Most countries are shifting from highly polluting fossil fuels to low-carbon alternatives that need various power plants to generate energy. 

FREMONT, CA: Nuclear, coal, and wind energy are just three of the many types of energy utilized to produce electricity in power plants worldwide. 

As several countries continue to shift away from high-polluting fossil fuels and more towards low-carbon alternative solutions, the trend of how and where power plants operate is shifting.

A power plant is a type of industrial facility that produces electricity using primary energy. Maximum of the power plants rely on one or more generators to transform mechanical energy into electrical energy to supply power to the electrical grid for societal needs.

Solar power plants are an exception, as they generate electricity using photovoltaic cells rather than a turbine.

Types of power plants for energy generation

Nuclear power plants

Nuclear power plants create a considerable amount of electricity by utilizing a nuclear fission reaction and uranium as fuel. Since nuclear power plants are a low-carbon energy source, the technology is hugely regarded as a more environment-friendly choice.

Nuclear power plants are also assumed to be more trustworthy than renewable energy sources like solar and wind. Even though the investment necessary to bring a nuclear power plant online is massive, the operating expense is relatively low.

Hydroelectric power plants

The gravitational force of flowing water is used to generate hydroelectricity. Hydroelectric power plants release fewer greenhouse gases than fossil fuel-powered energy plants. The construction of hydroelectric power plants and dams involves a considerable investment.

As per the International Hydropower Association's 2017 Hydropower Status Report, an approximate 31.5 gigatons (GW) of hydropower capacity was constructed in 2016, bringing the total installed capacity 1,246 GW.

Diesel-fired power plants

Such type of power plant runs on diesel and is used for small-scale generation of electric power. They are implemented in areas where alternative power sources are not readily available and are used mainly as a backup for uninterrupted power supply during outages.

Diesel plants need less space to install and have higher thermal efficiency than coal-fired power plants.

Geothermal power plants

Dry steam power stations, flash steam power stations, and binary cycle power stations are the three major types of geothermal plants.Each one of them use steam turbines to generate electricity.

Compared to coal-fired power plants, geothermal power plants are considered more environment-friendly because they generate lower levels of harmful gases.