Wundervölker, Monstrosität und Hässlichkeit im Mittelalter (German Edition)

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Gigler estimates that in some 1 million out of 7 million houses will still need gas, probably in combination with a hybrid heat pump.


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Thus, gas will still be used in both ordinary condensed gas boilers and in hybrid heat pumps in The Dutch gas industry intends to expand its production of green gas i. In rural areas locally produced biogas can be used. To be able to do this, however, the production of green gas must be scaled up drastically.

In addition to green gas, Gigler believes hydrogen will be an important sustainable alternative for natural gas in This can be produced by converting renewable electricity into hydrogen through electrolysis. The hydrogen currently being used in industrial processes is based on natural gas. This too then will require new investments.

The fourth and last alternative for the gas-fired boiler is a connection to a heating network, also called district heating. To evaluate the emissions from district heating, we need to know what source is used for heating. This can be waste heat from a power plant, factory or waste processing facility, but also geothermal heat. The big advantage of district heating compared to a heat pump is that houses do not necessarily need to be well insulated. Facilities that can do this are, for example, biomass-fired plants, waste-burning facilities, combined heat and power plants, geothermal wells and waste heat from industrial processes.

If houses are well insulated, lower temperatures may be used, in which case other sources can enter the picture,. As to costs, in the Netherlands the government sets a maximum price each year for heating networks, which does not exceed the price of natural gas for heating. So for consumers there are no added costs as long as this policy remains in place. The emission reductions that can be achieved with heating networks depend on the source of the heat. The biggest saving is achieved if waste heat from industry is used or geothermal heat.

The smallest saving occurs if the heat comes from a gas-fired CHP plant, i. But heating networks have disadvantages and limitations too. First of all not anybody can be connected to a network. That depends on the availability of heat and the distance between source and customer.

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For other parts of the Netherlands this can be different. Another disadvantage is that there will be long-term dependency on the heat supplier. This can lead to problems if the supplier moves away or closes. This can be a problem if there is demand for heat but the primary process is not running. These limitations can be partly addressed by connecting several sources to the network.

According to Gigler, heating networks should rely primarily on the existence of geothermal sources in the region. This would prevent lock-in of fossil-fuel supply sources. The locations of geothermal sources in the Netherlands are being investigated by IF Technology Dutch link. Suppose that we will disconnect , houses from the gas grid per year and that alternatives are deployed as sketched by the KVGN. And suppose that everyone invests in insulation in the coming 35 years. In the figure below we show the emission reduction potentials discussed earlier.

It shows that the total emission reduction depends on the availability of green gas, hydrogen and green electricity. Only if all heat pumps run on green power and sufficient green gas or green hydrogen is available for hybrid heat pumps and boilers can we be sure that the transition to a gas-less society delivers the results aimed for.

In short, the transition to gas-less heating is far from simple. Tailor-made solutions are necessary, and even more: additional investments in sustainable electricity generation, hydrogen and green gas. She has written this article as part of a traineeship at Energy Post.

1. Introduction

These two fuels are being used more efficiently in "cogeneration" plants. Cogeneration is not a new idea, and takes advantage of the way many large electricity users operate. Many factories use steam in their production process. Utilities often make and sell steam for these customers, as well as for running their own generators. Rather than simply condensing and exhausting waste-steam after it has passed thru the turbine, "top-cycle" cogenerators pipe this usable commodity to nearby customers. Recently developed cogeneration plants use new materials and designs to improve reliability, and control both thermal and atmospheric pollution.

Since these new technologies are designed into plants from the start, they are less expensive to install. The economy and capability of cogeneration technology allows many plants to return to burning coal without exceeding air-quality standards.


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Some natural gas plants can produce electricity without steam. They use turbines very much like those on jet-aircraft. Instead of burning jet-fuel and producing thrust, however, these units burn natural gas and power a generator. Gas-turbine generators have been popular for many years because they can be started quickly in response to temporary demand surges for electricity.

A newer twist is the "Combined-Cycle" plant which uses gas-turbines in this fashion, but then channels the hot exhaust gas to a boiler, which makes steam to turn another rotor. This substantially improves the overall efficiency of the generating plant. In addition to these innovations some thermal plants are being designed to burn "biomass. The term applies to waste wood or some other renewable plant material.

For example, Okeelanta Cogeneration Plant in Florida burns bagasse waste from surrounding sugar-cane processing operations during one part of the year, and waste wood during the growing season. Although there are some important technical and social differences, nuclear power stations are thermal plants that make electricity in much the same way as fossil-fuel plants.

The difference is that they generate steam by using the heat of atomic fission rather than by burning coal, oil, or gas. The steam then turns a generator as in other thermal plants. Nuclear plants don't use large amounts of fuel and do not refuel often, unlike a coal plant which must have train-loads of fuel shipped in regularly. The fact that green-house gasses and air-borne particulates are minimal during normal operation makes nuclear power attractive to many who are concerned about air-quality. Waste water is hotter than that from a fossil plant, and large cooling towers are designed to address this problem.

However, the drive to field nuclear power in the US faltered in the face of public concerns over safety, environmental, and economic issues. As more safety mechanisms were specified, construction costs and system complexities grew. Also, plants have shown some unexpected quirks, such as boiler tubes wearing out prematurely. Nuclear engineers contend that early problems with nuclear plants are subject to technical fixes, and are working on new "inherently safe" plant designs.

Opponents argue that simply using uranium and plutonium as fuel creates too many problems and risks, not worth any benefits the technology might have.

So far, one problem which has not been solved is that of disposing of spent fuel cores and contaminated accessories which may remain dangerous for thousands of years. Permanent burial in geologically stable locations is the plan being pursued at this time, though this is still very controversial. High-profile accidents at Three Mile Island in and Chernobyl in were, for the nuclear industry, public-relation disasters.

Continuing economic problems have made nuclear plants much less attractive investments. Hydro-electric plants and wind-mills also convert energy into electricity. Instead of heat energy, they use kinetic energy, or the energy of motion. Moving wind or water sometimes referred to as "white coal" spins a turbine, which in turn spins the rotor of a generator. Since no fuel is burned, no air pollution is produced.

Our energy

Wind and water are renewable resources and, while there have been many recent technical innovations, we have a long history of harnessing these energy sources. Problems exist even with these technologies, however. Two basic types of hydro-electric plants are in service. One type, a "run-of-river" plant, takes energy from a fast moving current to spin the turbine. The flow of water in most rivers can vary widely depending on the amount of rain-fall.

Hence, there are few suitable sites for run-of-river plants. Most hydro-electric plants use a reservoir to compensate for periods of drought, and to boost water-pressure in the turbines. These man-made lakes cover large areas, often creating picturesque sport and recreational facilities. The massive dams required are also handy for controlling floods. In the past, few questioned the common assumption that the benefits outweighed the costs.

These costs stem from the loss of land submerged by the reservoir. Dams have displaced people, and destroyed wild-life habitat and archeological sites. A dam-burst can be disasterous. Some environmental costs can be avoided by thoughtful design; using fish-ladders to permit fish to travel around a dam is one good example. These lines carry large amounts of electricity to substations in cities and towns. From the substations, distribution lines carry smaller amounts of electricity to houses and businesses. Electricity travels to users through transmission lines and substations.

Different types of generators are used to create energy. Turbines are machines for producing continuous power. In power stations, turbines are turned using energy from sources such as heat, wind and moving water. Electricity travels at the speed of light — that's almost , kilometres per second! In a power plant, the turbine and generator change mechanical energy into electrical energy. The electricity we use in our homes, schools and businesses is generated in power stations.

Here, spinning turbines turn large magnets within wire coils. This causes electrons to move, which results in electricity. How do we Generate it? In a Flash Energy is generated from both fossil fuels and renewable energy sources.