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Energy: Forms and Changes. Nature of Energy. Energy is all around you! You can hear energy as sound. You can see energy as light. And you can feel it as wind. Nature of Energy. You use energy when you: hit a softball. lift your book bag. compress a spring. Nature of Energy.

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Energy: Forms and Changes

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Energy forms and changes

Energy: Forms and Changes

Nature of energy

Nature of Energy

  • Energy is all around you!

    • You can hear energy as sound.

    • You can see energy as light.

    • And you can feel it as wind.

Nature of energy1

Nature of Energy

  • You use energy when you:

    • hit a softball.

    • lift your book bag.

    • compress a spring.

Nature of energy2

Nature of Energy

Living organisms need energy for growth and movement.

Nature of energy3

Nature of Energy

  • Energy is involved when:

    • a bird flies.

    • a bomb explodes.

    • rain falls from the sky.

    • electricity flows in a wire.

Nature of energy4

Nature of Energy

  • Energy can be defined as the ability to do work.

  • If an object or organism does work, the object or organism is using energy.

Nature of energy5

Nature of Energy

  • Because of the direct connection between energy and work, energy is measured in the same unit as work.

  • In addition to using energy to do work, objects gain energy because work is being done on them.

Forms of energy

Forms of Energy

  • The five main forms of energy are:

    • Heat

    • Chemical

    • Electromagnetic

    • Nuclear

    • Mechanical

Watch this!

Heat energy

Heat Energy

  • The movement of atoms is called heat energy, because moving particles produce heat.

  • Heat energy can be produced by friction.

  • Heat energy causes changes in temperature and state of any form of matter (solid – liquid – gas).

Chemical energy

Chemical Energy

  • Chemical Energy is required to bond atoms together.

  • And when bonds are broken, energy is released.

  • Remember the energy released in our Reaction In A Baggie Lab?

Chemical energy1

Chemical Energy

  • Fuel and food are forms of stored chemical energy. Food reacts with our bodies releasing energy and giving us the ability to move and function.

Electromagnetic energy

Electromagnetic Energy

  • Power lines carry electromagnetic energy into your home in the form of electricity.

Electromagnetic energy1

Electromagnetic Energy

  • Light is a form of electromagnetic energy.

  • Each color of light represents a different amount of electromagnetic energy.

  • Electromagnetic Energy is also carried by X-rays, radio waves, and laser light.

Nuclear energy

Nuclear Energy

  • The nucleus of an atom is the source of nuclear energy.

Nuclear energy1

Nuclear Energy

  • When the nucleus splits (fission), nuclear energy is released in the form of heat energy and light energy.

  • Nuclear energy is also released when nuclei collide at high speeds and join together (fusion).

Nuclear energy2

Nuclear Energy

The sun’s energy is produced from a nuclear fusion reaction in which hydrogen nuclei fuse to form helium nuclei.

Nuclear energy3

Nuclear Energy

  • Nuclear energy is the most concentrated form of energy.

Mechanical energy

Mechanical Energy

  • When work is done to an object, it gains energy. The energy it acquires is known as mechanical energy.

Mechanical energy1

Mechanical Energy

  • When you kick a football, you give mechanical energy to the football to make it move.

Mechanical energy2

Mechanical Energy

When you throw a bowling ball, you give it energy.

When that bowling ball hits the pins, some of the energy is transferred to the pins (transfer of momentum).

Energy conversion

Energy Conversion

Energy can be changed from one form to another. Changes in the form of energy are called energy conversions.

All forms of energy can be converted into other forms.

Energy conversions

Energy conversions

The sun’s light energy goes through solar panels and can be converted directly into electricity.

Energy conversions1

Energy conversions

  • Green plants convert the sun’s light energy (electromagnetic) into starches and sugars (chemical energy).

Other energy conversions

Other energy conversions

  • In an electric motor, electromagnetic energy is converted to mechanical energy.

  • In a battery, chemical energy is converted into electromagnetic energy.

  • The mechanical energy of a waterfall is converted to electrical energy in a generator.

Energy conversions2

Energy Conversions

In an automobile engine:

1. the chemical energy in fuel is burned to convert -

2. into heat energy.

3. The heat energy is then changed -

into mechanical energy.

Chemical heat mechanical

Chemical  Heat Mechanical

States of energy

States of Energy

  • The most common energy conversion is the conversion between potential and kinetic energy.

  • All forms of energy can be in either of two states:

    • Potential

    • Kinetic

States of energy kinetic and potential energy

States of Energy: Kinetic and Potential Energy

  • Kinetic Energy is the energy of motion / movement.

  • Potential Energy is stored energy waiting to be released.

Watch this!

Kinetic energy

Kinetic Energy

  • The energy of motion is called kinetic energy.

  • The faster an object moves, the morekinetic energy it has.

  • The greater the mass of a moving object, the more kinetic energy it has.

  • Kinetic energy depends on both mass and velocity.

Potential energy

Potential Energy

  • Potential Energy is stored energy.

    • Stored chemically in fuel, the nucleus of atom, and in foods.

    • Or stored because of the work done on it:

      • Stretching a rubber band.

      • Winding a watch.

      • Pulling back on a bow’s arrow.

      • Lifting a brick high in the air.

Elastic potential energy

Elastic Potential Energy

  • Energy that is stored due to being stretched or compressed is called elastic potential energy.

Gravitational potential energy

Gravitational Potential Energy

  • Potential energy that is dependent on height is called gravitational potential energy.

Gravitational potential energy1

Gravitational Potential Energy

  • A waterfall, a suspension bridge, and a falling snowflake all have gravitational potential energy.

Gravitational potential energy2

Gravitational Potential Energy

  • If you stand on a 3-meter diving board, you have 3 times the Gravitational Potential Energy, than you had on a 1-meter diving board.

Gravitational potential energy3

Gravitational Potential Energy

  • “The bigger they are the harder they fall” is not just a saying. It’s true. Objects with more mass have greater Gravitational Potential Energy.

  • The formula to find G.P.E. is

    G.P.E. =Weight X Height.

Kinetic potential energy conversion

Kinetic-Potential Energy Conversion

Roller coasters work because of the energy that is built into the system. Initially, the cars are pulled mechanically up the tallest hill, giving them a great deal of potential energy. From that highest point, the conversion between potential and kinetic energy powers the cars throughout the entire ride.

Kinetic vs potential energy

Kinetic vs. Potential Energy

At the point of maximum potential energy, the car has minimum kinetic energy.

Kinetic potential energy conversions

Kinetic-Potential Energy Conversions

  • As a basketball player throws the ball into the air, various energy conversions take place.

Energy forms and changes

Ball speeds up

Ball slows down

The law of conservation of energy

The Law of Conservation of Energy

  • Energy can be neither created nor destroyed by ordinary means.

    • It can only be converted from one form to another.

    • If energy seems to disappear, then scientists look for it – leading to many important discoveries.

Watch this!

Law of conservation of energy

Law of Conservation of Energy

  • In 1905, Albert Einstein said that mass and energy can be converted into each other.

  • He showed that if matter is destroyed, energy is created, and if energy is destroyed mass is created. 2

    • E = MC

Energy resources

Energy Resources

We get our energy from a variety of sources.

  • Nonrenewable

  • Renewable

  • Inexhaustible

Nonrenewable energy sources

Nonrenewable Energy Sources

  • Fossil Fuels such as coal, natural gas, and oil are mined from the earth then burned to create a usable form of energy. This is a fairly inexpensive way to get energy, however it puts high amounts of pollution in the environment and damages the earth.

Renewable resources

Renewable Resources

  • Biomass is organic material made from plants and animals. Wood, crops, manure, and garbage are some examples of biomass. These products can be burned or processed into a usable energy such as ethanol (from corn). Biomass is renewable because it is either waste or fast growing crops and produces a much smaller amount of pollution when burned.

Inexhaustible resources

Inexhaustible Resources

  • Some available resources will not run out such as wind, water, and sunlight.

  • The energy in moving wind or water can be harnessed and turned into electricity. Sunlight can be captured in solar panels and also turned into electricity.

  • These options do not require any burning so no air pollution is produced, however because windmills take up land and power dams effect the water there is some environmental disadvantages. Solar panels are also a clean energy but are expensive.

For more information on energy sources

For more information on Energy Sources



Vocabulary words

Vocabulary Words


mechanical energy

heat energy

chemical energy

electromagnetic energy

nuclear energy

kinetic energy

potential energy

gravitational potential energy

energy conversion

Law of Conservation of Energy

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