Fossil fuels sources burn coal or hydrocarbon fuels, which are the remains of the decomposition of plants and animals.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ33/B Battery
There are three main types of fossil fuels: coal, petroleum, and natural gas. Another fossil fuel, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), is principally derived from the production of natural gas. Heat from burning fossil fuel is used either directly for space heating and process heating, or converted to mechanical energy for vehicles, industrial processes, or electrical power generation.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ33/N Battery
Greenhouse gas emissions result from fossil fuel-based electricity generation. Currently governments subsidize fossil fuels by an estimated $500 billion a year.
Nuclear power stations use nuclear fission to generate energy by the reaction of uranium-235 inside a nuclear reactor.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ33/W Battery
The reactor uses uranium rods, the atoms of which are split in the process of fission, releasing a large amount of energy. The process continues as a chain reaction with other nuclei. The energy heats water to create steam, which spins a turbine generator, producing electricity.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ350N/B Battery
Depending on the type of fission fuel considered, estimates for existing supply at known usage rates varies from several decades for the currently popular Uranium-235 to thousands of years for uranium-238. At the present rate of use, there are (as of 2007) about 70 years left of known uranium-235 reserves economically recoverable at a uranium price of US$ 130/kg.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ350N/N Battery
The nuclear industry argue that the cost of fuel is a minor cost factor for fission power, more expensive, more difficult to extract sources of uranium could be used in the future, such as lower-grade ores, and if prices increased enough, from sources such as granite and seawater.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ350N/P Battery
Increasing the price of uranium would have little effect on the overall cost of nuclear power; a doubling in the cost of natural uranium would increase the total cost of nuclear power by 5 percent. On the other hand, if the price of natural gas was doubled, the cost of gas-fired power would increase by about 60 percent.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ370N/B Battery
Opponents on the other hand argue that the correlation between price and production is not linear, but as the ores' concentration becomes smaller, the difficulty (energy and resource consumption are increasing, while the yields are decreasing) of extraction rises very fast, and that the assertion that a higher price will yield more uranium is overly optimistic;Sony VAIO VGN-TZ37N/G Battery
for example a rough estimate predicts that the extraction of uranium from granite will consume at least 70 times more energy than what it will produce in a reactor. As many as eleven countries have depleted their uranium resources, and only Canada has mines left that produce better than 1% concentration ore. Seawater seems to be equally dubious as a source.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ37N/P Battery
Nuclear meltdowns and other reactor accidents, such as the Fukushima I nuclear accident (2011), Three Mile Island accident (1979) and the Chernobyl disaster (1986), have caused much public concern. Research is being done to lessen the known problems of current reactor technology by developing automated and passively safereactors. Sony VAIO VGN-TZ37N/R Battery
Nuclear proliferation is the spread of nuclear technology which may happen from nation to nation or through other black market channels, including nuclear power plants and related technology including nuclear weapons.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ37N/X Battery
The long-term radioactive waste storage problems of nuclear power have not been solved. Several countries have considered using underground repositories. Nuclear waste takes up little space compared to wastes from the chemical industry which remain toxic indefinitely. Spent fuel rods are now stored in concrete casks close to the nuclear reactors.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ38N/X Battery
The amounts of waste could be reduced in several ways. Both nuclear reprocessing and breeder reactors could reduce the amounts of waste.Subcritical reactors or fusion reactors could greatly reduce the time the waste has to be stored. Subcritical reactors may also be able to do the same to already existing waste. Sony VAIO VGN-TZ398U/XC Battery
At present, nuclear energy is in decline, according to a 2007 World Nuclear Industry Status Report presented by the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament. Sony VAIO VGN-TZ50B Battery
The report outlines that the proportion of nuclear energy in power production has decreased in 21 out of 31 countries, with five fewer functioning nuclear reactors than five years ago. There are currently 32 nuclear power plants under construction or in the pipeline, 20 fewer than at the end of the 1990s.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ90HS Battery
Thorium can be used as fuel in a nuclear reactor. A thorium fuel cycle offers several potential advantages over a uranium fuel cycle including much greater abundanceon Earth, superior physical and nuclear properties of the fuel, enhanced proliferation resistance, and reduced nuclear waste production. Sony VAIO VGN-TZ90NS Battery
Nobel laureate Carlo Rubbiaat CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research), has worked on developing the use of thorium as an alternative to uranium in reactors. Rubbia states that a tonne of thorium can produce as much energy as 200 tonnes of uranium, or 3,500,000 tonnes of coal.Sony VAIO VGN-TZ90S Battery
Fusion power could solve many of the problems of fission power (the technology mentioned above) but, despite research having started in the 1950s, no commercial fusion reactor is expected before 2050.Sony VAIO VPC CW2MFX/PU Battery
Many technical problems remain unsolved. Proposed fusion reactors commonly use deuterium, an isotope of hydrogen, as fuel and in most current designs also lithium. Assuming a fusion energy output equal to the current global output and that this does not increase in the future,Sony VAIO VPC S11V9E/B Battery
then the known current lithium reserves would last 3000 years, lithium from sea water would last 60 million years, and a more complicated fusion process using only deuterium from sea water would have fuel for 150 billion years.
Cost by source
The following chart does not include the external, weather-related costs of using fossil fuels.Sony VAIO VPCB119GJ/B Battery
Large energy subsidies are present in many countries (Barker et al., 2001:567-568). Currently governments subsidize fossil fuels by $557 billion per year. Economic theory indicates that the optimal policy would be to remove coal mining and burning subsidies and replace them with optimal taxes.Sony VAIO VPCB11AGJ Battery
Global studies indicate that even without introducing taxes, subsidy and trade barrier removal at a sectoral level would improve efficiency and reduce environmental damage. Removal of these subsidies would substantially reduce GHG emissions and stimulate economic growth.Sony VAIO VPCB11AVJ Battery
Increased energy efficiency
Energy efficiency is increasing by about 2% a year, and absorbs most of the requirements for energy development. New technology makes better use of already available energy through improved efficiency, such as more efficient fluorescent lamps, engines, and insulation. Sony VAIO VPCB11V9E Battery
Using heat exchangers, it is possible to recover some of the energy in waste warm water and air, for example to preheat incoming fresh water. Hydrocarbon fuel production from pyrolysis could also be in this category, allowing recovery of some of the energy in hydrocarbon waste.Sony VAIO VPCB11X9E Battery
Already existing power plants often can and usually are made more efficient with minor modifications due to new technology. New power plants may become more efficient with technology like cogeneration. New designs for buildings may incorporate techniques like passive solar. Sony VAIO VPCCW18FJ/P Battery
Mass transportation increases energy efficiency compared to widespread conventional automobile use while air travel is regarded as inefficient. Sony VAIO VPCCW18FJ/R Battery
Conventional combustion engine automobiles have continually improved their efficiency and may continue to do so in the future, for example by reducing weight with new materials.Hybrid vehicles can save energy by allowing the engine to run more efficiently, regaining energy from braking, turning off the motor when idling in traffic, etc. Sony VAIO VPCCW18FJ/W Battery
More efficient ceramic or diesel engines can improve mileage. Electric vehicles such as Maglev, trolleybuses, and PHEVs are more efficient during use (but maybe not if doing a life cycle analysis) than similar current combustion based vehicles, reducing their energy consumption during use by 1/2 to 1/4.Sony VAIO VPCCW19FJ/W Battery
Electricity distribution may change in the future. New small scale energy sources may be placed closer to the consumers so that less energy is lost during electricity distribution. Sony VAIO VPCCW1AFJ Battery
New technology like superconductivity or improved power factor correction may also decrease the energy lost. Distributed generation permits electricity "consumers," who are generating electricity for their own needs, to send their surplus electrical power back into the power grid.Sony VAIO VPCCW1AHJ Battery
While new sources of energy are only rarely discovered or made possible by new technology, distribution technology continually evolves. The use of fuel cells in cars, for example, is an anticipated delivery technology.Sony VAIO VPCCW1S1E Battery
This section presents some of the more common delivery technologies that have been important to historic energy development. They all rely in some way on the energy sources listed in the previous section.
Shipping is a flexible delivery technology that is used in the whole range of energy development regimes from primitive to highly advanced. Sony VAIO VPCCW1S1E/B Battery
Currently, coal, petroleum and their derivatives are delivered by shipping via boat, rail, or road. Petroleum and natural gas may also be delivered via pipeline and coal via a Slurry pipeline. Refined hydrocarbon fuels such as gasoline and LPGmay also be delivered via aircraft. Sony VAIO VPCCW1S1E/L Battery
Natural gas pipelines must maintain a certain minimum pressure to function correctly.Ethanol's corrosive properties make it harder to build ethanol pipelines. The higher costs of ethanol transportation and storage are often prohibitive.Sony VAIO VPCCW1S1E/P Battery
Electricity grids are the networks used to transmit and distribute power from production source to end user, when the two may be hundreds of kilometres away. Sources include electrical generation plants such as a nuclear reactor, coal burning power plant, etc.Sony VAIO VPCCW1S1E/R Battery
A combination of sub-stations, transformers, towers, cables, and piping are used to maintain a constant flow of electricity. Grids may suffer from transient blackouts and brownouts, often due to weather damage. During certain extreme space weather eventssolar wind can interfere with transmissions. Sony VAIO VPCCW1S1E/W Battery
Grids also have a predefined carrying capacity or load that cannot safely be exceeded. When power requirements exceed what's available, failures are inevitable. To prevent problems, power is then rationed.
Industrialised countries such as Canada, the US, and Australia are among the highest per capita consumers of electricity in the world, which is possible thanks to a widespread electrical distribution network. Sony VAIO VPCCW21FX/B Battery
The US grid is one of the most advanced, althoughinfrastructure maintenance is becoming a problem. CurrentEnergy provides a realtime overview of the electricity supply and demand for California, Texas, and the Northeast of the US. African countries with small scale electrical grids have a correspondingly low annual per capita usage of electricity. Sony VAIO VPCCW21FX/L Battery
Methods of energy storage have been developed, which transform electrical energy into forms of potential energy.Sony VAIO VPCCW21FX/R Battery
Some natural forms of energy are found in stable chemical compounds such as fossil fuels. Sony VAIO VPCCW21FX/W Battery
Most systems of chemical energy storage result from biological activity, which store energy in chemical bonds. Man-made forms of chemical energy storage include hydrogen fuel, synthetic hydrocarbon fuel, batteries and explosives such ascordite and dynamite.Sony VAIO VPCCW26EC Battery
Gravitational and hydroelectric
Dams can be used to store energy, by using pumped-storage hydroelectricity, excess energy to pump water into the reservoir. When electrical energy is required, the process is reversed. The water then turns a turbine, generating electricity. Sony VAIO VPCCW26FX/B Battery
There are several technologies to store heat. Thermal energy from the sun, for example, can be stored in a reservoir or in the ground for daily or seasonal use. Thermal energy for cooling can be stored in ice.Sony VAIO VPCCW28EC Battery
Energy may also be stored in pressurized gases or alternatively in a vacuum. Compressed air, for example, may be used to operate vehicles and power tools. Sony VAIO VPCCW28FJ/P Battery
Large-scale compressed air energy storage facilities are used to smooth out demands on electricity generation by providing energy during peak hours and storing energy during off-peak hours. Such systems save on expensive generating capacity since it only needs to meet average consumption rather than peak consumption. Sony VAIO VPCCW28FJ/R Battery
Electrical energy may be stored in capacitors. Capacitors are often used to produce high intensity releases of energy (such as a camera's flash).
Hydrogen can be manufactured at roughly 77 percent thermal efficiency by the method of steam reforming of natural gas.Sony VAIO VPCCW28FJ/W Battery
When manufactured by this method it is a derivative fuel like gasoline; when produced by electrolysis of water, it is a form of chemical energy storage as are storage batteries, though hydrogen is the more versatile storage mode since there are two options for its conversion to useful work:Sony VAIO VPCCW29FJ/W Battery
(1) a fuel cell can convert the chemicals hydrogen and oxygen into water, and in the process, produce electricity, or (2) hydrogen can be burned (less efficiently than in a fuel cell) in an internal combustion engine.
Batteries are used to store energy in a chemical form.Sony VAIO VPCCW2AFJ Battery
As an alternative energy, batteries can be used to store energy in battery electric vehicles. Battery electric vehicles can be charged from the grid when the vehicle is not in use. Because the energy is derived from electricity, battery electric vehicles make it possible to use other forms of alternative energy such as wind, solar,geothermal, nuclear, or hydroelectric.Sony VAIO VPCCW2AHJ Battery
The environmental movement emphasizes sustainability of energy use and development. Renewable energy is sustainable in its production; the available supply will not be diminished for the foreseeable future - millions or billions of years. "Sustainability" also refers to the ability of the environment to cope with waste products, especially air pollution.Sony VAIO VPCCW2S1E Battery
Fossil fuels such as petroleum, coal, and natural gas are not renewable. For example, the timing of worldwide peak oil production is being actively debated but it has already happened in some countries.Sony VAIO VPCCW2S1E/B Battery
Fossil fuels also make up the bulk of the world's currentprimary energy sources. With global demand for energy growing, the need to adopt alternative energy sources is also growing. Fossil fuels are also a major source of greenhouse gas emissions, leading to concerns about global warming if consumption is not reduced.Sony VAIO VPCCW2S1E/L Battery
Energy conservation is an alternative or complementary process to energy development. It reduces the demand for energy by using it more efficiently.
Some observers contend that the much talked about idea of “energy independence” is an unrealistic and opaque concept.Sony VAIO VPCCW2S1E/P Battery
They offer “energy resilience” as a more sensible goal and more aligned with economic, security and energy realities. The notion of resilience in energy was detailed in the 1982 book Brittle Power: Energy Strategy for National Security. Sony VAIO VPCCW2S1E/R Battery
The authors argued that simply switching to domestic energy would be no more secure inherently because the true weakness is the interdependent and vulnerable energy infrastructure of the United States. Key aspects such as gas lines and the electrical power grid are centralized and easily susceptible to major disruption.Sony VAIO VPCCW2S1E/W Battery
They conclude that a “resilient energy supply” is necessary for both national security and the environment. They recommend a focus on energy efficiency and renewable energy that is more decentralized.
More recently former Intel Corporation Chairman and CEO Andrew Grove has touted energy resilience, arguing that complete independence is infeasible given the global market for energy.Sony VAIO VPCCW2S5C CN1 Battery
He describes energy resilience as the ability to adjust to interruptions in the supply of energy. To this end he suggests the U.S. make greater use of electricity. Electricity can be produced from a variety of sources. A diverse energy supply will be less impacted by the disruption in supply of any one source. Sony VAIO VPCF112FX/B Battery
He reasons that another feature of electrification is that electricity is “sticky” – meaning the electricity produced in the U.S. is more likely to stay there because it cannot be transported overseas. According to Grove, a key aspect of advancing electrification and energy resilience will be converting the U.S. automotive fleet from gasoline-powered to electric-powered. Sony VAIO VPCF115FG/B Battery
This, in turn, will require the modernization and expansion of the electrical power grid. As organizations such as the Reform Institute have pointed out, advancements associated with the developing smart grid would facilitate the ability of the grid to absorb vehicles en masse connecting to it to charge their batteries. Sony VAIO VPCF116FGBI Battery
Extrapolations from current knowledge to the future offer a choice of energy futures. Some predictions parallel the Malthusian catastrophe hypothesis. Numerous are complex models based scenarios as pioneered by Limits to Growth. Sony VAIO VPCF117FJ/W Battery
Modeling approaches offer ways to analyze diverse strategies, and hopefully find a road to rapid and sustainable development of humanity. Short term energy crises are also a concern of energy development. Some extrapolations lack plausibility, particularly when they predict a continual increase in oil consumption.Sony VAIO VPCF117HG/BI Battery
Energy production usually requires an energy investment. Drilling for oil or building a wind power plant requires energy. The fossil fuel resources (see above) that are left are often increasingly difficult to extract and convert. They may thus require increasingly higher energy investments. Sony VAIO VPCF118FJ/W Battery
If the investment is greater than the energy produced, then the fossil resource is no longer an energy source. This means that a large part of the fossil fuel resources and especially the non-conventional ones cannot be used for energy production today.Sony VAIO VPCF119FC Battery
Such resources may still be exploited economically in order to produce raw materials forplastics, fertilizers or even transportation fuel but now more energy is consumed than produced. (They then become similar to ordinary mining reserves, economically recoverable but not net positive energy sources.) Sony VAIO VPCF119FC/BI Battery
Between 1950 and 1984, as the Green Revolution transformed agriculture around the globe, world grain production increased by 250%.Sony VAIO VPCF119FJ/BI Battery
The energy for the Green Revolution was provided by fossil fuels in the form of fertilizers (natural gas), pesticides (oil), andhydrocarbon fueled irrigation. The peaking of world hydrocarbon production (peak oil) may lead to significant changes, and require sustainable methods of production.Sony VAIO VPCF11AFJ Battery
Natural-gas condensate is a low-density mixture of hydrocarbon liquids that are present as gaseous components in the raw natural gas produced from many naturalgas fields.
It condenses out of the raw gas if the temperature is reduced to below the hydrocarbon dew point temperature of the raw gas.Sony VAIO VPCF11AGJ Battery
The natural gas condensate is also referred to as simply condensate, or gas condensate, or sometimes natural gasoline because it contains hydrocarbons within the gasoline boiling range. Raw natural gas may come from any one of three types of gas wells:Sony VAIO VPCF11AHJ Battery
- Crude oil wells—Raw natural gas that comes from crude oil wells is called associated gas. This gas can exist separate from the crude oil in the underground formation, or dissolved in the crude oil.
- Dry gas wells—These wells typically produce only raw natural gas that does not contain any hydrocarbon liquids. Such gas is called non-associated gas.Sony VAIO VPCF11JFX/B Battery
- Condensate wells—These wells produce raw natural gas along with natural gas liquid. Such gas is also non-associated gas and often referred to as wet gas.
Composition of natural-gas condensate
There are hundreds of wet gas fields worldwide and each has its own unique gas condensate composition. Sony VAIO VPCF11M1E Battery
- Hydrogen sulfide (H2S)
- Thiols traditionally also called mercaptans (denoted as RSH, where R is an organic group such as methyl, ethyl, etc.)
- Carbon dioxide (CO2) Sony VAIO VPCF11M1E/H Battery
- Straight-chain alkanes having from 2 to 12 carbon atoms (denoted as C2 to C12)
- Cyclohexane and perhaps other naphthenes
- Aromatics (benzene, toluene, xylenes, and ethylbenzene) Sony VAIO VPCF11MFX/B Battery
Separating the condensate from the raw natural gas
There are literally hundreds of different equipment configurations for the processing required to separate natural gas condensate from a raw natural gas. The schematic flow diagram to the right depicts just one of the possible configurations.Sony VAIO VPCF11S1E Battery
The raw natural gas feedstock from a gas well or a group of wells is cooled to lower the gas temperature to below its hydrocarbon dew point at the feedstock pressure and that condenses a good part of the gas condensate hydrocarbons. Sony VAIO VPCF11S1E/B Battery
The feedstock mixture of gas, liquid condensate and water is then routed to a high pressure separator vessel where the water and the raw natural gas are separated and removed. The raw natural gas from the high pressure separator is sent to the main gas compressor.Sony VAIO VPCF11Z1E Battery
The gas condensate from the high pressure separator flows through a throttling control valve to a low pressure separator. The reduction in pressure across the control valve causes the condensate to undergo a partial vaporization referred to as a flash vaporization. Sony VAIO VPCF11Z1E/BI Battery
The raw natural gas from the low pressure separator is sent to a "booster" compressor which raises the gas pressure and sends it through a cooler and on to the main gas compressor. The main gas compressor raises the pressure of the gases from the high and low pressure separators to whatever pressure is required for the pipeline transportation of the gas to the raw natural gas processingplant.Sony VAIO VPCF11ZHJ Battery
At the raw natural gas processing plant, the gas will be dehydrated and acid gases and other impurities will be removed from the gas.Sony VAIO VPCF127HGBI Battery
The water removed from both the high and low pressure separators will probably need to be processed to remove hydrogen sulfide (H2S) before the water can be disposed of or reused in some fashion.Sony VAIO VPCF137HG/BI Battery
Some of the raw natural gas may be re-injected into the gas wells to help maintain the gas reservoir pressures.
Drip gas is natural gas condensate, a naturally occurring form of gasoline found near many oil and natural gas wells, in natural gas pipelines, and as a byproduct of natural gas extraction.Sony VAIO VPCS111FM/S Battery
It is also known as "condensate," "natural gasoline," "casing head gas," "raw gas," "white gas," and "liquid gold." Drip gas has industrial uses as a cleaner and solvent, as a lantern and stove fuel, and as a denaturing additive for fuel alcohol.
Historical use in vehicles
Some very early internal combustion engines—such as the first types made by Karl Benz, and early Wright brothers aircraft engines—used natural gasoline, which could be either drip gas or a similar range of hydrocarbons distilled from crude oil.Sony VAIO VPCS115EC Battery
Natural gasoline has an octane rating of about 30 to 50, sufficient for the low-compression engines of the early 20th century. By 1930, improved engines and higher compression ratios required higher-octane, refined gasolines to produce power without knocking or detonation.Sony VAIO VPCS115FG Battery
Beginning in the Great Depression, drip gas was used as a replacement for commercial gasoline by people in oil-producing areas. "In the days of simple engines in automobiles and farm tractors it was not uncommon for anyone having access to a condensate well to fill his tank with 'drip,'" according to the Oklahoma Historical Society. Sony VAIO VPCS117GG Battery
Woody Guthrie's autobiographical novel Seeds of Man begins with Woody and his uncle Jeff tapping a natural gas pipeline for drip gas. The gas also has a mention inBadlands, the Terrence Malick movie.Sony VAIO VPCS117GGB Battery
It was sold commercially at gas stations and hardware stores in North America until the early 1950's. The White gas sold today is a similar product but is produced at refineries with the benzene removed.
In 1975, the New Mexico State Police's drip gas detail – three men in pickup trucks – began patrolling oil and gas fields, catching thieves and recovering barrels of stolen gas. The detail stopped its work in 1987.Sony VAIO VPCS118EC Battery
The use of drip gas in cars and trucks is now illegal in many states. It is also harmful to modern engines due to its low octane rating, high heat of combustion and lack of additives. It has a distinctive smell when used as a fuel, which allowed police to catch people using drip gas illegally.Sony VAIO VPCS119FJ/B Battery
Under the United States Code of Federal Regulations, drip gas consists of butane, pentane, and hexane hydrocarbons. Within set ranges of distillation, drip gas may be extracted and used to denature fuel alcohol.Sony VAIO VPCS119GC Battery,Sony VAIO VPCS11AFJ Battery,Sony VAIO VPCS11AGJ Battery