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Power Stations

In this worksheet, students will learn about how power stations create the energy that we use our homes and schools.

'Power Stations' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 3

Curriculum topic:  Physics: Energy

Curriculum subtopic:  Calculation of Fuel Uses and Costs

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

What do your computer, television, fridge freezer have in common? 

 

They all require electricity to work. Most of the energy that you use in the home is in the form of electricity. This electricity comes from power stations like the one shown below:

 

Power station
Power station cooling towers

 

Power stations generate electricity by using a fuel to generate heat that heats water to produce steam. The steam is then used to turn large turbines. The kinetic energy of the turbine is converted into electrical energy by a generator. This process is shown in the following diagram:

 

Diagram of power station

 

In the diagram shown above the fuel used is coal. Coal is a fossil fuel.

 

Fossil fuels were formed from dead plants and animals kept under pressure for millions of years. Coal, oil and natural gas are all fossil fuels. 

 

Fossil fuels are described as being finite or non-renewable energy sources. This means that they are running out and cannot be replaced.  They also produce polluting gases such as carbon dioxide when they burn, which contributes to global warming.

 

Scientists are currently working on finding and developing alternative sources of energy including renewable fuels. 

 

Wind farm Solar panels Hydroelectric power Nuclear energy

 

Wind Energy - Wind energy can be used to turn a turbine to generate electricity but they do rely on the wind blowing. Wind turbines don't pollute the atmosphere but they do create noise pollution and some people are of the opinion that they ruin the look of the landscape. 

 

Solar Energy - Solar panels change sunlight into electricity. They do rely on sunlight and have to be very large to generate a lot of electricity.

 

Hydroelectricity - Uses energy from water that runs from rivers or dams to turn turbines to generate electricity. This creates no pollution but can damage the landscape and is very expensive to set up.

 

Nuclear - Nuclear power produces a lot of energy but also creates radioactive nuclear waste and can be dangerous if rigorous safety standards are not met. The danger of nuclear energy was clearly demonstrated by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986 and the Fukushima disaster in 2011.

Which TWO of the following are not classed as fossil fuels?

Solar

Oil

Natural gas

Nuclear

Coal

Using the table below, decide whether each of the energy sources listed below are renewable or non-renewable sources of energy?

 Renewable EnergyNon-Renewable Energy
Coal
Wind
Solar
Oil
Natural gas
Hydroelectric

What form is most of the energy that is used in the home?

kinetic energy

electrical energy

thermal energy

The fossil fuels, coal, oil and gas, are running out and cannot be replaced.

 

What is the term is used to describe the fact that fossil fuels are running out?

renewable

finite

organic

There are seven nuclear power plants in Britain that generate one fifth of Britain's electricity.

 

Use the table below to list the advantages and disadvantages of nuclear power. 

 AdvantageDisadvantage
No carbon dioxide produced
Nuclear waste
Produce lots of power
Dangerous if not controlled

Whitelee Wind Farm, which is located just outside Glasgow, is Europe's largest on-shore wind farm.

 

Use the table below to list the advantages of wind power over more conventional coal fired power plants.

 AdvantageDisadvantage
Renewable
No carbon dioxide production
Damage appearance of landscape
Noise pollution
Can affect wildlife

Solar panels are becoming a common site on the roof of many houses.

 

What do solar panels convert into electrical energy?

sound

light

wind

  • Question 1

Which TWO of the following are not classed as fossil fuels?

CORRECT ANSWER
Solar
Nuclear
EDDIE SAYS
Coal, oil and natural gas are the three main fossil fuels.
  • Question 2

Using the table below, decide whether each of the energy sources listed below are renewable or non-renewable sources of energy?

CORRECT ANSWER
 Renewable EnergyNon-Renewable Energy
Coal
Wind
Solar
Oil
Natural gas
Hydroelectric
EDDIE SAYS
There are more renewable fuels such as alcohol, which is produced from sugar cane and is used to fuel cars in some countries such as Brazil.
  • Question 3

What form is most of the energy that is used in the home?

CORRECT ANSWER
electrical energy
EDDIE SAYS
Think of all the electrical appliances in your home. Life would be very different without them.
  • Question 4

The fossil fuels, coal, oil and gas, are running out and cannot be replaced.

 

What is the term is used to describe the fact that fossil fuels are running out?

CORRECT ANSWER
finite
EDDIE SAYS
Alternative sources of energy are required as we are still largely dependent on fossil fuels that are finite.
  • Question 5

There are seven nuclear power plants in Britain that generate one fifth of Britain's electricity.

 

Use the table below to list the advantages and disadvantages of nuclear power. 

CORRECT ANSWER
 AdvantageDisadvantage
No carbon dioxide produced
Nuclear waste
Produce lots of power
Dangerous if not controlled
EDDIE SAYS
Nuclear power plants are controversial but the British Government are looking to create more in order to meet our ever-increasing demands for energy.
  • Question 6

Whitelee Wind Farm, which is located just outside Glasgow, is Europe's largest on-shore wind farm.

 

Use the table below to list the advantages of wind power over more conventional coal fired power plants.

CORRECT ANSWER
 AdvantageDisadvantage
Renewable
No carbon dioxide production
Damage appearance of landscape
Noise pollution
Can affect wildlife
EDDIE SAYS
Windfarms generate lots of electricity but the wind must be blowing to turn these huge turbines.
  • Question 7

Solar panels are becoming a common site on the roof of many houses.

 

What do solar panels convert into electrical energy?

CORRECT ANSWER
light
EDDIE SAYS
Solar panels convert light energy into electrical energy. The government provides incentives for home owners if they fit solar panels but at present solar panels are still very expensive to buy and install.
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