The law of conservation of energy, which states that the amount of energy in a system is constant. For questions about Earth's environment, see the climate-science tag instead.

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frequency shift in background radiation, where is the missing energy? [duplicate]

It is known that the dilatation of the universe cause a shift in frequency in the background radiation toward lower frequencies. It is also known that photons with lower frequency have lower energy ...
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1answer
45 views

Why is the Carnot engine the most efficient?

It seems that the only condition used in proving that the Carnot engine is the most efficient is that it is reversible. More specifically, the Carnot engine can be run in reverse as a refrigerator. ...
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2answers
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Understanding a graph of energy conservation with bounded and unbounded motions?

This graph is from the physics undergraduate text "Classical Mechanics by Douglas Gregory". Above this graph was the statement: What I didn't understand is- as stated in the under [*paragraph], ...
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1answer
53 views

Spring on a cart problem [closed]

The problem is two dimensional. At t = 0, a stationary cart at initial position (0,0) starts to accelerate with acceleration a in the negative "x-axis" direction. On the cart, there is an isosceles ...
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1answer
36 views

Calculating speed of spheres in an asymmetric Newton's cradle?

If we assume there is an asymmetric Newton's cradle with 3 spheres of different masses and the first one is initialized with some certain speed can we calculate the outcome speed of the all the three ...
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2answers
116 views

Was the Big Bang actually cold?

As I understand, from watching the Discovery Channel, the total amount of energy in the universe is zero. As such, people like Hawking explain that the universe can be created out of nothing ...
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0answers
13 views

Muscular energy transformations with regards to gravity

Maybe this has more to do with biology than I know, but I have been wondering just what kind of energy muscles use and convert when lifting a weight off the ground or lowering a weight back to the ...
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1answer
26 views

What happens to K.E. in matter antimatter annihilation?

If I have two matter and antimatter particles, say an electron and a positron, each moving towards each other with a certain speed, they annihilate after the collision. Does the energy of the photons ...
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1answer
41 views

What happens to the energy of photons when two light waves with plane wavefront interferes destructively? [duplicate]

When I began learning about optical interference, I came to know about destructive interference in which light waves cancel each other. How the energy is still conserved ? I found that the ...
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1answer
47 views

Is change in kinetic energy invariant?

Consider the inelastic collision between two bodies. This question follows on from this: Is the coefficient of restitution frame independent and energy conservation?. One of the answers to this ...
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0answers
93 views

Friction and work from torque

I would like to understand where is the error in the third case, for that I gave 2 easier cases where I'm able to find the energy from heating is equal to the energy lost by torque. Case 1/ Purple ...
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1answer
41 views

Why do we have to use an integral in this scenario to figure out $v_{max}$? [duplicate]

$$\int_0^R mg\frac{r}{2}dr=\frac{m}{2}v_{max}$$ and can't write $$\frac{m}{2}v_{max}=mgR$$ don't we usually equal potential energy to kinetic energy? A stone is falling through a tunnel towards the ...
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1answer
112 views

What prevents this rotational perpetuum mobile from working? [closed]

As a newbie in physics I imagine this device and I would like to know why it can't increase its energy. Note I study the sum of energy during one second (or less) after set friction ON. The device: ...
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1answer
36 views

How many properties like charge, mass etc any quanta or particle must have?

How many properties are required to measure full energy of a fundamental particle? I know $E=mc^2$, but what about charge, spin, etc? Which full equation would give me all parameters of any particle?
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1answer
55 views

Can Gauss' and Ampere's Laws be written in terms of the divergence of an energy four-vector?

In the first 20 minutes of this video, Susskind derives the continuity equation for charge conservation: $$\dot{\rho}+\nabla\cdot\vec{J}=0$$ (Where $\vec{J}=\frac{\partial\dot{q}^m}{\partial A^m} ...
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1answer
60 views

Heat Equation with In-Depth Radiation Exact Solution

I am looking to solve the heat conduction equation in a semi-infinite solid with in-depth radiation on the domain $-\infty < x < 0$. The governing equation of this problem is: $$\rho c ...
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2answers
42 views

Inelastic collision theoretical problem - kinetic energy

I was wondering if there is a possibility where in inelastic collision the final kinetic energy is not less than the initial kinetic energy.
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6answers
482 views

Can energy be created and destroyed?

The indroduction of the principle of conservation of mechanical energy has been tremendously useful from the practical point of view. But .. Consider the case in which we shoot an electron up in the ...
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2answers
92 views

Do electrons “check in” at the quantized energy radius before they leap?

Quantum jumps inside atoms always have the same energy, at least in a hydrogen atom when jumping from $n=1$ to $n=2$, like from a 1s1 to a 2s1 state. My question is, if an electron can be anywhere in ...
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1answer
47 views

momentum and energy of the rods

I have two electromagnets and I attach them to two rods(same mass) such that, first one will be attached to centre of first rod and the second one will be to the end of second rod. Now I bring them ...
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2answers
128 views

I need help figuring out what is wrong in this aspiring perpetuum mobile

Credits: My question is motivated from a question from another user (One disk/ring in double rotation and sum of energy), I just reformulated what I think he tried to ask into, what seem to me, ...
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2answers
2k views

Does a cooling mass lose mass as it radiates?

Assume we have a red hot cannonball in space. It starts off with mass M at 1000K. Later it has cooled by radiation to 100K. Has the mass decreased?
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5answers
110 views

Mass and Energy

Would the mass of burnt firewood be equal to the mass of firewood before burning? Then where does that heat come from? According to Einstein's equation, $E=mc^2$ Shouldn't there be some mass going ...
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1answer
35 views

Finding the total energy of satellite in orbit with the Earth

I'm given a problem where a satellite with mass $m$ is orbiting the Earth with mass $M$ and radius $R$ ($m<<M$) in a elliptical orbit. The ellipse has semimajor axis $a$ and semiminor axis $b$. ...
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0answers
29 views

Where did the energy of the universe come from? [duplicate]

Last week my Physics teacher asked the class this question: If the internal energy of the universe is constant, then where did all the energy come from originally?
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4answers
107 views

Conservation of potential energy for a wormhole

So you managed to build a stable traversable wormhole. Somehow you managed to acquire the exotic negative-tension materials with sufficient densities to make it all work. Now you place opening A of ...
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1answer
91 views

How does conservation of energy manifest itself quantum mechanically?

We know that classically, if we have some theory $\mathcal{L}$ such that the action $\int d^4 x \mathcal{L}$ is invariant under time translation, then we can use Noether's theorem to find that (the ...
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1answer
33 views

Conservation of energy and inclines

I have question which I'm unsure of whether or not I am thinking about it right. If an object is sliding down frictionless incline and it then comes to the "foot" of the incline where it encounters ...
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1answer
61 views

Changing momentum of moving trolley

We have a trolley of mass $m$ and it is moving at a velocity $v$ along a smooth horizontal plane. It is full of water, and is leaking water at a constant rate out of the bottom of the trolley, i.e ...
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3answers
93 views

The Difference Between voltage and current

I know that this question has been asked many times before, and I have read over several of the threads asking this question, but they do not include the gripe I have with my problem of understanding ...
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1answer
34 views

A question on a body moving up a ramp [closed]

Let us consider a ramp of vertical height $h$ and an angle $x$. A body at the bottom of the ramp is given a velocity $v$ such that it moves up the ramp length and continues as a body that is ...
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1answer
37 views

How is energy converted when massless spring is attached to a rigid support

Say a massless spring of length l is attached to a rigid support. It is extended to length l + x. Now at this position, the ...
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0answers
144 views

Sum of energy from torques of several disks in double rotation [closed]

Here the study: An external system (not drawn) give energy for rotate disks around themselves and around green axis. All disks have energy at start, at $t=0$ friction is ON and at $t=0$ external ...
4
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1answer
142 views

Energy conservation of Virtual Particles - Quantum Fluctuation?

I (as a middle-school student) was wondering how virtual particles even conserve energy of the entire system? I don't mean just the particle's energy, but conservation with respect to the ...
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3answers
205 views

Is any energy required to deflect an asteroid, with force always perpendicular to its trajectory?

Let's assume there is an asteroid traveling on a straight line (far from any gravitational source), and we need to deflect it from its actual trajectory, so we build a rocket motor on the surface and ...
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0answers
57 views

2 masses are attached to hanging string and one is released. What is the max height reached by the other?

A spring is in static equilibrium (not moving) with two masses ($m_1$ and $m_2$) attached to the spring. The spring constant is: 22.0 N/m, while $m_1 = 0.16\,kg$, $m_2 = 0.13\, kg$ and mass 1 ...
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1answer
48 views

Why does gravity enact force? [closed]

Gravity would cause two objects in a vacuum to move toward each other. I understand that gravity is a force that exists as a product of energy's original conversion into mass and the continuing change ...
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1answer
45 views

Which inertial observer should I choose when using $\Delta U = -\Delta K$?

I just read and undertood that For any conservative force $F$ (which is not necessarily constant), we can define a potential energy change $\Delta U$ of an object on which the force exerts as ...
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1answer
58 views

Energy Imparted by a Magnetic Field

As I understand it, when you switch on an electromagnet it generates a magnetic field that pervades all space, imparting potential/kinetic energy to every object with which it interacts. Where does ...
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5answers
366 views

Kinetic energy vs. momentum?

As simple as this question might seem, I failed to intuitively answer it. Let's assume there is a $10,000$ $kg$ truck moving at $1$ $m/s$, so its momentum and KE are: $p=10,000$ $kg.m/s$ and ...
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1answer
70 views

The Law of Conservation of Energy and Time

The Law of Conservation of Energy essentially states that in a given closed system, the total energy at any instance of time should be equal. This includes the kinetic energy, gravitational potential ...
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3answers
70 views

Can Thermal Energy be converted into usable energy?

I'm going to go out on a limb and ask a question that will probably be a bit humiliating: Can Thermal Energy be converted into usable energy? I've been reading about conservation of energy, and I know ...
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6answers
403 views

Why is kinetic energy stored as potential energy in a body during its motion against gravity?

Everyone knows kinetic energy is converted to potential energy in the body when it moves up against the earth's opposing gravitational force. But I am facing some problem with this. What I learnt ...
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1answer
83 views

Why wouldn't a room temperature superconductor violate the laws of physics?

I understand that the laws of physics (as we know them) cannot be violated, but what I would like to know is what I'm missing, because I know there is some explanation that I'm not accounting for. ...
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1answer
96 views

Conservation of energy when focusing black body radiation on another black body

This question about whether or not it is possible to focus black-body radiation to make something hotter than the radiation's source was answered mostly negative: the second law of thermodynamics ...
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2answers
208 views

What's wrong with my derivation for the spring constant? [duplicate]

An $8.00\ \mathrm{kg}$ stone at rest on a spring. The spring is compressed $10.0\ \mathrm{cm}$ by the stone. What is the spring constant? I used conservation of energy to solve this problem. The ...
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0answers
18 views

Conservation of energy with the change of observers

While trying to analyze a collision of two bodies, while considering the energy loss, I made this equation: $1/2m_1u_1^2 + 1/2m_2u_2^2 = 1/2m_1v_1^2 + 1/2m_2v_2^2 - W$ where $u_1$ and $u_2$ are the ...
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2answers
53 views

In a CMCS 2-body system, why does the speed of the particles after collision stay the same?

A particle $m_1$ is traveling with velocity $v$ toward a stationary particle $m_2$. The velocity of the center of mass is given as $v_c=\frac{m_1}{m_1+m_2}v$. Changing to a moving coordinate system, ...
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3answers
219 views

Finding maximum height of projectile motion using potential/kinetic energy

I'm having some difficulty understanding how to find the maximum height using conservation of force. This is the picture I'm looking at: and this is how you find it: $$\begin{align*} ...
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1answer
85 views

making an equation dimensionless

I have a balance of energy equation as following (for a spherical particle that colliding with a spherical fluid droplet) Left hand side is for before collision and RHS for after that: ...