Energy Resources: Occurrence, Production, Conversion, Use

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- Energy Resources: Occurrence, Production, Conversion, Use by WENDELL H. WISER

Gasification refers to the conversion of coal to a mixture of gases, including carbon monoxide , hydrogen , methane , and other hydrocarbons, depending on the conditions involved. Gasification may be accomplished either in situ or in processing plants.

In situ gasification is accomplished by controlled, incomplete burning of a coal bed underground while adding air and steam. The gases are withdrawn and may be burned to produce heat or generate electricity , or they may be used as synthesis gas in indirect liquefaction or the production of chemicals. Coal liquefaction —that is, any process of turning coal into liquid products resembling crude oil—may be either direct or indirect i.


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Four general methods are used for liquefaction: 1 pyrolysis and hydrocarbonization coal is heated in the absence of air or in a stream of hydrogen , 2 solvent extraction coal hydrocarbons are selectively dissolved and hydrogen is added to produce the desired liquids , 3 catalytic liquefaction hydrogenation takes place in the presence of a catalyst —for example, zinc chloride , and 4 indirect liquefaction carbon monoxide and hydrogen are combined in the presence of a catalyst.

Article Media. Info Print Print. Table Of Contents. Submit Feedback. Thank you for your feedback. Introduction History of the use of coal In ancient times In Europe In the New World Modern utilization Coal as an energy source Conversion Problems associated with the use of coal Hazards of mining and preparation Hazards of utilization Coal types and ranks Coal types Macerals Coal rock types Banded and nonbanded coals Ranking by coalification Hydrocarbon content Chemical content and properties Origin of coal Coal-forming materials Plant matter The fossil record Formation processes Peat Coalification Structure and properties of coal Organic compounds Properties Density Porosity Reflectivity Other properties World distribution of coal General occurrence Resources and reserves.

Written By: Otto C. See Article History.

U.S. Energy Information Administration - EIA - Independent Statistics and Analysis

Facts Matter. Water circulating in the boreholes is heated up and is used at the surface either directly or via heat pumps to provide heating and hot water for large heat consumers. Hydrothermal geothermal describes the use of heat from thermal water which is either naturally escaping or is tapped by boreholes.

Hydrothermal geothermal energy has been typically applied to supply hot water or for greenhouses. In this way an underground geothermal heat exchanger is formed through a system of natural and artificial fissures. Geothermal power plants use this process to generate power using steam turbines.

Biomass is any organic, i. Biomass includes wood and agricultural crops, herbaceous and woody energy crops, municipal organic wastes as well as manure. Bio-energy is energy derived from the conversion of biomass where biomass may be used directly as fuel, or processed into liquids and gases. Bio-fuels are fuels derived from biomass or waste feed-stocks; includes ethanol and biodiesel.

Present Sources of Energy

Since time in memorial the use of biomass has been evident among mankind and is currently the most important renewable energy source in the world. It has a great advantage that it is easy to store and energy can be extracted at relatively high efficiencies, but before it can be used as a conventional energy source, various customized conversion technologies are required depending on the respective solid, liquid or gaseous starting materials. The production of heat and electricity can be achieved through this bio-conversion process.

Ethanol on the other hand can be used as industrial alcohol and fuel alcohol without further conversion in a wide variety of applications.

Present Sources of Energy

Unlike renewable energies, fossil fuels will be exhausted in the foreseeable future, and the same applies to naturally occurring radioactive nuclear fuels such as uranium. Besides being non-renewable, fossil fuels have the further disadvantage, they release greenhouse gases, especially carbon dioxide CO2 , during combustion.

The intensive use of fossil fuels in the past hundred years has influenced the global climate significantly in this way.

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It is therefore regarded as a necessity to reduce fossil fuel consumption in order to limit climate change and the negative impacts thereof. Peat occupies an intermediate position between coal and biomass. Coal is a variety of solid, combustible, sedimentary, organic rocks that are composed mainly of carbon and varying amounts of other components such as hydrogen, oxygen, sulphur and moisture.

Coal is formed from vegetation that has been consolidated between other rock strata and altered by the combined effects of pressure and heat over millions of years. Many different classifications of coal are used around the world, reflecting a broad range of ages, compositions and properties. It is also considered as the first source of electricity generation, since the beginning of the 21st century it has been the fastest growing global energy source.

Irrespective of its economic benefits for the countries, the environmental impact of coal use, especially that coming from carbon dioxide emissions, should be addressed as a global issue.


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Although it is developing it is far from the required deployment-level to keep CO2 emissions at acceptable levels. The composition of the natural gas can vary widely depending on the gas field. Natural gas is considered as a good source of electricity supply for a number of reasons which range from economic, operational and environmental, these include;.

Gas plants are flexible both technical and economic terms, they can also react quickly to demand peaks and are ideally twinned with intermittent renewable options such as wind power. Atoms make up all the elements in the universe, an atom is composed of a nucleus and electrons, a nucleus is composed of neutrons and protons. Some nuclei are stable, and some undergo spontaneous radioactive decay, this decay can also be induced by interaction with neutrons or other particles. These neutrons then go on to split more nuclei and a chain reaction takes place. This chain reaction produces heat, via radiation, and the slowing down of fission products as they impact the fuel around them.

Nuclear reactors are designed to convert this heat into electricity, like in any other thermal power plant. To avoid overheating, the plants incorporate cooling systems. Nuclear fusion is another type of nuclear reaction in which extra energy is released when light nuclei are fused together.

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This type of reaction produces heat in the sun and other stars. Unlike the nuclear fission process, extreme temperatures and pressure are needed to initiate and sustain the fusion reaction.


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  8. In the power plants, before starting a new cycle, the steam which is used to spin the turbine in the last cycle has to be condensed to water at first and then reheated to change into steam again. View on IEEE. Save to Library. Create Alert. Share This Paper. Figures from this paper.

    Most geothermal resources are near the boundaries of the earth’s tectonic plates

    Citations Publications citing this paper. Behavioral analysis of thermoelectric module under different configurations and temperature gradient Azdiana Md. Jerry Daniel , H.

    References Publications referenced by this paper.

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