical output from a single cell is small, so multiple cells are connected together and encapsulated (usually behind glass) to form a module (sometimes referred to as a “panel”).
- The PV module is the principle building block of a PV system and any number of modules can be connected together to give the desired electrical output.
- PV equipment has no moving parts and as a result requires minimal maintenance.
- It generates solar electric energy without producing emissions of greenhouse or any other gases, and its operation is virtually silent.
Points to Remember
- Electric energy cannot be created not destroyed.
- Electric energy can transform form one form to another form of energy.
- Hence primary energy sources are needed to produce electric energy.
- Two types of energy sources, renewable and non renewable energy source.
- Since non renewable energy sources are depleting , future electric energy needs can be satistified by renewable energy sources
Other types of Electric energy