Electric power. Coal-fired power plants burn coal to make steam and the steam turns turbines (machines for generating rotary mechanical power) to generate electricity.Industry. Many industries use coal and coal byproducts. …Converting coal into gas and liquids. …
People also ask
How is coal used to generate electricity in the US?
The coal is burned and the heat given off is used to convert water into steam, which drives a turbine. In 2012, about 39 percent of all electricity in the United States was generated by coal-fired power plants, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
What are the main components of coal?
It is composed mostly of carbon and hydrocarbon s, which contain energy that can be released through combust ion (burning). Coal is the largest source of energy for generating electricity in the world, and the most abundant fossil fuel in the United States.
Why did people use coal to heat their homes?
When it is burned, coal makes heat and light energy. Th e cave men used coal for heating, and later for cooking. Burning coal was easier because coal burned longer than wood and, therefore, did not have to be collected as often. People began using coal in the 1800s to heat their homes.
What type of coal is used in a power plant?
In coal-fired power plants, bituminous coal, subbituminous coal, or lignite is burned. The heat produced by the combustion of the coal is used to convert water into high-pressure steam, which drives a turbine, which produces electricity.