IBDP Physics Chapter 8 Notes

Energy production Theory

STUDY NOTES FOR physics CHAPTER 8 – Energy production THEORY

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The curriculum for Physics IBDP is designed in such a way to bring students and readers alike to the frontiers of modern science and elevate the spirit of scientific inquiry in their minds. The topics in the syllabus range from the ancient science of the Greeks to modern disciplines like Atomic and Astrophysics, which makes the students aware of the entire spectrum of the discoveries and advances in Physics alongside the rationale and its purpose. As such the chapters are divided by classical and modern distinctions: classical chapters include Newtonian Mechanics describe the original theories of motion and movement, Thermodynamics talk about our original assumptions of ideal gas and principles of heat and temperature, while Electrodynamics cover the interconnected universe of electricity, magnetism and electromagnetic waves, and the various properties and phenomena associated with them.

In contrast lies the topics of Modern Science, ranging from Atomic, Nuclear and Particle Physics to the more advanced study of motion in Einstein’s Relativity and Quantum Mechanics. A complete understanding of these topics will render any reader with the amazing ability to apply Physics to every corner of life, ranging from the mundane to the extraordinary; prepare them prepare them for only a future in an advanced scientific discipline, but also in fields like Economics, Finance and Technology, all of which require a scientific mindset at their core.

In this chapter of Electricity and Magnetism, we begin with Coulomb’s law of electrostatic force between charged particles, which is the reason behind the concepts of electric field, electric current and potential, which we discuss further in the context of resistance, voltage and Ohm’s Law. We move on to study electric circuits and the various components that make up a circuit, leading to Kirchhoff’s Law to analyze more complicated circuits.
Subsequently, we throw light on how a moving charge produces a magnetic field, with expression given for the magnetic force produced by a current carrying wire. All of this culminates with the principle of electromagnetic induction and its use to produce alternating current using a dynamo, a phenomena that forms the basis of current energy production.
In this chapter of Energy Production, we discuss various methods of producing energy, their merits and shortcomings, the physics behind these methods and the push towards more renewable sources of energy production. A detailed analysis is presented on:
– fossil fuel energy
– nuclear power and the workings of a nuclear reactor
– solar energy and principles of a photovoltaic cell
– hydroelectric power and its various downfalls
– wind power.
We then talk about thermal energy transfer through the phenomena of conduction, convection and radiation. A further discussion is kept on black body radiation, which can be expressed and understood using Stefan’s Boltzmann Law and Wien’s Displacement Law.