<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >
Sufficient, reliable sources of energy are a necessity for industrialized nations. Energy is used for heating, cooking, transportation and manufacturing. Energy can be generally classified as non-renewable and renewable.....

Non-renewable energy sources

Introduction

Sufficient, reliable sources of energy are a necessity for industrialized nations. Energy is used for heating, cooking, transportation and manufacturing. Energy can be generally classified as non-renewable and renewable. Over 85% of the energy used in the world is from non-renewable supplies. Most developed nations are dependent on non-renewable energy sources such as fossil fuels (coal and oil) and nuclear power. These sources are called non-renewable because they cannot be renewed or regenerated quickly enough to keep pace with their use. Some sources of energy are renewable or potentially renewable. Examples of renewable energy sources are: solar, geothermal, hydroelectric, biomass, and wind. Renewable energy sources are more commonly by used in developing nations.

Industrialized societies depend on non-renewable energy sources. Fossil fuels are the most commonly used types of non-renewable energy. They were formed when incompletely decomposed plant and animal matter was buried in the earth's crust and converted into carbon-rich material that is useable as fuel. This process occurred over millions of years. The three main types of fossil fuels are coal, oil, and natural gas. Two other less-used sources of fossil fuels are oil shales and tar sands.

Coal

Coal is the most abundant fossil fuel in the world with an estimated reserve of one trillion metric tons. Most of the world's coal reserves exist in Eastern Europe and Asia, but the United States also has considerable reserves. Coal formed slowly over millions of years from the buried remains of ancient swamp plants. During the formation of coal, carbonaceous matter was first compressed into a spongy material called "peat," which is about 90% water. As the peat became more deeply buried, the increased pressure and temperature turned it into coal.

Different types of coal resulted from differences in the pressure and temperature that prevailed during formation. The softest coal (about 50% carbon), which also has the lowest energy output, is called lignite . Lignite has the highest water content (about 50%) and relatively low amounts of smog-causing sulfur. With increasing temperature and pressure, lignite is transformed into bituminous coal (about 85% carbon and 3% water). Anthracite (almost 100% carbon) is the hardest coal and also produces the greatest energy when burned. Less than 1% of the coal found in the United States is anthracite. Most of the coal found in the United States is bituminous . Unfortunately, bituminous coal has the highest sulfur content of all the coal types. When the coal is burned, the pollutant sulfur dioxide is released into the atmosphere.

Coal mining creates several environmental problems. Coal is most cheaply mined from near-surface deposits using strip mining techniques. Strip-mining causes considerable environmental damage in the forms of erosion and habitat destruction. Sub-surface mining of coal is less damaging to the surface environment, but is much more hazardous for the miners due to tunnel collapses and gas explosions. Currently, the world is consuming coal at a rate of about 5 billion metric tons per year. The main use of coal is for power generation, because it is a relatively inexpensive way to produce power.

Questions & Answers

Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
research.net
kanaga
sciencedirect big data base
Ernesto
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
Bharti
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
Daniel
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
Maciej
characteristics of micro business
Abigail
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Anassong
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
NANO
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
s.
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
Tarell
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
Damian
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
Tarell
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
Virgil
is Bucky paper clear?
CYNTHIA
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
NANO
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Harper
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
s.
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
SUYASH Reply
for screen printed electrodes ?
SUYASH
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
Ebrahim
or in general
Ebrahim
in general
s.
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
tahir
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
Cied
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
Privacy Information Security Software Version 1.1a
Good
Got questions? Join the online conversation and get instant answers!
Jobilize.com Reply

Get the best Algebra and trigonometry course in your pocket!





Source:  OpenStax, Ap environmental science. OpenStax CNX. Sep 25, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10548/1.2
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'Ap environmental science' conversation and receive update notifications?

Ask