Basic electrical energy
Energy means everything. Just imagine yourself with lots of energy. How many things you can do? Similarly, if you are without energy you won’t be able to do anything. The backbone of development is energy. Our modern world is building continuously with the help of energy.
There are many variants of energy such as kinetic energy, static energy, thermal energy, e mechanical energy, etc. But the most useful one is electrical energy. Also as Electrical Engineers, we will focus on electrical energy. However please remember all energies are convertible from one form to another.
What are the major advantages of electrical energy?
- Versatility: Electricity can be used for a wide range of purposes, including powering appliances, lighting, transportation, and industrial processes.
- Efficiency: Electric devices are generally more efficient than their non-electric counterparts, meaning they use less energy to do the same job.
- Cleanliness: Electricity does not produce any direct emissions at the point of use, which makes it a cleaner source of energy than fossil fuels.
- Transportability: Electricity can be easily transported over long distances through transmission and distribution networks.
- Renewable: Electricity can be generated from a variety of renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind, and hydropower.
Here are some specific examples of the advantages of electrical energy:
- Electric vehicles: Electric vehicles are more efficient and produce fewer emissions than gasoline-powered vehicles.
- Electric heat pumps: Electric heat pumps are more efficient than traditional heating and cooling systems, such as furnaces and air conditioners.
- Induction cooktops: Induction cooktops are more efficient and safer than traditional gas or electric cooktops.
- LED light bulbs: LED light bulbs are more efficient and last longer than traditional incandescent or fluorescent light bulbs.
Why electrical energy is so important?
We need energy in different forms some time for cooling, some time for heating, as light, as motion. Now I just rewind your basic and you can find that electrical energy can be converted to all of them. This is the main advantage of electrical energy. So let us list the advantages of electrical energy.
1. Environment-friendly: Electrical energy is clean and environment-friendly. Pollutes the atmosphere very less. It does not produce toxic gases.
2. Ease of transmission distribution and control: You can transfer electrical energy over several thousand kilometers with the help of a conductor. You can distribute it as you want also you can control the energy by only switching on or off a circuit.
3. Easily convertible: Electrical energy can be converted to rotational energy (motor), photon energy (light), heat energy (heater or air conditioner), sound energy (speaker), etc. with ease. No other form of energy is such easily convertible.
Source of electrical energy!!!! No no, we should say the conversion of other energy into electrical energy.
We know that energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only transform from one form to another.
So there are many kinds of preliminary sources of energy from where electrical energy can be obtained.
The major sources and forms of energy are
1. Fuel (solid/liquid/gas): Solid or coal, liquid or oil, or fuel gas have calorific values which release heat when burnt. Now, this heat is used to convert water into steam. This steam is thrown into the steam turbine, so heat energy is converted to kinetic energy. The steam turbine is coupled with the alternator. The alternator when rotates generates electrical energy. Liquid fuel is used in an internal combustion engine which rotates and the generator connected to it generates electrical energy. Gas is often used in a gas turbine which generates electrical energy as a generator connected to it.
2. Water: Water when stored at a high level or its flow is restricted by the dam, stores static energy. So if it is released through a pipe the energy is released as kinetic energy. Now, this water is fall on the water turbine. The Kinetic linear energy is then converted into rotational energy. So the water turbine rotates and as the alternator is coupled with the turbine so the alternator also starts rotating and generates electrical energy.
3. The Sun: The Sun gives us heat energy and photo or light energy. Both can be converted to electrical energy. From light energy emitted by the sun, electrical energy can be obtained by using solar photovoltaic cell commonly known as solar panel, which converts light energy to electrical energy. Also, the heat energy is collected via a reflector and used to heat up the water which eventually converts into steam and operates the steam turbo generator.
4. Wind: In coastal areas, wind has high kinetic energy so wind turbines are installed in coastal areas. With these wind turbine often known as windmill a generator is coupled inside it. So when the wind blows the turbine it starts rotating and the generator located inside also starts rotating and it generates electricity.
4. Nuclear: Nuclear energy is another kind of source from which we can extract electrical energy. There are several radioactive materials that participate in fission reactions and generate heat. This heat, coming out of nuclear energy can convert water into steam. This steam is thrown into the turbine, the turbine rotates, and the alternator coupled with the turbine also rotates. So electricity is generated.
5. Chemical energy: Inside the battery due to a chemical reaction energy is generated.
These are the major sources of energy. Apart from the above geothermal energy, tidal energy, etc. are also used for electrical energy generation.