This paper discusses present and future trends in utilization of energy sources as well as development of various types of powerplant systems. Types of energy, their limitations, cost, operations, and requirements related to conversion systems are reviewed.
Some of the sources mentioned are solar energy, nuclear and isotopes, thermal storage, and chemical energy. Present day energy converters analyzed are thermomechanical conversion systems such as the Otto, Diesel, and Brayton cycles. Also considered as engines of the future are direct conversion systems such as the storage battery, thermoelectric, and fuel cell systems.
The author concludes that no one type system will predominate over all others; rather there will be continued effort to match the power converter to the overall system requirements in the most effective manner.