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Essay on Non-Conventional Sources of Energy

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We are providing many paragraphs, long essay in very simple language with the boundaries of different words here.  Here you can find Essay on Non-Conventional Sources of Energy in English language for students in 1000 words. In this article cover Topic :: Define non-conventional sources of energy, About various programmes started by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Introduction, advantages, disadvantages and importance of each non-conventional source of energy, Initiations of the government to promote each energy and Importance of non-conventional sources of energy as the alternative sources.

Non-conventional sources of energy are the ones which are endowed upon us by nature. They are renewable, inexhaustible and cause no environmental pollution. These include the sun, wind, oceans, dams, nuclear material and biomass.

India is a land of rich natural resources, thus has the potential of utilising the non-conventional sources of energy at its best. The need for the exploitation of its natural resources was felt in the wake of the sudden increase in the price of oil, uncertainties associated with its supply and the adverse impact created on the

Balance Of Payments (BOPs) situation. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) is the nodal ministry of the Government of India for management, use and other matters related to the non-conventional sources of energy.

The ministry has facilitated many programmes including harnessing renewable power, renewable energy to rural areas for lighting, cooking and motive power, use of renewable energy in urban, industrial and commercial applicabions and development of alternate fuels and applications. The Ministry of Non and Renewable Energy organised the first Renewable Energy Global Investors Meet and Expo (RE-Invest) in 2015 in New Delhi. The central theme of the 'RE-Invest' initiative was to attract large scale investments for the renewable energy sector in India.

The non-conventional sources of energy have been discussed in detail below:

Solar Energy

The energy obtained from the sun is called as the solar energy. Due to India's strategic location, India has a huge solar potential. The exploitation of solar energy can be done through thermal and photovoltaic routes. It can be utilised for heating and generation of electricity. This form of energy can be manifested through the solar cookers, solar panels, photovoltaic cells, solar heaters etc.

The main advantage of solar energy is that it is environment friendly and does not contribute to any form of pollution. The solar panels are easy to install and can be installed on rooftops of houses, schools, colleges, and office buildings. Besides, the government provides great deals and subsidies on installation of solar panels. Solar cookers and solar water heaters reduce dependence on electricity.

The National Solar Mission of India is also known as Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission. It aims at promoting the use of solar energy for power generation and other applications. The objective of this programme IS to establish India as a global leader in the solar energy sector.

The Welspun Solar project in Neemuch, Madhya Pradesh is the largest solar power plant in Asia. The Rewa Solar Project is the world's largest solar power plant. Besides, Guj;ra1, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu are the most solar-developed states of the country The major disadvantage of solar power is that the initial cost of installation of :,olar power plants is high. The solar power plants do not have any recurri ng cots

Wind Energy

Wind energy is the harnessing of wind power to produce electricity. The kinetic energy of wind is converted into electrical energy. When the solar radiations fall on the surface of the Earth, different regions are heated to different degrees because of Earth's curvature. This heating is highest at the equator and lowest at the poks.

The flow of air from warmer to cooler regions leads to wind formation and this airflow is harnessed in windmills and wind turbines to produce power. This form of energy has been used for grinding corn, pumping water and sailing ships for centuries. The wind turbines are used for the production of electricity. Wind turbines convert the kinetic energy of the moving wind into electricity. This is commonly found in the coastal regions.

The main advantage of wind turbines is that they take up less space than the average power station. The land around the wind turbines can be used for agriculture or grazing of animals. Follow land in mountainous or countryside locations can be put to good use by installation of wind turbines.

The main disadvantage regarding wind power is the unreliability factor. In many areas, the wind strength is too low to support a wind turbine or wind farm, and this is where the use of solar power or geothermal power could be great alternatives. Wind turbines generally produce less electricity than the average fossil fuelled power station, requiring multiple wind turbines to be built in order to make an impact. The noise pollution from commercial wind turbines is also a great disadvantage of wind power.

Biomass Energy

Biomass is the organic material derived from plants and animals. Through the process of photosynthesis, chlorophyll present in plants absorbs the energy from the sun by converting the carbon-dioxide present in air and water from the ground into carbohydrates. Biomass energy is contained inside all plants and animals. Biomass has always been an important energy source considering the benefits it offers. It is renewable, widely available, carbon-neutral and has the potential to provide significant employment in the rural areas.

Biomass materials used for power generation include bagasse, rice husk, straw, cotton stalk, coconut shells, soya husk, de-oiled cakes, coffee waste, jute wastes, groundnut shells, saw dust etc. The only disadvantage of biomass energy is that burning qf biomass emits carbon-dioxide, but carbon-dioxide released by it is largely balanced by the carbon dioxide captured in its own growth. Biomass could contribute a great deal to global warming and particulate pollution if it is burned directly.

Biogas

Biogas is based upon the use of cow dung to produce gas which is used as domestic fuel especially in rural areas. The biogas techniques are generally based on the decomposition of organic matters which contain methane 55% and carbon dioxide 45%. This energy can be used for cooking and lightening in rural areas. India has also huge resource of biogas, which can be used for replacing diesel oil. Biogas has higher thermal efficiency than kerosene, firewood, charcoal etc. The Community and Institutional Biogas Plants programme was initiated in 1982-83.

National Biogas and Manure Management Programme (NBMMP) provides for setting up of family type biogas plants in rural and semi-urban households. It provided clean gaseous cooking fuel and organic manure to rural households through family type biogas plants. This programme also aims at reducing pressure on forests, improving sanitation by linking sanitary toilets with biogas plants, and mitigating and combating climate change by preventing emission of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane into the atmosphere.

Ocean Energy

India has a long coastline with the estuaries and gulfs where tides are strong enough to move turbines for electrical power generation. The different types of ocean energy include

  • Wave energy:  It is generated by the movement of a device either floating on the surface of the ocean or moored to the ocean floor. Wave conversion devices that float on the surface have joints hinged together that bend with the waves. This kinetic energy pumps fluid through turbines and creates electric power.
  • Tidal energy : The tidal cycle occurs every 12 hours due to the gravitational force the moon exerts on the earth. The difference in water height from low tide and high tide is potential energy. Similar to traditional hydropower generated from dams, tidal water can be captured in a barrage across an estuary during high tide and forced through a hydro-turbine during low tide.
  • Current energy:  Marine current is ocean water moving in one direction. This ocean current is known as the Gulf Stream. Tides also create currents that flow in two directions. Kinetic energy can be captured from the Gulf Stream and other tidal currents with submerged turbines that are very similar in appearance to miniature wind turbines. As with wind turbines, the constant movement of the marine current moves the rotor blades to generate electric power.
  • Ocean Thermal Energy: Conversion (OTEC) Ocean thermal energy conversion, or OTEC, uses ocean temperature differences from the surface to depths lower than 1000 meters, to extract energy. A temperature difference of only 20°C can yield usable energy.

The main advantages of ocean energy are that it is renewable, environment friendly, abundant and doesn't cause any damage to the land. The major limitation of this form of energy is that only the power plants and lands which are located in coastal areas are benefitted from it

Nuclear Energy

Nuclear power is the fourth largest source of electricity in India after theermal, hydroelectric and renewable sources of energy. There are nuclear power plants and reactors across the country which produce nuclear energy. India has recently signed pacts wi.th the US for setting up new nuclear power plants.

Nuclear power is a highly reliable form of energy. Nuclear Power Plants except in drastic situations continue to run reliably for the whole day without any changes. Large amounts of nuclear energy can be produced from the fission of radioactive elements like Uranium. Nuclear energy has  a host of benefits. The cost of nuclear fuel is relatively very low compared to other energy sources like coal and gas. Nuclear electricity does not cause air pollution from the combustion of fossil fuels. This makes them very attractive as a source of cheap, non carbon dioxide producing electricity.

Nuclear radiations and accidents are the most harmful effects of the Nuclear material . Nuclear radiations are absorbed by the body cells and then interact with them to produce irreversible mutations. These cellular mutations are then possed on to the future generations through heredity. They can result in many disorders of the body and the brain. Such as skin disorders, blood cancer, brain damage and severe mental retardation. Disposal of nuclear waste, high capital investment and low gestation periods are some of the other disadvantages.

Hydroelectricity

Hydroelectricity is the production of electrical power using the gravitational force of falling water. Multipurpose river valley projects and dams are involved in the production of hydroelectricity. This form of energy plays an important role in reducing the greenhouse emissions. The fuel for these dcvices is water which is available free of cost and in abundance.

National Hydroelectric Power Corporation Limited was set up in 1975 and has now become the largest organisation for hydro power development in the country. It has capabilities to undertake all activities from conceptualisation to comm1ss1oning of hydro power projects. The main disadvantage of hydroelectricity is that the large reservoirs associated with multipurpose river valley projects can lead to ecosystem damage and loss of land. Also, there may be the relocation of the people living nearby.

Geothermal Energy

Geothermal energy is basically the thermal energy generated and stored in the Earth. The main source of the energy is the geothermal gradient which is the temperature difference between the Earth's core and its surface. Geothermal energy from hot springs been used since ancient times for bathing and space heating. It is now used across the world for electricity generation.

India has a vast potential for geothermal energy. The Geological Survey 0f India has identified more than 300 hot spring locations across the country Some of these regions :.ire Himalayan geothermal province, Andaman-Nicobar islands geothermal province, Son-Na<mada-Tapi region, Mahanadi and Godavari Valley. However, no geothermal plant has been set up in India due to wide availability of fossil fuels. However, the government has announced a plan to develop the country's first geothermal power facility in Chhattisgarh.

The main advantages of geothermal energy are its cost-effectiveness, reliability and environment friendliness. The major limitations are that it is limited to areas near tectonic plate boundaries and possibility of leakage of harmful gases from the Earth's interiors. Therefore, it is recognised that non-conventional or alternative sources of supply will undoubtedly play an increasing role in development as growth proceeds. The importance of these alternative energy sources in the energy mix within the region and with respect to their environmental impacts is enormous.

It takes million of years for the fossil fuels to replenish themselves. It becomes our duty to preserve them for the future generation. This is why we must shift our focus from the use of renewable resources to non-renewable resources of energy.

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