Alternative energy resources Essay

This essay has a total of 1141 words and 6 pages.

Alternative energy resources

The energy that is used today comes from fossil fuels, which is a nonrenewable limited
resource that will eventually be used up. Alternative energy sources such as solar,
hydroelectric, geothermal and wind energies can be used, to conserve the planets limited
natural resources. Alternative energy is the use of another energy without the burning of
fossil fuels and break up on atoms. Solar energy can be used to operate cars and provide
electricity for homes and businesses. Hydroelectric energy can be used to provide electric
power to small towns and cities. Geothermal energy can be used to heat buildings or water
and to power turbines to make power. Wind energy can be used to pump water and generate

Solar energy is of the most resourceful sources of alternative energy. It is the most
important of the non-conventional sources of energy, because it does not pollute the
earth. "One of the reasons for this is that the total energy we receive each year from the
sun is around 35,000 times the total energy used by man." (Alternative energy sources)
Solar energy can be converted directly or indirectly into alternative forms of energy.
People use solar energy for many things, but most of it is used for heating, cooling,
transportation and the generation of electricity. When the sun's rays are

transformed into electricity, it is called photovoltaic energy. This is a simple way to
get electricity. Photovoltaic panels can be put on the roof of a house to provide
electricity or can be used in remote places where there is not electricity from other
sources. Solar energy also powers cars without the use of gasoline which is made from the
fossil fuel oil.

Solar-powered vehicles (SPV's), such as cars, boats, bicycles, and even airplanes, use
solar energy to either power an electric motor directly, and/or use solar energy to charge
a battery, which powers the motor. They use an array of solar photovoltaic (PV) cells (or
modules made of cells) that convert sunlight into electricity. The electricity either goes
directly to an electric motor powering the vehicle, or to a special storage battery. The
PV array can be built (integrated) onto the vehicle body itself, or fixed on a building or
a vehicle shelter to charge an electric vehicle (EV) battery when it is parked. (Green

Next, "Hydroelectric power is the largest source of renewable electricity in the world and
in the United States."( Union of Concerned Scientists)This energy comes from water that is
moving with ample speed and volume to turn a generator. The most common type of
hydroelectric power comes from using a dam on a river or lake. Water is discharged from
the reservoir, which spins the turbine, which activates a generator to get electricity.
Hydroelectric power does not require a large dam. Some hydroelectric power plants just use
a small canal to channel the river water through a turbine. (Union of Concerned

Third, geothermal energy is heat from the earth that is used directly as hot water or
steam, or used to produce electricity. Geothermal energy is contained in underground
reservoirs of steam, hot water, hot dry rocks and hot spots.

Geothermal hot spots are volcanic features which are found all around the world. Basically
a hotspot is an area of reduced thickness in the mantle which transmits excess internal
heat from the interior of the earth to the outer crust. These hot spots are well known for
their unique effects on the surface, such as the volcanic islands of Hawaii, the mineral
deposits and geysers in Yellowstone National Park, or the hot springs in Iceland. These
geothermal hot spots can easily be used to generate electricity. (Alternative Energy

They are used at electric generating facilities, hot water or steam extracted from
geothermal reservoirs in the Earth's crust is supplied to steam turbines at electric
utilities that drive generators to produce electricity. Moderate to low temperature
geothermal resources are used for direct use applications such as district and space
heating. Lower temperature, shallow ground, geothermal resources are used by geothermal
heat pumps to heat and cool buildings. (World Bank Group)

Another energy is wind energy,"Wind can be used to do work. The kinetic energy of the wind
can be changed into other forms of energy, either mechanical energy or electrical energy."
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