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Author Topic: What other forms of energy may thermal energy be converted into?  (Read 9610 times)

Offline ValidusNrg

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I was just wondering... what other types of energy can thermal energy be converted to?  I mean... you can run electricity through a wire, and produce thermal energy, so what can you do with the thermal energy?  It seems like once energy goes thermal, it's dead energy.  Any comments will be greatly apprectiated, as I have a small dilema.  Thank you.
« Last Edit: 03/05/2009 23:36:56 by chris »


 

Offline ValidusNrg

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No one has an answer to this question?  I would really like to know what I can do with heat... please?
 

Offline Ultima

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Any where there is a difference in thermal energy such as in the atmosphere or within water you get movement "kinetic" energy due to differences in pressure or expansion, wind moving from high to low etc. This can then be used to turn turbines and return it back to electricity.

wOw the world spins?
« Last Edit: 12/01/2005 00:03:08 by Ultima »
 

Offline gsmollin

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You are asking for a "heat engine". If you Google that term, you will see many answers. Here is one:
http://www.taftan.com/thermodynamics/HENGINE.HTM

In your example of running electricity through a wire and producing heat, you have an example of an irreversible process in thermodynamics. There is no backwards-process for that. If I heat a wire, it will not generate electricity. There are many examples of irreversible processes, and there are thermodynamic laws that govern these processes. In this case, the second law of thermodynamics governs the irreversibility. Here is a link to the second law:
http://www.entropysite.com/students_approach.html

You have asked a question with answers that are both subtle and sublime. You would be rewarded to pursue your interest and study some thermodynamics. Good luck.
 

Offline wembley

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"If I heat a wire, it will not generate electricity. "

Hmmm...but those IR photons can be converted back into electricity...
 

Offline Ylide

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    • http://clem.mscd.edu/~mogavero
Realistically speaking, the only thing that is done to convert heat into useful energy is the heating of water which produces steam which, as Ultima said, turns turbines and generates electricity.  This isn't terribly efficient and takes a great deal of heat.  You're not going to capture the heat lost from a conductor with current flowing through it and do anything useful with it.  





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Offline Ultima

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Plus if you take a thermocouple and cause a differential in heat around the junction you get a current flowing???

wOw the world spins?
 

Offline gsmollin

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quote:
Originally posted by wembley


"If I heat a wire, it will not generate electricity. "

Hmmm...but those IR photons can be converted back into electricity...



SOME of those IR photons can be converted back into electricity, if they are used to power a heat engine. The heat engine's efficiency is goverened by the second law as well.
 

Offline gsmollin

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quote:
Originally posted by Ultima

Plus if you take a thermocouple and cause a differential in heat around the junction you get a current flowing???

wOw the world spins?



This is another example of a heat engine. Thermoelectric generators are used to power spacecraft in outer-planet missions. They are powered by the heat of radioactive decay, and cooled by radiation to space. The thermoelectric generators have an efficiency of about 5%.
 

Offline jeromeacremant

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I AM supposed to simulate a 50 kWe steam turbine.what proceedures can i use?
 

lyner

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I AM supposed to simulate a 50 kWe steam turbine.what proceedures can i use?

You'd need to be a but more specific.
 

Offline lightarrow

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Realistically speaking, the only thing that is done to convert heat into useful energy is the heating of water which produces steam
Do you live in the XIX century?  ;)
There are a lot of ways to convert heat into useful energy. Apart those already mentioned, another is Stirling Engine.
Another is this one:
http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1991nce..conf..173W

Another (don't know the name) exploits Lorentz' force: heat is used to vaporise and ionize a low-ionization energy chemical (Caesium or others) which goes through a pipe into which is present a static magnetic field orthogonal to the pipe's axis. The charged particles separates along two sides of the pipe, generatig an emf.

Another (claimed) would be this one:
http://peswiki.com/index.php/Directory:Eneco_power_chip
 

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