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Energy Resources. Renewable Resources Resources that are naturally replenished or regenerated over a short time span – it is renewed on a human time scale i.e. Trees, biofuels (?). Nonrenewable Resources

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Energy Resources

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Energy resources

Energy Resources

Renewable vs nonrenewable

Renewable Resources

Resources that are naturally replenished or regenerated over a short time span – it is renewed on a human time scale

i.e. Trees, biofuels (?)

Nonrenewable Resources

Resources that are consumed faster than they can be replenished, it is not renewed on a human time scale

i.e. fossil fuels, aluminum, etc.

Renewable vs. Nonrenewable

Sources of energy

Sources of Energy

Sources of energy1

Sources of Energy

  • Nonrenewable sources

    • Petroleum (38%)

    • Coal (22%)

    • Natural Gas (25%)

    • Nuclear (8%)

  • Renewable sources

    • Hydroelectric (4%)

    • Solar

    • Wind

    • Tidal

    • Geothermal

    • Biofuels

Trends in energy usage

Trends in Energy Usage

Energy resources


  • Organic materials that have escaped oxidation in the carbon cycle.

  • Plant material that is rapidly buried

Coal ranking formation

Coal Ranking & Formation

Rank – amount (%) of carbon (C) in coal , heat content

  • Peat (pre coal) – soft brown mass of compressed, largely non-decomposed plant material, ~50% C

  • Lignite – decomposed peat that has been compressed, ~70% C

  • Bituminous coal – burial increases the pressure and temperature on the lignite and causes a conversion, ~80-90% C

  • Anthracite coal – complete metamorphism, >93% C

World wide distribution of coal

World-wide distribution of coal

U s coal reserves

U.S. Coal Reserves

Illinois coal reserves

Illinois Coal Reserves



  • Composed of hydrogen and carbon linked together in chains and rings

  • Natural Gas – simple organic molecules

  • Crude Oil – complex chains and rings

What is the source of oil



What is the source of oil?

  • Plankton!

Hydrocarbon formation

Hydrocarbon Formation

  • Water borne plankton escape oxidation/decomposition before burial

  • Plankton is deposited in mud (shale) – Source Rock

  • Source rock is overlain by more sediment – increasing the pressure (P) & temperature (T) on the source rock

  • Increase in P & T, breaks down organic debris

    • Oil forms at 50oC

    • Methane (natural gas) at 100oC

  • Hydrocarbons migrates upwards (lower density than water) to a reservoir rock (high porosity, high permeability rock)

  • Migration is stopped by either an impermeable rock or a structural trap

Oil window

“Oil Window”

  • Generation of oil requires a specific temperature range 80 – 160 Co (If above this temperature oil will “burn away”)

  • Higher temperatures breakdown oil molecules – generate natural gas

  • Exist in the top most 15-20% of the crust

Reservoir rock

Reservoir Rock

  • Porosity – amount of open (void) space in a rock, ability of a rock to store a fluid

  • Permeability – interconnectedness of the void space, ability of rock to transmit a fluid

  • Reservoir rock – high porosity, high permeability

  • Cap (seal) rock – low porosity, low permeability

Structural traps

Structural Traps

  • 4 common types

    • Anticline Trap

    • Salt Dome

    • Fault Trap

    • Angular Unconformity Trap

Distribution of oil and gas

Distribution of Oil and Gas

  • Found in rocks less than 500 million years old

  • 85% of oil and gas occur in less than 5% of producing fields

  • Generally, near Tectonic belts, active in the past 60-70 million years

Daily assignment

Daily Assignment

  • Create a concept map that incorporates the following:


    Plant MaterialPlankton



    Labels the pathways-transition between the components appropriately

    Additional items may be included if you feel they help understand the concepts.

Nuclear power uranium

Nuclear Power - Uranium

  • Uranium (U) – used for nuclear power

  • Has a Minimum Concentration Factor > 1000

  • Source Rock – Igneous

  • U is leached (dissolved) into groundwater

  • Deposit Types

    • Sandstones that have been enriched with U minerals (groundwater enrichment)

    • U-bearing minerals in rock fractures

    • Placer Deposits

Geothermal energy

Geothermal Energy

  • Temperature increases with depth ~ 3oC/ 100 m

  • Geothermal energy concentrated where magma is near the surface

  • Circulation of groundwater allows water to heat up

  • Hot groundwater drives turbines

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