USES OF ENERGY
Energy for Transport
Transportation is important. Even in the olden times, people needed transportation for various purposes. But transportation then, was extremely slow. Then the steam engine was invented and it made use of energy from coal. Later, the internal combustion engine was invented. It used energy released by rapidly burning fuels inside its cylinders. This made motor vehicles possible. As the technology improved, other forms of transportation appeared all using different forms of energy.
Energy for Communication
All forms of communication require energy. We need energy both to create a message and to send it. Because of the need for energy, communicating over large distances was difficult before the use of electricity. The first large-scale form of communication that made use of electricity was the telegraph. With the help of technology, other instruments were made like telephone, e-mail etc.
Energy at Home
For thousands of years, people have used energy to cook their food, to provide heat and light in their homes etc. The energy was usually obtained from fire i.e. by burning wood, oil or candles. In the 19th century coal gas was used as a domestic fuel. Later, electricity was used in the form of powerful electric generators, which supplied electricity to homes. Electricity provides the energy for the increasing appliances.
USES OF ELECTRICITY
Electricity is the most convenient form of energy that is used in homes and industries. Electricity needs to produced or generated. There are many ways to generate a voltage. The best way is to use electromagnetism. When a metal moves through a “magnetic field” a voltage is produced. Using this effect, many machines were developed, the most common of which were the steam engines and water turbines. These were often turning large generators to make electricity for homes, offices and factories. One important invention was the steam turbine. It was used to enable electricity to be generated on a large scale. Steam engines are still used to drive most generators.
In the late 19th century, electricity-generating power stations were being installed in many cities. Today, electricity is such a familiar word that it is simply called power. The majority of modern power stations use turbines to turn generators. These turbines are turned by running water in hydroelectric power stations or by steam obtained from water boiled by the heat from burning coal, oil or some other source.
Electricity in Homes
Electricity’s first major use was for lighting. People could turn on or turn off lights at the flick of a switch. This was contrary to struggling with gas lights, oil lamps or candles. Electricity was safer than flames of candles or gas. Now, we use electricity foe every other thing. Electricity has made our lives simpler.
As soon as electricity was available, people began to think up new uses for it. They invented appliances that made life simpler. Most early appliances used the ability of electricity to generate heat. For example – hair curling tongs, electric iron etc. Then, the evolution of electric motors had electricity converted into movement. Now, we have innumerable appliances that run on electricity.
Electricity and medicine
Used carefully, electricity can diagnose a disease, heal it and cure it. We have electrically heated scalpels that can slice and seal small blood vessels. Controlled currents passing through tissues can relieve pain. Delicate surgeries can be performed with electrical laser scalpels