Electric Power Generation – ElectricalEngineering.XYZ

Electric power generation also known as electricity generation or power generation is the process of generating electric power from different sources. Electrical energy is not freely available in nature, rather it should be produced from other energy sources available in nature. Examples of energy sources include coal, wind, sun, and water. Energy in power stations is generated by electromechanical generators driven by turbines or by heat engines fueled by combustion or nuclear fusion. Sometimes energy is generated from photovoltaics or geothermal power.

The ultimate knowledge source on Electric Power Generation by ElectricalEngineering.XYZ

Sources of Energy

Crrently there are five main sources of energy that are available for power generation.


The Sun is the primary source of energy which can be used for producing power. Two prominent methods for producing energy from sun is:

  1. Using solar panels
  2. Using solar raidators


Wind is another source of energy that can be used to run wind turbines which drives wind generators


When water is stored at a certain height (given a certain head), it possesses potential energy. Turbines are synchronized to the alternators. When water is allowed to fall on the turbine it converts mechanical energy into electrical energy.


Nuclear fuel have capability of producing huge amount of energy. Nuclear fuels are employed in nuclear power station where the nuclear energyis used to generate heat, which is then used in steam turbines for producing electricity.


Heat energy obtained from coal is used to drive steam turbines that are synchronized with alternators.

Types of Electric Power Generation Plants

A power plant is an industrial facility and a generation unit that generates electricity from primary energy. A power plant uses one or more generators that convert mechanical energy into electrical energy. Inside most powerplants, there is a prime mover coupled to an alternator for the production of electric power. Example of prime mover includes a steam turbine and water turbines. A prime mover converts energy from some other form into mechanical energy. The alternator coupled with the prime mover converts the mechanical energy of the prime mover into electrical energy. The electrical energy generated is then transmitted and distributed with the help of conductors to consumers.

Power PlantDetail
Hydropower plantThe power plant that utilizes the potential energy of water at a high level for the generation of
electrical energy.
Nuclear power plantA generating station in which nuclear energy is converted into electrical energy
Coal power plantA generating plant that converts the heat energy of coal combustion into electrical energy. It is also known
as a steam power station
Diesel Power PlantA power plant in which a diesel engine is used as the prime mover for the generation of electrical
Solar power plantsArrays of solar panels that are used for converting solar energy into electricity. Solar power plants utilize thermal energy from the sun.
Wind power plantsThe wind energy is used to drive the wind turbines which drive generators

Economics of Power Generation

The actual price of electric power varies considerably around the world. It ranges from few cents to half a dollar (approx).

Electrical Engineers are always interested in determining the optimal cost of energy per unit (one kWh).

Power Generation by Countries

Given below is list of energy

Sr. noCountryPower Generation
1CHINA5883 billion kWh
2UNITED STATES4095 billion kWh
3INDIA1386 billion kWh
4RUSSIA1031 billion kWh
5JAPAN989.3 billion kWh
6CANADA649.6 billion kWh
7GERMANY612.8 billion kWh
8BRAZIL567.9 billion kWh
9FRANCE529.1 billion kWh
10KOREA, SOUTH526 billion kWh
Source Link: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/resources/the-world-factbook/fields/252rank.html

More Links on Electric Power Generation:

  1. Power Generation MCQs

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