Energy flow diagram

Nick Touran, 2020-06-03

This diagram roughly shows the origin of energy we can use to help us do stuff.

Most items are individually clickable to give you more info (mostly Wikipedia links).


graph TD

    big["Big bang"] --> Protons[(Protons)] --> Stars[("Ancient stars<br/> (nuclear fusion)")]
    click Stars "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fusion"
    click big "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Bang"
    
    Stars --> stellar["Stellar <br/>nucleosynthesis"]
    click stellar "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stellar_nucleosynthesis"
    stellar --> iron[(Elements lighter<br> than Iron)]
    iron --> fusion(["Nuclear fusion <br/>on Earth (TBD)"]) -.-> Electricity((Energy))
    click fusion "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fusion_power"
    style fusion stroke:#f66,stroke-dasharray: 5, 5
    supernova --> cooling["Primordial heat"] --> geo
    supernova --> Uranium
    click cooling "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth%27s_internal_heat_budget#Primordial_heat"

    Stars --> supernova["Supernova<br/> nucleosynthesis"]
    click supernova "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supernova_nucleosynthesis"
    
    Stars --> ssys[(Solar system<br/> dynamics)]
    ssys --> Tidal([Tidal]) --> Electricity
    click Tidal "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tidal_power"
    click ssys "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formation_and_evolution_of_the_Solar_System"
    
    Protons --> Sun[("Our Sun <br/>(nuclear fusion)")]--> srad["Solar radiation"]
    click Protons "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proton"
    click Sun "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sun"
    click srad "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunlight"
    srad --> solar(["Solar PV"])
    click solar "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photovoltaic_system"
    srad --> uneven["Uneven heating"] --> pressure["Pressure gradients"] --> Wind([Wind])
    click pressure "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pressure_gradient"
    solar --> Electricity
    Wind --> Electricity
    click Wind "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wind"
    
    
    fission --> fp[(Fission products)]
    click Uranium "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uranium"
    click fission "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fission"
    click fp "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fission_product"
    fission --> Electricity


    srad --> Evaporation --> Rain[(Rain)] --> hydro([Hydropower]) --> Electricity
    click hydro "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydropower"
    click Rain "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rain"
    click Evaporation "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evaporation"
    srad --> Photosynthesis --> Plants[(Organic matter)]
    Plants --> Biofuel[(Biofuel)] --> Combustion --> Electricity
    Plants --> Decay --> Fossil[("Fossil fuel <br/>(oil, coal, gas)")] --> Combustion
    click Photosynthesis "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photosynthesis"
    click Decay "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fossil_fuel#Origin"
    click Fossil "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fossil_fuel"
    click Biofuel "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biofuel"
    click Combustion "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combustion"
    click Plants "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organic_matter"
    
    iron --> |K-40| decayheat
    Uranium --> decayheat["Radioactive decay heat"] 
    decayheat --> geo([Geothermal])
    click decayheat "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth%27s_internal_heat_budget#Radiogenic_heat"
    geo --> Electricity
    click geo "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geothermal_energy"
    Uranium[("Uranium &<br>Thorium")] --> fission(["Nuclear fission"])  
""
    Electricity -->quality[("Improved quality of life")]
    click Electricity "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy"
    click quality "https://www.researchgate.net/figure/HDI-vs-electricity-consumption-2-40-46_fig4_315794998"
    Combustion --> airp[(Air pollution)]
    click airp "http://www9.who.int/airpollution/en/"
    Combustion --> co2[("CO₂ emissions")]

    co2 --> warming[(Climate change)]
    airp --> lung[(Lung diseases)]
    click co2 "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_gas#Anthropogenic_greenhouse_gases"
    click lung "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Respiratory_disease"
    
    click warming "https://climate.nasa.gov/evidence/"
graph TD big["Big bang"] --> Protons[(Protons)] --> Stars[("Ancient stars<br/> (nuclear fusion)")] click Stars "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fusion" click big "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Bang" Stars --> stellar["Stellar <br/>nucleosynthesis"] click stellar "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stellar_nucleosynthesis" stellar --> iron[(Elements lighter<br> than Iron)] iron --> fusion(["Nuclear fusion <br/>on Earth (TBD)"]) -.-> Electricity((Energy)) click fusion "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fusion_power" style fusion stroke:#f66,stroke-dasharray: 5, 5 supernova --> cooling["Primordial heat"] --> geo supernova --> Uranium click cooling "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth%27s_internal_heat_budget#Primordial_heat" Stars --> supernova["Supernova<br/> nucleosynthesis"] click supernova "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supernova_nucleosynthesis" Stars --> ssys[(Solar system<br/> dynamics)] ssys --> Tidal([Tidal]) --> Electricity click Tidal "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tidal_power" click ssys "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formation_and_evolution_of_the_Solar_System" Protons --> Sun[("Our Sun <br/>(nuclear fusion)")]--> srad["Solar radiation"] click Protons "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proton" click Sun "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sun" click srad "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunlight" srad --> solar(["Solar PV"]) click solar "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photovoltaic_system" srad --> uneven["Uneven heating"] --> pressure["Pressure gradients"] --> Wind([Wind]) click pressure "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pressure_gradient" solar --> Electricity Wind --> Electricity click Wind "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wind" fission --> fp[(Fission products)] click Uranium "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uranium" click fission "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fission" click fp "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fission_product" fission --> Electricity srad --> Evaporation --> Rain[(Rain)] --> hydro([Hydropower]) --> Electricity click hydro "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydropower" click Rain "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rain" click Evaporation "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evaporation" srad --> Photosynthesis --> Plants[(Organic matter)] Plants --> Biofuel[(Biofuel)] --> Combustion --> Electricity Plants --> Decay --> Fossil[("Fossil fuel <br/>(oil, coal, gas)")] --> Combustion click Photosynthesis "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photosynthesis" click Decay "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fossil_fuel#Origin" click Fossil "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fossil_fuel" click Biofuel "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biofuel" click Combustion "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combustion" click Plants "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organic_matter" iron --> |K-40| decayheat Uranium --> decayheat["Radioactive decay heat"] decayheat --> geo([Geothermal]) click decayheat "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth%27s_internal_heat_budget#Radiogenic_heat" geo --> Electricity click geo "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geothermal_energy" Uranium[("Uranium &<br>Thorium")] --> fission(["Nuclear fission"]) "" Electricity -->quality[("Improved quality of life")] click Electricity "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy" click quality "https://www.researchgate.net/figure/HDI-vs-electricity-consumption-2-40-46_fig4_315794998" Combustion --> airp[(Air pollution)] click airp "http://www9.who.int/airpollution/en/" Combustion --> co2[("CO₂ emissions")] co2 --> warming[(Climate change)] airp --> lung[(Lung diseases)] click co2 "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_gas#Anthropogenic_greenhouse_gases" click lung "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Respiratory_disease" click warming "https://climate.nasa.gov/evidence/"

You can download this as a jpg here.