How is electrical power generated??
The combustion of fossil fuels is one of the most common methods used togenerate electrical power. In this process,the heat of combustion is converted tosteam that drives a turbine which drives agenerator.
An alternative approach that has the potential to achieve close to 100 %efficiency involves the use of fuel cells.
Important Applications of RedoxReactions: Fuel Cells
•In a fuel cell, the reactants are used to produceelectrical power directly through coupled oxidationand reduction ½-reactions.•What are some limitations (i.e., why not morewidely used)?-cost/MW is high (but decreasing)-most efficient fuel sources can be dangerous•typical efficiency: 30-35%; best: ~ 40%•automobile efficiency: ~20%