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The Simple Physics of Energy Use

Peter Rez

September 2017

ISBN: 9780198802303

304 pages
Paperback
246x189mm

In Stock

Price: £34.49

As a society we use energy for climate control and lighting in buildings, moving people and goods from one place to another and making things. This book uses simple classical physics (mechanics, thermodynamics and electromagnetism) to quantitatively review sources of energy and how we use them.

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Description

As a society we use energy for climate control and lighting in buildings, moving people and goods from one place to another and making things. This book uses simple classical physics (mechanics, thermodynamics and electromagnetism) to quantitatively review sources of energy and how we use them.

  • Comprehensive discussion of energy use in buildings, transportation, and manufacture
  • Quantitatively reviews sources of energy using fundamental physics
  • Using simple algebra and trigonometry, the mathematics are accessible to undergraduate students
  • Discusses matching electrical power generation with demand

About the Author(s)

Peter Rez, Professor, Department of Physics, Arizona State University, USA

Peter Rez completed his bachelors degree in Cambridge, and his PhD on Theory of Electron Scattering in Electron Microscopy, in Oxford. He has worked in industry (Kevex, VG Microscopes) on computer control and data acquisition in electron microscopy. He's been a professor at Arizona State since 1985. His interests have broadened to include general condensed matter theory as applied to batteries and strength of materials, radiation physics as applied to medical physics and radiation detectors, biomineralization and biophysics. This book came about from the author's interest in energy policy, another area where science and policy making collide.

Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1:Energy and Society
    PART I: Controlling the Indoor Environment
    2:Buildings
    3:Electrical Power Generation: Fossil Fuels
    4:Nuclear Power Generation
    5:Electrical Power Distribution
    6:Electrical Power Generation: Renewables - Solar and Wind
    7:Electrical Power Generation: Hydroelectric, Tides, Pumped Storage
    PART II: Moving People and Things Around
    8:Transportation: Fuel Energies
    9:Ground Transportation: Road and Rail
    10:Air Transportation
    11:Ground Transportation: Ships
    PART III: Making Stuff
    12:Materials That Come From the Earth
    13:Agriculture, Things That Are Grown
    14:Embodied Energy and Energy Return on Investment
    15:Summary: What Shoud be Done?

Reviews

"Despite the considerable breadth of the book, if we zoom in on specific topics, there is quite a bit of detail... Opening up to nearly any page, there is a pairing of the simple physics and its application, often with very specific examples." - Michael A. DuVernois, American Journal of Physics

"Rez takes a practical, physics-based approach to answering some of the most challenging questions about energy use and what we should be doing to increase sustainability, and provides a thorough quantitative analysis of the most important energy policy challenges we face." - Miriam R. Aczel, Contemporary Physics

"This is an excellent primer for readers with limited science backgrounds. Overall, it is an excellent resource for undergraduate courses on energy. RECOMMENDED." - J. Tavakoli, CHOICE

"This groundbreaking book asks, and answers, key questions about energy use and carbon reductions including, is it realistic to eliminate carbon emissions? Can renewables (e.g. solar and wind) ever take over from fossil fuels in supplying all the energy we need? How long does it take for a given source of energy (e.g. wind, solar, nuclear) to produce and return the energy used in its manufacture? How has cheap natural gas from fracking changed the global energy situation? This book is a "must read" for all those interested in global warming, carbon reductions and energy use. It should have priority on the reading lists of policy makers, scientists, engineers, politicians, journalists, school teachers, and the general public. If you can only buy one book this year on global warming and energy use, buy this one!" - Sir Colin Humphreys, CBE, FRS, FREng, University of Cambridge

"This book encompasses all energy uses and sources, and is a very helpful aid for both students and policy makers. It is rather unique in that the equations and figures are derived starting from fundamentals. And it sticks to the facts, avoiding debilitating pessimism as well as unrealistic over-optimism about future energy and environmental options." - Dr. H. Avraham Arbib, Formerly Deputy Chief Scientist, Ministry of Energy and Water Resources, Israel

"Six years ago when asked to devise a course on present and future energy systems for engineers, I would very much have liked to have this book to hand. Peter Rez has a primarily US focus but with examples from around the world. He draws the conclusions that put first generation renewable energy technologies firmly in their place — suitable for low density communities that are remote and off grid, and not an answer to the world's generation of carbon dioxide. The book is very clearly written, suitable for any undergraduate, and it should be required reading for any energy policy analyst." - Prof Michael Kelly, University of Cambridge

Additional Resources

A solutions manual is available for this title. Please click here to order your copy

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