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An introduction to energy resources
An introduction to energy resources

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Friday, 1 Jul 2022, 18:00
Site: Open Learning
Course: An introduction to energy resources (S278_2)
Glossary: S278_2 Glossary
F

Fuels

Materials capable of liberating energy by nuclear and chemical reactions, including combustion. They commonly have a high energy density.
H

Hydrocarbons

Organic compounds, such as methane, that contain only hydrogen and carbon.

Hydropower

Conversion of the potential energy of water in rivers or reservoirs to electricity, by using the kinetic energy that is released when it flows to turn turbines. Because rainfall stems from water vapour evaporated from the ocean surface, hydropower is an indirect form of solar energy.
J

Joule (J)

The SI unit of energy and work. A joule (J) of work is done when a force of one newton moves an object through a distance of one metre.
K

Kinetic energy

Mechanical energy that exists by virtue of movement. For example, a car engine turns chemical energy (petrol) through heat into movement (engine parts and road wheels).
M

Marine carbon cycle

That part of the carbon cycle that involves the circulation of carbon in seawater through biological activity and inorganic processes.

Methane

CH4; a gaseous hydrocarbon that is the main component of natural gas.
N

Newton

The force that gives a mass of one kilogram (kg) an acceleration of one metre per second per second (m s−2), and is therefore equivalent to 1 kg m s−2.

Non-renewable energy

Energy resources that are replenished naturally over extended timescales of thousands or millions of years. As they are exploited faster than they are replenished they are considered as non-renewable.
P

Photosynthesis

A chemical reaction in green plants in which carbon dioxide from the atmosphere combines with water to form carbohydrates, using the energy of solar radiation.