November 11, 2012

About Geothermal Energy

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There are numerous different sorts of energy available to power our world. For a long while people have made use of the power of burning ordinary fuels,eg coal (also used to produce steam power) to make energy. In recent times, there has been a shift to using replenish-able resources to make the energy we need. These resources include hydroelectric power, solar energy, wind energy, biomass energy and geothermal energy. While many people know about the first four of these resources, geothermal energy is less well-known.

The word geothermal comes from 2 Greek words, “geo” and “therme”. These words mean “earth” and “heat”, which pretty much describes what geothermal energy is. Geothermal energy is energy that comes from the heat of the Earth, deep underground. The Earth’s core, where chemical reactions create huge amounts of heat, is 4,000 miles below the Earth’s surface. In this core, temperatures can reach up to 9,000 degrees Fahrenheit, and this intense heat can produce energy.

While these are the basics of geothermal energy, there are numerous other parts in the process to make this sort of energy serviceable. We can’t tap right into the Earth’s core to receive this heat, for lots of reasons. So as an alternative folk must create systems that harness the leftover heat that's in the magma (molten rock) under the Earth’s crust. This heat can be employed by tapping into the water reservoirs that are within the magma – these water stores can reach up to 700 degrees Fahrenheit. Think of Old Unswerving in Yellowstone.

A well can be drilled down into the superheated water contained in the Earth’s magma – the geothermal reservoir. Once these geothermal reservoirs are plugged into, the heated water and steam can rise to the surface, and be used to power geothermal power plants as well as in smaller scale projects for personal household use. When employed in geothermal energy generation plants, the steam from the heated underground water is commonly used to power turbines, which then generate energy which can often be harnessed as electricity.

By utilizing the Earth’s own water and heat, energy can be created that can be utilised on a little or large scale. This renewable resource (you can not use the Earth’s heat) is also cleaner and safer in comparison to many other sorts of energy, making it a great type of ecologically sound power source.

Stephen Spreadbury is a professional photographer who’s always on the lookout for a better product or idea for a better earth.

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