Generating Electricity

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  • Generating Electricity
    • Power stations
      • An energy source is used to heat water. The steam produced drives a turbine that is connected to an electrical generator.
        • Fossil fuels (coal, oil and gas)
        • Nuclear fission of uranium and plutonium
        • Biofuels
    • Fossil fuel power station
      • Advantages; very reliable, produces lots of energy
      • Disadvantages; produces CO2- greenhouse effect (carbon capture) and sulphur dioxide- acid rain
        • Carbon capture; storing carbon underground in empty oil holes
    • Nuclear power station
      • Advantages; no pollution and produces lots of energy
      • Disadvantages; creates radioactive waste and is expensive
    • Renewable energy sources
      • Wind Turbines
        • Weather dependent, visual and noise pollution
      • Water- Hydroelectricity scheme
        • Good reliability, visual pollution, habitats destroyed
      • Tide
        • Used to drive turbines directly
          • Waves
          • Water- Hydroelectricity scheme
            • Good reliability, visual pollution, habitats destroyed
          • Wind Turbines
            • Weather dependent, visual and noise pollution
      • Waves
      • Solar cells
        • low reliability, weather dependent
      • Geothermal- volcanic activity
        • Can only be used in certain areas
    • Small-scale production of electricity may be useful in some areas and for some uses
      • hydroelectricity in remote areas
      • solar cells for roadside signs
    • The National Grid
      • Electricity is distributed from power stations to consumers along the National Grid
      • Step-up transformers; increase voltage and decrease current
        • Less energy is lost as heat to surroundings (large current causes heat)
      • Step-down transformers; decrease votage
        • Makes it safe for homes and appliances
      • Underground or Overground cables
        • Underground= hidden cables, very expensive to install and repair, must be made with special casing to prevent overheating
        • Overground= spoil landscape and unknown health issues

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