Classification of Power Plants Based on Energy Sources

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Generating low-cost electricity is becoming more challenging every year and in the meantime, our demand is reaching the sky level. But we have a limited source of energy that we can convert to electricity. Till now the world is using 81% of energy from the source of fossil fuel. This enormous amount of fossil fuel burning creating the biggest threat for the climate and the human race. But without electricity is become impossible for us to lead our daily life.

In this article, I am going to discuss the most common source of energy where we are generating electricity with present technology.

Power Plants Classification of Based on Energy Sources:

Heat (Thermal Power Plant):

Thermal Power Plant is the best example of converting energy to electricity. The thermal power plant is a kind of power plant where we convert thermal energy to electric power. Around the world, we use a steam turbine to the rotating generator and generate electricity.

The procedure is very simple. First water is heat and generates pressurized stream then stream sent to a steam turbine which spins the generator. We use fossil fuel like Coal, Oil, GAS to run this power plant. The nuclear power plant also works with the same principle. Instead of a burner, a nuclear reactor uses to generate heat that produces a large amount of stream. Till now it is the most popular way to generate electricity.

Heat (Geothermal Power Plant):

Geothermal power is the power generated by geothermal energy. It’s a little bit different than a traditional thermal power plant. The source of heat energy comes from deep of the earth you can say earth core. Water is used to generate streams that rotated the turbine and turbine rotated generator. Water becomes stream due to the earth’s core temperature.

Geothermal Power Plant

Geothermal Power Plant

Geothermal electricity generation is currently used in 24 countries while geothermal heating is in use in 70 countries in the world. Very first geothermal power generator on 4 July 1904 in Larderello, Italy. But in 1911 the first commercial geothermal power was built.

Related: Basic Operation of a Power Plant With its Importance

Water (Hydro Power Plant):

A Hydro Power Plant generates electricity by hydropower. The installation of a hydropower plant cost is low. For this reason, 150 countries in this world use this type of power plant. In 2015, 16.6% of world electricity produced by hydropower. Chine generated 920 TWh of electricity just in 2013. Hydropower plant uses water as a fuel.

Hydro Power Plant

Hydro Power Plant

Water used to drop from the height and it passes through a water turbine. The water turbine rotated by the force of water power. The turbine used to connect with the generator prime mover and generator rotated due to turbine rotation. Water use to store by a dam and this type of power plant can be available highest place from sea level. Mountain River is the best place for this kind of plant. This type of power plant is CO2 free because no fossil fuel is used. But it also has some disadvantages to nature.

Ocean Water (Tidal Power Plant):

In 1966 the world’s first operational large-scale tidal power plant was the Rance Tidal Power Station in France. Earth Oceanic Tides use to generate electricity by Tidal Power Plant. A tidal generator converts the energy of the tidal flow into electricity. But the cost of installation for a tidal power plant is very high and the availability of constant power is poor.

Because of lots of factors effect on power generation. In recent times there is some advanced technology developed and this type of power project can produce more power than before. We can expect it will be our next generation reliable power source.

Related: Three Best Sources of Renewable Energy

Wind (Wind Power Plant):

The flow of Air used to generate electricity by Wind Power Plant. When airflow through the wind turbine then it pushes the turbine long blade that rotated the turbine and turbine rotated the generator to generate electricity. Denmark generated 40% of electricity by using wind power in the year of 2015. In 2014, 83 countries in this world used this technology to generate electricity and total global capacity was 369.55 MW electricity.

Gansu Wind Farm in China having a capacity of 7965 MW. Installing a new wind farm is a bit expensive at the present time. Only some of the selected place has in this world where this type of power project can be installing. Air is the fuel for the wind farm and if there is no air then no electricity will be generated. This is the biggest disadvantage of the wind farm.

Sun Light (Solar Power Plant):

Now a day’s solar power is one of the favorite power sources. Solar Powered Car, Cell Phone is getting more popularity day by day. We cannot use direct sunlight to electricity. It needs a solar panel to convert sunlight to electricity. This system called Photovoltaic (PV) technology. Photovoltaic Cell (PV), is a device that converts light into electric current using the photovoltaic effect.

A very first solar cell or photovoltaic cell was constructed by Charles Fritts in the year of 1880. The annual growth of this photovoltaic technology was an average of 40% from 2000 to 2013. Now every country in this world has some serious issue for the increasing oil price. Everyone is looking for an alternative source of electricity where solar power came with the ultimate solution. If you want you can power your entire house by solar power generated electricity.

A lot of remote places are present where no electricity is available and people from that place are installing the solar panel and they are connecting with each other’s by small solar power grid and sharing their generated electricity with each other. But installing a PV panel is relatively more expensive for a person and it also expensive for a country. This type of power plant needs more space to install and it is one of the biggest disadvantages.

In this article, I tried to project the most common source of energy where we can get much power in recent times. I believe in the future we can get more sources of energy where we can get an efficient and reliable supply of electricity. But no matter what, we have to save energy in our daily life that we waste every day without thinking about how much effort, time and money need to install those types of power plants.

Related: Power Plant Classification Based on Fuel Type, Load and Place

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