Electricity is generated when the ancient plant material inside of the coal, carbon, is burned. The coal is ground up into a fine powder and is then burned. The heat generated from the coal creates steam which powers a turbine that spins making mechanical energy. The mechanical energy is then transformed into electrical energy, or electricity.
What about electricity generation? How is coal converted to electricity?
Solar panels use things called photovoltaic cells that transform incoming sunlight into electricity instead of heat. Each cell has two layers of silicon called semiconductors. Each one has a positively charged layer and a negatively charged one. These semiconductors abosorb photons from the Sun’s radiation and turns them into direct currental electricity. The energy is then piped through an inverter and then a bi-directional meter, which distributes the electricity to the appliances that need it.
Cool! But coal can’t be our only energy source. What about the solar panels on Jack’s house? How do they work?
Anytime bro! Did you know that the world uses trillions of watts of energy every day? And that number is just going to get bigger. As the population increases, the worlds energy usage does as well. So this means the population growth greatly affects the worlds energy consumption.
Thanks Max, you’ve been such a great help! I had no idea just how important electricity is to our lives. I wonder how many people in the world are using electricity right now?
It’s crazy right? Another thing that affects the worlds energy consumption is the advances we are making in communication technology. Nowadays it is much easier to use things like Skype for business conferences rather than having to travel over the place to get to a meeting. It also brings family and friends who live far away closer together. All of these things use electricity without us realising it.
Wow! I wonder what else has impacted the worlds energy usage?
Let’s see, the advances we are making in new transportation technology is impacting our energy consumption. A lot of the new car models are using a lot more energy to power their touchscreen dashboards and built in gps than the previous models that didn’t have those modern luxuries. Even in public transportation like buses and trains use energy to air condition the insides for the public.
Cool what else?
Even shopping can use energy. With a great chunk of the shopping people do these days being online, people can use a lot of energy without even realising it. Shopping online makes it so much easier to spend money on things you don’t need, so people end up spending a lot more time online, which in turn, uses more energy.
Yes I am sooo getting an A on the assignment! Thanks again bro!