Generating Electricity


Fossil Fuel Power Station

This is where coal, oil and gases are burnt

Uranium or platonium are used as fuels in a nuclear power station in a process called binary fission

1 of 5

Renewable energy

Renewable energy sources, like wind, water, tidal, solar etc. will never run out

Wind power:

  • Consists of an electricity generator at the top of a narrow tower
  • The force of the wind drives the turbine's blades around
  • The power generates increases as the wind speed increases

Wave power:

  • The waves move a floating generator up and down
  • This motion turns the generator so it generates electricity
  • A cable between the generator and the shore delivers the energy

Tidal power:

  • Traps water from each high tide behind a barrage
  • The water is then released into the sea through turbines
  • The turbines drive generators in the barrage
2 of 5

Renewable Energy ( Part 2 )

Solar power:

  • Convert less than 10 % of what they absob into power
  • The sunlight heats water that flows directly through the tower
  • Very expensive but costs nothing to run

Geothermal power:

  • Energy is released by radioactive substances below the Earth
  • Water is pumped down to produce steam
  • The steam produced drives electricity turbines at ground level
3 of 5

The National Grid

The National Grid: The network of cables that cover the whole of Britain, that delivers electricity to homes everywhere:

  • Power can be generated anywhere and transported anywhere
  • To transport a large amount of power, you either need a high voltage or a high current
  • With a high current, a lot of energy is lost through heat when the energy is being transported
  • It's much cheaper to up the voltage and keep the voltage low

Without transformers:

  • Bulb (House) A is much brighter than Bulb (House) 
  • Most of the energy is used up transporting the power from the station to Bulb B
4 of 5

Power Transformers

Power = Voltage x Current

  • If we decrease the current, we must increase the voltage
  • We can use a step up/down transformer to help with this
  • The step up transformer increases the voltage at one end, for efficient transfer
  • The step down transformer decreases the voltage so it is at a safe, useable level to be delivered to the consumer
  • Bulb (House) A and B have the same brightness
5 of 5


No comments have yet been made

Similar Physics resources:

See all Physics resources »See all Generating Electricity resources »