Understanding the Language

Understanding the Language

Alternating current – A periodic current the average value of which over the period is zero. A current that reverses at regularly recurring intervals of time and that has alternatively positive and negative values.

Ash – The residual inorganic material left after combusting coal.

Baseload power plant – Provide power to the grid between 20 – 100 percent of the system load during annual hours.

Boiler sludge – Boiler water solids which settle out in headers‚ in drums and on the boiler surface.

Boiler – A vessel in which water is heated.

Calorific value is the amount of heat released during the combustion of a specific amount.

Capacity – The load for which a generator‚ turbine‚ transformer‚ transmission circuit or system is rated.

Cogeneration – A generating facility that produces electricity and another form of useful thermal energy used for industrial‚ commercial‚ and heating and cooling purposes.

Combined cycle plant – both a steam turbine and gas turbine produce electricity

Combine-cycle cogeneration plant – both a steam turbine and gas turbine produce electricity and process steam

Critical boilers – Boilers in which pressures exceed 221.72 bar and 375C

Direct current – Unidirectional current; a practically nonpulsating current.

Economic efficiency = (Production costs / Energy output) – Refers to the cost to produce one unit of electricity

Electric generators – rotating machines that convert mechanical energy to electrical energy.

Feedwater – The total flow of water supplied to the boiler; the sum of condensate and makeup water.

Fission – Process in which a heavy nucleus splits into two or more large fragments and releases kinetic energy.

Generation – The act or process of producing electric energy from other forms of energy.

Heat Rate = (Heat supplied/Energy Output) – The fuel required to generate one unit of electricity

Heating plant – location where only steam or hot water is produced

Installed capacity – The sum of the capacities in a powerplant or power system as shown by the nameplate ratings.

IGCC – Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle Plant turns coal into gas (synthsis gas). It them removes impurities from the coal gas before combustion resulting in lower emissions.

Intermediate – Provide between 5 – 20 percent of annual demand hours

1 kilowatt – 1.341 horsepower

A kilowatt hour is a unit of energy and is the product of power in kilowatts and time in hours. It is not kilowatts per hour.

Load factor = (Minimum demand / average demand) – Refers to the steadiness of the load factor over time

Megawatt (MW) – One thousand kilowatts or 1 million watts. One megawatt is enough power to power 1‚000 homes on average.

Net summer capability – A common measure of generating capacity‚ defined as the steady hourly output that generating equipment is expected to supply to the system load‚ exclusive of auxiliary power

Nuclear core – Region within a reactor occupied by the nuclear fuel that supports the fission chain reaction.

Peaking power plants – Provide power during the highest 5% of annual demand hours

Power Factor – The ratio of the circuit power (watts) to the circuit volt amperes.

Power Plant – location where only electricity is produced

Quadrillion btu – Equivalent to 10^5 British thermal units

Rated capacity – The electrical load for which a generator‚ turbine or power is system is rated.

Reaction turbine – A turbine which uses both kinetic energy and the pressure of the water column to produce power. Francis‚ Kaplan and fixed-blad turbines are all reaction turbines.

Renewable energy – Energy obtained from sources that are essentially inexhaustible‚ such as wood waste‚ solar and wind.

Sub-critical Boiler – Boilers in which pressure are below 220 bar and 375C

Thermal efficiency (Desired Energy Output / Energy Cost) – The desired energy output is the shaft work‚ and the energy that it costs is the heat input to the boiler (steam plant example).

Transmission – The transporting of electric energy in bulk to a convenient point‚ where it is subdivided for delivery to the distribution system.

Types of coal – Anthracite‚ Bituminous‚ Sub bituminous‚ Lignite

Watt – The basic electrical unit of power or rate of dong work. The rate of energy transfer equivalent to one ampere flowing under a pressure of one volt at unity power factor. One horsepower is equivalent to approximately 746 watts.

Ultra Supercritical boilers – Boilers in which pressures exceed 305 bar and 600C

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