Nowadays it is difficult to imagine life without the use of electricity. Energy was, is and will be needed by people in their lives. Its form, form or use may be different, but above all we need it for industrial production, transport, heating homes and lighting. Initially, this energy was provided to us by the environment in the form of natural resources of unprocessed fuels, such as wood, lignite, hard coal, oil and gas. However, the continuous increase in energy demand, shrinkage of mine resources as well as ecological and economic considerations pose new tasks and challenges in this field. Especially in recent years, efforts have been made to develop effective methods of obtaining electricity from renewable sources such as: the sun, water, or the Earth’s natural heat.
Renewable energy source – it is a source that uses solar energy in various forms in the processing process, in particular solar radiation, wind energy or biomass, as well as kinetic energy of flowing water and internal heat of the Earth. At the current level of technical civilization, a part of municipal and industrial waste that is suitable for energy processing, especially plastics, can be considered as a renewable energy source.
Advantages of renewable sources :
- minimal impact on the environment,
- fuel savings (elimination of coal, oil and gas consumption in electricity production),
- large, constantly renewing energy resources,
- fixed unit cost of electricity generated,
- the ability to work on a separate network,
- scattered throughout the country, which solves the problem of energy transport, because they can be obtained anywhere and eliminates losses related to distribution and will avoid the construction of transmission lines.
Wind energy is one of the fastest growing unconventional energy sectors in the world. Poland is an average country when considering wind energy resources. Only in some regions of the country the average wind speed exceeds 4 m / s, which is the minimum take-off speed of most power plants. However, they are large enough to become a very efficient source of electricity if properly implemented.
Wind energy is also widely used today in households as well as on a larger scale in wind farms. The use of this type of solutions is not very expensive, due to the not too complicated construction of devices and uncomplicated operation.
In order to increase the power obtained, so-called wind farms – complexes of many wind farms located next to each other.
The advantages of wind farms are:
- satisfying the growing energy needs of the population by developing ecologically clean clean energy,
- the ability to power hard to reach places,
- increase in the share of energy obtained from renewable sources in the energy balance,
- the possibility of activating sparsely populated or poor soil areas.
The disadvantages of wind farms are:
- high installation costs,
- changes in the landscape,
- negative impact on bird populations in a given area.
However, the current rules of electricity trading and legal provisions regulating the cooperation of ecological power plants with power engineering are not conducive to the development of this area of the economy. The price of electricity is undoubtedly influenced by the cooperation between ecological energy producers and professional power generation.
Solar energy (helioenergetics) deals with the acquisition, processing and use of solar radiation energy. Almost all the energy of this radiation is concentrated in visible and infrared radiation; solar radiation is also the cause of many phenomena occurring on Earth and used in the power industry (winds, waves and moral currents, formation of precipitation supplying rivers). Technical potential solar radiation energy is much lower than theoretical, and its use is also low.
Solar energy is the largest source of energy available to man. The big problem is not obtaining this energy but its storage and use at the right time. We are constantly working on a better use of solar energy. The theoretical potential of solar radiation in Poland is estimated at 3.3 to 4 GJ / m2 per year. This means 1.1 x 106 PJ per year per country, mainly from April to September – about 80% In Poland, there are average sunlight conditions. Compared to Italy, we have over 60% less sun per year. However, the map of solar energy resources developed for Poland shows that the best conditions occur in the eastern part of Poland.
Solar energy can be converted into electricity and heat by installations mounted on the roofs of buildings and built-up areas. Such conditions occur in approximately 0.5% of Poland.
Solar radiation is mainly used in agriculture, heating (solar thermal collectors) and electricity (photovoltaic cells). However, technologies based on the use of solar collectors have the greatest development opportunities in the short term.
For the conversion of solar radiation into usable thermal energy, among others, solar collectors are produced and used around the world today in quite large quantities. They are devices that capture solar energy and convert it into thermal energy. They are usually installed in roofs. There is a possibility of mounting on the southern wall of the building on a specially prepared frame or on the ground.
Geothermal energy – generally it is energy accumulated in soils, rocks and fluids filling pores and rock crevices. Geothermal energy is primarily discussed when the carrier of this energy is water and steam. This energy, taking into account the period of existence of human civilization, is practically inexhaustible as a result of its transfer from within the Earth by conduction and convection. Geothermal energy is based on hot water circulating in the permeable rock layer of the Earth’s crust below 1000 m.
The attractiveness of these sources is demonstrated by:
- availability, their sources are not subject to fluctuations in weather and climate conditions,
- these are non-exhaustive sources,
- indifference to the environment – geothermal energy does not emit any harmful substances,
- geothermal devices do not take up much space and do not affect the appearance of the landscape almost at all.
Geothermal waters are located under the surface of almost 80% of Poland’s territory. Despite the abundance of waters, their exploitation is not easy. The main obstacle is both the mining conditions and the economic side of this type of enterprise.
There are four geothermal heating plants operating in Poland so far:
- Bańska Niżna (4.5 MJ / s, ultimately 70 MJ / s),
- Pyrzyce (15 MJ / s, ultimately 50 MJ / s),
- Mszczonów (7.3 MJ / s),
- Uniejów (2.6 MJ / s).
The most popular way to use geothermal energy in addition to electricity production is to build geothermal heating plants. In addition, it is also used in balneology, heating buildings using heat pumps, crops, the chemical industry, drying, processing, fish farming, swimming pools, etc.
Around 40 countries around the world use geothermal energy for purposes other than electricity production, which gives a total value of 11,400 MW. The largest recipients of heat from geothermal energy are Japan, China, Hungary, the former USSR, Iceland and the USA. In Europe, Iceland is worth paying attention to, as much as 85% of heat demand comes from geothermal energy and covers as much as 46% of the country’s primary energy.
Hydropower(hydroenergetics) deals with obtaining water energy and converting it to moss energy. and electr. using water engines (water turbines) and hydrogenerators in water power plants (e.g. in mills) and hydroelectric power plants, as well as other equipment (in maretermic and maremotoric power plants). Hydropower is based primarily on the use of inland water energy (less often seas – in tidal power plants) with high flow rates and high slopes – measured by the difference in upper and lower water levels, taking into account flow losses. The use of inland water energy and tidal waters in power plants. consists in reducing within a certain area (stream section, river, part of the bay) natural losses of water energy and obtaining its accumulation in relation to the outflow level. In addition to energy, reservoir hydro power plants can simultaneously fulfill other tasks, such as flood protection and flow regulation due to navigation. Pumped-storage hydro power plants, which allow water to be used as energy storage, are of great importance. Hydropower development depends on water energy resources, the so-called hydropower resources. Hydropower dominates for Poland. have lower Vistula and Dunajec. In 1990, electricity production from water energy in Poland amounted to 3.3 TW · h, and in the world – around 2162 TW · h. Recently, more and more attention has been paid to energy. using small watercourses by building the so-called small hydropower plants; in the first place this applies to those streams where there are already damming devices used for other purposes. The development of hydropower is supported by the fact that the cost of electricity produced in a hydroelectric power plant is lower than electricity produced in the thermal power plant.
IN THE WORLD:
Hydroenergetics developed after World War II, along with the construction of great dams in Egypt on the Nile, in N and S America, and in the countries of the former USSR. A huge dam was also built on the Yangtze River in China, which will prevent floods and allow for increased electricity production.
IN POLAND :
Żarnowiec, Porąbka-Żar, Solina on the San River, Włocławek on the Vistula, Rożnów-Czchów and Czorsztyn on the Dunajec, Pilchowice on the Bóbr
Nuclear Powerdeals with nuclear energy acquisition and processing. contained in fissile elements; nuclear energy is released in a nuclear reactor, mainly in the form of heat (over 95%) and used either directly for heating or converted to mech. or electr. (nuclear-powered ships and nuclear power plants). The development of nuclear power was determined by environmental protection considerations and the depletion of traditional fuel resources. Some countries are moving away from nuclear power (in Poland 1990 the construction of a nuclear power plant in Żarnowiec was abandoned); this is the result of its low economic competitiveness and adverse social climate. around this energy, especially after the accident at Three Mile Island (USA, 1979) and the Chernobyl disaster (Ukraine, 1986; Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant). For the further development of nuclear power, the most important thing is to ensure safe operation of the nuclear power plant. et al. nuclear facilities the fuel cycle as well as the safe storage of radioactive waste.
Sea energy – tidal, wave and thermal energy of the sea are currently used. The use of sea current energy is envisaged. The world’s largest tidal power plant, launched in 1967, works in France at the mouth of the La Rance River to the English Channel. It has 24 water turbines with a capacity of 10 MW, so its power is 240 MW. Tidal power plants also work in Canada, China and Russia. They are designed in Great Britain, South Korea and India. Power stations using wave energy to power water turbines work on the Norwegian island of Toftestallen for 350 kW, and on Islay off the coast of Sweden. Energy is also obtained by using the difference in ocean water temperature on the surface and deep in the ocean. The best conditions for this purpose exist in the oceanic equatorial areas, where the surface water temperature is about 30 ° C, and at a depth of 300-500 m – about 7 ° C. The use of this temperature difference is carried out using ammonia, freon or propane, which evaporates at surface water temperature and is liquefied with water drawn from a depth of 300-500 m. The entire installation, along with the generator, is located on a floating platform and is called a power plant maretermicznej. Electricity is transferred ashore via the submarine cable. The electricity generated in such power plants is used on the island of Bali in Indonesia (5 MW), Japan (10 MW), Tahiti (5 MW) and Hawaii (40 MW). The use of this temperature difference is carried out using ammonia, freon or propane, which evaporates at surface water temperature and is liquefied with water drawn from a depth of 300-500 m. The entire installation, along with the generator, is located on a floating platform and is called a power plant maretermicznej. Electricity is transferred ashore via the submarine cable. The electricity generated in such power plants is used on the island of Bali in Indonesia (5 MW), Japan (10 MW), Tahiti (5 MW) and Hawaii (40 MW). The use of this temperature difference is carried out using ammonia, freon or propane, which evaporates at surface water temperature and is liquefied with water drawn from a depth of 300-500 m. The entire installation, along with the generator, is located on a floating platform and is called a power plant maretermicznej. Electricity is transferred ashore via the submarine cable. The electricity generated in such power plants is used on the island of Bali in Indonesia (5 MW), Japan (10 MW), Tahiti (5 MW) and Hawaii (40 MW). Electricity is transferred ashore via the submarine cable. The electricity generated in such power plants is used on the island of Bali in Indonesia (5 MW), Japan (10 MW), Tahiti (5 MW) and Hawaii (40 MW). Electricity is transferred ashore via the submarine cable. The electricity generated in such power plants is used on the island of Bali in Indonesia (5 MW), Japan (10 MW), Tahiti (5 MW) and Hawaii (40 MW).
biomassit contains a large amount of moisture (not dried) and is not suitable for combustion, but it can be used in the anaerobic (methane) fermentation process to obtain a product called biogas. An example would be an automated and computerized biogas plant operating at a landfill in Toruń. This installation produces 550 kW of electricity and 800 kW of thermal energy per hour used for heating apartments. The energy produced during the year corresponds to the energy obtained from the combustion of 2.6 thous. tons of coal. Another way to obtain energy from biomass is composting and capturing the heat generated. A plant biomass production program has been developed in Sweden, creating special energy plantations. Currently, 50-70 m3 of willow wood mass is grown there on an area of 1 ha per year. To this should be added 4-7 tons of biomass made from the leaves and roots of these trees. The plantation costs are reimbursed after five years.