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Suddenly, you're left staring blankly into the darkness. Desperately, you repeatedly flip that little switch that would normally fill the room with light, but your attempts are futile. Frustrated, you begin fumbling around the house to find a candle or flashlight...

...A blackout has occurred. Most of us have had to endure through this annoying and trying experience some point in our lives. Electricity being so readily available it is easy to take for granted. In events such as blackouts, we are suddenly reminded of how dependent we are on electricity. Without the help of tiny flowing electrons, the modern world essentially comes to a standstill.

So where exactly does all that electricity come from? Well, there are a huge variety of sources, ranging from conventional energies such as oil, coal and natural gas, to renewable energies such a solar, wind and hydrogen. As electricity demands increase and concerns grow about sustainability and preservation of the environment, it becomes important to understand how each energy source functions and where it is best suited. That way, we can ensure a steady and clean supply of electricity for our ever growing appetite for energy...and hopefully keep those lights on even in blackouts.

Click here to see a flash introduction animation (15.0 kb)

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