COLIN CUTHBERT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY COLIN CUTHBERT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Power station turbine hall. Generator (centre) and exciter (centre right, both blue) in a coal-fired power station. Steam, produced by the heat from burning coal, is passed through turbines to drive the generator and produce electricity. The exciter starts the generator. This is the Drax power station near Selby, North Yorkshire, UK. As of 2006, Drax is the largest, cleanest and most efficient of the UK's coal-fired power stations. It can burn 36,000 tones of coal a day to produce 4,000 megawatts of power, around 7% of the UK's electricity needs. It was built from 1974-1986.
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