A Brief History of Energy
The very first energy source was the sun providing heat and light during the day. Later fire was discovered by a lightning strike, producing another source of heat and light.
Thousands of years later we discovered that the wind could be harnessed and we began to use sails on our boats for transportation. Later we began to use windmills to turn water wheels for grinding grain.
Throughout history, we have made lots of discoveries using energy. Before 1850, wood was our main source of fuel for heating, cooking and producing steam for powering steam engines for the railroads. Other sources of energy were water, wind, coal and some manufactured natural gas.
Natural gas was used as early as 500BC by the Chinese. They would find natural gas leaking from the ground and use bamboo to pipe the gas for use in boiling sea water to remove the salt.
Around 1816 manufactured natural gas, made from coal, was first used for street lights in Baltimore, Maryland.
From about 1850 to 1945, coal was the main fuel source. Wood was still an important energy source for heating as well as natural gas for lighting, but water and wind were used less.
For most of the 1900s, oil and natural gas were our main fuel sources. Electricity was used more in the late 1900s. From about 1945 to the present, nuclear and solar energy along with water and wind have played a larger role in the production of energy. Other alternative energy sources being used today are geothermal and biomass.
Copyright © 2009 Apogee | Acknowledgements
Kids Korner is made possible by the creative, talented and dedicated team consisting of the following:
Valerie Williams, Apogee’s Art Director and Lead Artist is the creator and artistic talent behind Kids Korner. In the late 90s, after producing hundreds of illustrations and animations for Apogee online courses and Internet content over the years, it occurred to Valerie that these expensive art elements could be re-purposed for communicating complicated energy concepts to children. Encouraged by the enthusiastic reaction she received from our utility customers, Valerie undertook the design and began the curriculum development of what has become one of the most elaborate and comprehensive energy education sites around. As the site shows, her artistic flair brings technical topics to life, and her proficiency in Photoshop, Quark, In-Design, Illustrator, Flash and Dreamweaver enable her to create impressive designs in both electronic and print formats.
Margaret M. Aderholdt, a middle school teacher at Wellborn Elementary in Anniston, Alabama, leads Apogee’s teacher advisory group. In this capacity, she is the spokesperson for the group, providing input to the curriculum developed for Kids Korner and kid-testing any support materials designed for use with the site prior to them going into production and distributed to customers or schools. With more than 16 years teaching experience, Margaret has been awarded numerous grants and honors for herself and the various schools at which she has instructed. Most recently, she was named the 2004 Teacher of the Year for her outstanding work increasing her student’s test scores, expanding their involvement in academic pursuits, and her tireless efforts to stimulate and challenge her students to higher achievement. Margaret spends her summers attending professional development conferences, workshops, and classes to stay abreast of the latest research in science education. Margaret earned her B.A. in Business Administration at Transylvania University and holds a masters degree in International Commerce from the University of Kentucky. After raising two college age daughters, Margaret returned to the classroom herself to earn a masters degree in Elementary Education.
Michael Overstreet is Apogee’s Kids Korner Product Manager and the mastermind of the site’s programming and navigational design. In his role as product manager, Michael assists utilities with the implementation of their customized Kids Korner application. In addition, he leads Apogee’s field testing of all Kids Korner website activities and supplemental material, conducting classroom trials in local schools.
Susan Gilbert brings to Kids Korner and its growing number of support materials her education and experience as an instructional designer and her enthusiasm for energy education. As president and co-founder of Apogee, Susan is the primary architect behind Apogee’s online energy courses and web content divisions, effectively translating her nearly 25 years of energy efficiency and training experience into highly interactive, online training courseware and Web site tools. Drawing upon her masters degree in Curriculum and Instruction, Susan directs the instructional design process for all Apogee eLearning initiatives, including her personal favorite, Kids Korner.
Dick Niess is Kids Korner’s technical reviewer responsible for assuring accuracy and clarity of the concepts covered on the site. A distinguished Tau Beta Pi graduate of the Virginia Military Institute, Mr. Niess earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering. Mr. Niess is a Fellow of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), is immediate past Chairman of the Applied Heat Pump and Heat Recovery Technical Committee, and serves on the Geothermal Energy Utilization and Centrifugal Machines Technical Committees. He is a repeat contributor to the ASHRAE Systems Handbook, and has authored numerous technical publications for the energy industry.