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Energy For A New World: Embrace For Change

EMBRACE FOR CHANGE

Alternative Energy Sources

Alternative sources of energy are also known as renewable energy sources. Alternative energy sources are generated from natural resources like wind, rain, tides, sunlight, etc which can be naturally replenished.

Some examples of alternative energy sources are:
• Solar power
• Wind power
• Biomass
• Biofuel
• Tidal power
• Wave power
• Geothermal, etc

alternative energy, biofuel, experiment

Photo by stevepb on Pixabay

Solar energy:

Solar power and solar energy are mostly used synonymously. Generally, the term solar power is used to refer to the electricity that is generated from the Sun. Solar energy technologies can be used for day-lighting, hot water, active and passive solar buildings, for cooking, etc It can be used for various needs but mainly solar energy is used for generating electricity.

Approximately 174 petawatts of solar radiation at the upper atmosphere are received by the Earth. And approximately 30% is reflected back to space. The rest is absorbed by oceans, landmasses, and clouds. Solar thermal technologies can be used for space heating, water heating, heat-generating, and space cooling. To heat water solar hot water systems are used. In geographically low latitudes 60-70 % of the domestic hot water can be provided by solar heating systems. The two most common types of solar hot water systems are glazed flat plate collectors and evacuated tube collectors. In the US, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems total to 30 % of the energy used in commercial buildings and 50 % in residential buildings. For utilizing solar energy, a solar chimney is also used which is a passive solar ventilation system comprised of a vertical shaft which is connecting the interior and exterior of a building. Solar energy is also used for making saline or brackish water potable and this is called solar distillation.

Wind energy:

Wind energy is synonymously used with wind power. Converting wind energy into some useful form such as electricity is known as Wind Power. Wind produces just 1 % of electricity in the world, this rate is ever increasing. Europe is ahead compared to other continents in the development of offshore wind power turbines. Europe has shallow water in the North Sea and the Baltic sea due to which wind turbines can be placed there.

There are two types of wind turbines separated by the axis in which they rotate. They are:
– Horizontal-axis wind turbines
– Vertical-axis wind turbines

Since wind speed is not constant, wind farms’ annual energy production cannot be calculated exactly. We could estimate but it depends on nature. There is also a danger to birds flying around wind turbines. Some advantages of wind power are that it requires no fuel for its operation and has no emission compared to electricity production.

Biomass:

Biomass is also a renewable energy source and it means any living or recently dead biological material that can be used as fuel or also for industrial production. In other words, biomass means plant matter grown to generate electricity or produce Biofuel. Biodegradable wastes are also included in biomass. The largest biomass power plant is in North America named New Hope Power Partnership.

Biofuel:

Biofuel is obtained from liquid, solid or gaseous fuel got from recently dead biological material. Biofuels are produced from any carbon source. Biofuels are mostly used for heating homes, cooking stoves, etc

Tidal power:

Tidal power is also called as tidal energy. Tidal power means the power we get from the energy of tides and then converting it to electricity or something other. Tidal power is not widely used in the world but it can be very useful to us.

Wave power:

Wave power is the power we get from the transport of energy by ocean surface waves and then utilizing this energy for some good work. Wave power and tidal power are two different sources of power.

Geothermal:

The energy which is generated from the heat stored in the Earth is called geothermal energy. It also means the collection of absorbed heat got from underground. But today also geothermal power supplies are less than 1 % in the World. Geothermal power can be available 24 hours a day. The sources of geothermal are hot water, shallow ground, and even hot molten rock called magma. Deep wells are constructed in underground reservoirs for taping steam and hot water and then they can be used in a variety of applications.

8 Quick Statements About Clean, Green, Renewable Power

Wind/Solar Power Explained

(what you need to know about powering your home with alternative energy)

#1 Why pay for electricity when you can produce your own? Wind, solar, or both.

#2 Yes, it costs a little bit of money to set up, but then it’s free.

#3 No, maintenance is not costly at all.

#4 State and local regulations will not change. Residential micro-power plants won’t be regulated and taxed.

#5 Yes, you can sell excess power back to the grid. The electric companies can set it up for you.

#6 You can sell your unused electricity to your neighbors or local businesses.

#7 Set-up is not difficult. More like a fun do-it-yourself project.

#8 No, you can’t drive your car using this energy, but you can power your home.

architecture, solar, solar panels

Photo by ecosolarceo on Pixabay

Recent Stuff About Alternative Energy

Photovoltaic cells

A photovoltaic cell is also known as solar cells. The main aim of a photovoltaic cell is that it converts solar energy of the Sun to electrical energy by the photovoltaic effect. Photovoltaic is the field of research and technology related to solar cells. Solar cells are often connected with one another to obtain the desired result.

Photovoltaic modules mostly have a thin sheet of glass on the front side, allowing light to pass and protecting semiconductor wafers from rain, dust, etc. Connecting cells in parallel will help give us higher current. To obtain the desired result both series and parallel can also be used.

Renewable Energy

Renewable energy is the energy which is generated by using natural resources like Sunlight, air, tides, etc which can be naturally replenished. Some examples of renewable energy are biofuels, biomass, Geothermal, Hydropower, Tidal power, Solar power, Wave power, Wind power, etc.

In the year 2006, about 18% of global final energy consumption came from renewable energy. Renewable energy projects are suited for both large scale industries and for small off-grid applications in rural and remote areas. Kenya has the highest ownership of solar power systems sold per year with a figure of 30,000.

Residential Wind Turbines

The process of converting wind energy into some useful form such as electricity is known as Wind Power. A wind turbine is a rotating machine and it converts the kinetic energy of wind to mechanical energy. If this mechanical energy is directly used by machine-like pumps or for grinding, this machine is called windmill. But, if this mechanical energy is directly converted to electricity, then the machine is known as a wind turbine.

Residential Wind Turbines are the wind turbines that are used in homes and in residential areas. Before placing a wind turbine on your home you have to first consider wind speed in that area, wind speed should be at an average of at least 10 miles per hour.

Due to the biological breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen, biogas is obtained. Biogas is a type of Biofuel.

Biogas

Biogas is mainly produced by fermentation of biodegradable materials such as manure, cow dung, biomass, sewage, municipal waste, green waste, etc. Biogas mainly consists of carbon dioxide and methane. Another type of biogas is wood gas, created by gasification of wood or some other biomass. This type of biogas contains hydrogen, carbon monoxide, nitrogen, with a small amount of methane.

Solar

Solar energy is a form of renewable energy. Renewable energy is the energy which is generated by the use of natural resources which are naturally replenished. Humans have used solar energy from ancient times, to satisfy their various needs. A sunray emitted from the Sun takes 9 minutes to reach the Earth.

Solar energy technologies can provide electricity generation by photovoltaic means, drinking water via disinfection and distillation, space heating and cooling in active and passive solar buildings, daylighting, hot water, and thermal energy for cooking.

Wind

There are many ways to harness the power of the wind. The wind is used to grind corn or grain. It is also used to grind wheat and make flour. Farmers in remote areas and rural areas use wind energy to draw groundwater from a reservoir, lake, well, or any other water source. Big windmills have also been installed to provide basic services for the entire village to draw water for irrigation or for drinking water, etc.

Wind energy is mostly used to generate electricity. It is also possible to store the electricity in batteries. You can even use the batteries at a later stage, whenever you feel the need for it.

Geothermal

Geothermal power means the energy generated from the heat which is stored in the Earth. It’s a collection of heat got from underground. The largest geothermal power plants are located at “The Geysers”, in California, United States. Philippines and Iceland are the only countries to generate 15-20 % of their power from geothermal plants.

In 2008 also, geothermal power supplies less than 1% of the World’s energy. By referring to this figure we can say that geothermal power is used very less in the World. Geothermal power can be got from shallow ground to hot water and rock which are several miles below the Earth’s surface. It may even get further to the extremely hot rock called magma. To tap steam and extremely hot water, wells over a mile deep can be drilled into underground reservoirs and can be useful for a variety of purposes. Geothermal power is available 24 hours a day and average availability of 90% above.

Hydro Power

Hydropower is the power we get from the force of moving water. Other names of hydropower are hydraulic power and water power.

The largest use of hydropower is for the creation of hydroelectricity. Hydroelectricity is considered to be low-cost electricity and can be used at long distances also. Hydroelectricity is generated by the use of gravitational force of falling or flowing water. Worldwide 19 % of the world’s electricity is generated from hydroelectricity. This accounts for over 63 % of renewable electricity in the world.

Biomass

Biomass is also about renewable energy. It refers to dead biological material which can be used as fuel or for industrial production. It also means plant matter grown to generate electricity. Biomass also includes biodegradable wastes that can be burnt as fuel.

When the garbage is decomposed, the methane which is produced by it is captured in pipes and then burned to produce electricity. Biomass is available abundant on Earth.

We can grow industrial biomass from numerous types of plants which include hemp, miscanthus, switchgrass, corn, sugarcane, willow, sorghum, and from a variety of tree species like palm oil and eucalyptus.

Residential Solar Power

Solar panels that are used in residential areas are known as residential solar panels. Residential solar panels are becoming more and more popular as the search for alternative or renewable sources expand more and more. Gas prices and electricity charges are going up and up and therefore to save we should go green. Another reason for going green is that solar power systems are becoming more and more affordable.

The technology for photovoltaic panels is improving and prices also increase sometimes. Therefore the government sometimes offers incentives and helps us in buying solar power systems.

Setting up our own residential solar panels is easy and we can thereby help in saving the environment.

Wind Turbines

We can use magnet DC motors as generators. Permanent magnet DC motors work as generators but they aren’t designed to be generators. When we use them as generators motors must be driven faster than their rated speed. We want a motor that will give us more than 12 volts. So we can use a motor of 325 rpm which generates 30 volts. If you could shop for Ametek motor then it’s good.

Now its time to choose correct blades. Use a 6-inch pipe which is 24 inches long. Now cut the other 3 blades off and use the first one as a template for that. Now use a hub to bolt the blades. Drill the holes through the hub and connect all 4 blades.

Solar Panels

The main thing in building a solar panel is to acquire solar cells. Solar cells are very expensive and are not available everywhere. So you should work hard in finding them. You can also use blemished or second-hand solar cells. Try finding it on eBay.

Purchase bricks of solar cells, it should be of 3 * 6 monocrystalline solar cells, if the size is somewhat different then also it is OK. Purchase a total of 36 of these solar cells and wire them in series. Each solar cell produces 1/2 volt. If we connect 36 of these cells in series it would give us 18 volts which are good for charging 12-volt batteries or you can use it for another thing. By using these cells, we’ll produce 60 watts of power in bright sunlight.

It is better if we order 3-4 cells extra, because we may damage some during the process. And yes, keep in mind buy tabbed cells only.

Tidal Power

Tidal power is also known as tidal energy. It is a form of hydropower that converts the energy of tides into electricity. Tidal power is not used much in the world, but it has much potential for the future.

Tidal power is the only form of energy that we get from the motion of the Earth and Moon system and sometimes from Earth and Sun system. For the generation of tides, the tidal forces which are produced by the Sun- Moon, in combination to Earth’s rotation are responsible.

The Earth’s tides are caused by the gravitational interaction with the Sun and the Moon and the Earth’s rotation, and due to this, tidal power is generally inexhaustible and is known as a renewable energy source.

Wave Power

Transport of energy by ocean waves and capturing that energy to some useful work is called wave power. For example, the captured energy can be used for desalination, electricity generation, and pumping of water. Wave power is a renewable source of energy.

Though wave power and tidal power are often considered the same, they are different. Wave power is not used very much as a commercial technology. Many attempts are made to harness the wave power. The world’s first commercial wave power is in Portugal at Agucadora Wave Park.

Waves are mostly generated when wind passes over the sea. Large waves are most powerful and generate more power. Wave power is determined with the help of wave speed, wave height, water density, and wavelength.

Biodiesel

Biodiesel is a type of alternative fuel, and it has gained much popularity in recent times. The use of alternative fuel helps in the reduction of greenhouse gases like carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and sulfur dioxide. Biodiesel which is produced from soybean reduces the amount of cloud formation and hydrocarbon present in the atmosphere. Mostly Soybeans or cooking oils are used in the production of Biodiesel.

The production process of Biodiesel is very simple. The equipment known as “Fuelmeister Biodiesel Processor” is used for the production of Biodiesel. This equipment costs around 2995 US dollars and has all packages with all necessary fittings for Biodiesel production.

The most common method used for the production of Biodiesel is to take straight vegetable oil (SVO) to a diesel engine and heat it to burn the oil directly.

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