How Does Power Get to Your House?

We are so used to just pressing the switch to “on” and getting the light to fill our room that we take it for granted, but, have you ever asked yourself how does electricity travel? How do billions of charged particles move charges from where ever it is that they are generated and travel all these long distances all the way down to your particular light switch? There is a lot more to know about how electricity is made (thermal, Aeolic, water, photons, chemical reactions, etc). Electricity travels long distances through optimal electric conductors ( like copper cables) until they get to their destiny. This often involves a complex series of cables and powerhouses called “The Electric Grid”.

“Electricity for powering our homes is made in power stations. A power station contains large machines called turbines, which are turned very quickly. Power stations need large amounts of energy to turn the turbines. Most use heat energy produced from burning coal”.

“In electricity generation, a generator is a device that converts motive power into electrical power for use in an external circuit. Sources of mechanical energy include steam turbines, gas turbines, water turbines, internal combustion engines and even hand cranks. The first electromagnetic generator, the Faraday disk, was built in 1831 by British scientist Michael Faraday. Generators provide nearly all of the power for electric power grids.

The reverse conversion of electrical energy into mechanical energy is done by an electric motor, and motors and generators have many similarities. Many motors can be mechanically driven to generate electricity and frequently make acceptable manual generators.”

House wiring

“Power points (receptacles, plugs, wall sockets) need to be installed throughout the house in locations where power will be required. In many areas, the installation must be done in compliance with standards and by a licensed or qualified electrician. Power points are typically located where there will be an appliance installed such as telephone, computers, television, home theater, security system, CCTV system.

The number of light. fitting does depend on the type of light fitting and the lighting requirements in each room. The incandescent bulb made household lighting practical, but modern homes use a wide variety of light sources to provide desired light levels with higher energy efficiency than incandescent lamps. A lighting designer can provide specific recommendations for lighting in a home. A layout of lighting in the home must consider control of lighting since this affects the wiring. For example, multiway switching is useful for corridors and stairwells so that a light can be turned on and off from two locations. Outdoor yard lighting and lighting for outbuildings such as garages may use switches inside the home.”