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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Does the concept of a wormhole violate the law of mass-energy conservation?

If my understanding of wormholes is correct, anything that moves into a wormhole can be transported from one region of space-time to another. Consider a situation where an object of mass $m$ in space ...
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5answers
690 views

If I replace all my lights with LEDs will my heating costs increase?

A number of nations are passing bills to phase out incandescent light bulbs. The thinking is that the tungsten filament is an inefficient method of turning electricity into light, the rest of the ...
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2answers
3k views

Elastic collision and spring

Bodies $A$ and $B$ are moving in the same direction in a straight line with a constant velocities on a frictionless surface. The mass and the velocity of $A$ are $2 \text{kg}$ and $10 \text{m/s}$. ...
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1answer
2k views

How is quantum tunneling possible?

How is quantum tunneling possible? According to quantum mechanics, each particle is represented by a probability density function. This function must be continuous, and therefore when we look at a ...
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2answers
2k views

Are information conservation and energy conservation related?

as evident from the title, are both, conservation of energy and conservation of information two sides of the same coin?? Is there something more to the hypothesis of hawking's radiation other than ...
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4answers
792 views

The “binding energy” of bonded particles adds mass?

This is a follow-up my previous question. Several of the answers indicated that the mass of a particle (atom, proton, etc.) increase with the "binding energy" of it's component particles - the energy ...
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1answer
96 views

Acceleration orthogonal to movement direction

I've been told that acceleration orthogonal to an objects movement direction doesn't require energy. Thus when a satellite goes around the earth, the change in direction caused by gravity doesn't use ...
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1answer
147 views

Example where Hamiltonian $H \neq T+V=E$, but $E=T+V$ is conserved

I'm looking for an example of a Hamiltonian $H$, where $H\neq T+V$, but the total energy in the system, $E=T+V$, is still conserved. While I'm at it, I might as well add that I'd be most interested ...
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1answer
646 views

Conservation of Energy and Quantum Fluctuations

Regarding conservation of mass-energy Wikipedia says: "this is an exact law, or more precisely, has never been shown to be violated." However, regarding quantum fluctuations, Wikipedia says here: ...
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2answers
246 views

curvature tensor component capable of doing work on $T_{\mu \nu}$

I'm wondering what part of the curvature tensor is able to do work (and hence transfer energy) in matter. I'm wondering if this tensor: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stress-energy-momentum_pseudotensor ...
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1answer
58 views

When a photon escapes a black hole, why is it red shifted? [duplicate]

I think that is how astronomers hunt for these elusive objects using radio telescope and also gravitational lensing, I'm wondering how these photons lose their energy while encountering black hole or ...
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4answers
12k views

Free energy device - QEG. Is this for real?

I'm not a physicist but I ran across reports on the web of a so called over unity or free energy device that has been created that supposedly works. It's called the QEG. Does this seem legit or is it ...
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1answer
739 views

Speed of a falling pencil [closed]

If you balance a pencil of length $d$ on its tip, and let it fall, how do you compute the final velocity of its other end just before it touches the ground? (Assume the pencil is a uniform one ...
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1answer
640 views

How can a planet gravitationally capture objects?

I would expect that any asteroid or other object originating far away but passing near a planet would pick up speed and energy as it approaches, but unless it comes into contact with the atmosphere ...
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4answers
6k views

Where does the electricity, generated by a solar panel, go if you don't use the electricity?

I'm sorry if this question is too trivial for this Q&A forum. I am a layman when it comes to physics (though I did cover the high-school physics courses). I was wondering what happens to the ...
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1answer
507 views

Numerical schemes, time integration algorithms and energy conservation

What does it mean when someone says a numerical scheme or a time integration algorithm is "energy conserving". How can a numerical scheme "gain" or "lose" or "conserve" energy apart from the numerical ...
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5answers
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Can I take heat from the air and convert it to electricity?

Its a summer day and the air in my house has been heated up. I could switch on my air conditioning, but then I'd be using energy from the grid in order to reduce the amount of energy in my house. ...
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2answers
403 views

What is changing in latest light bulb technologies?

I'm confused with the latest home lightning bulbs. Understanding filament bulbs was easy. For example take 220V, 100W filament bulb: Power = $V^2/R$ Filament gets heated and emits energy in the form ...
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4answers
4k views

How to tell if the collision is elastic or inelastic?

I'm a programmer and a game developer, not a mathematician or a physicist. So please go easy on the math :) I know two things: How to find the new velocities of two objects after an elastic ...
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2answers
550 views

Energy conservation when capacitor charges in a zero resistance circuit

We know that when a capacitor charges from a source $E$, it stores energy of $E=\frac{1}{2}QV $. This is derived without taking into consideration any resistances present in the circuit. We also ...
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2answers
310 views

Total Energy of the Universe? [duplicate]

I've heard the total energy is zero, but I've also heard it cannot be said to be zero since there's so much unknown stuff in the universe. Is that true?
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3answers
498 views

How is angular momentum conserved if a bullet hits a wheel?

Suppose my system involves: 1) A mounted wheel with some outward flap 2) A bullet already in motion Initially the net angular momentum is 0 and the net kinetic energy is just that of the speeding ...
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1answer
2k views

Explicit time dependence of the Lagrangian and Energy Conservation

Why is energy(or in more general terms,the Hamiltonian) not conserved when the Lagrangian has an explicit time dependence? I know that we can derive the identity: $\frac{\partial ...
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3answers
254 views

computer vs heater coil comparison

If I have a computer and a heater coil that consume exactly the same amount of energy, which would be more efficient at heating my room? This is assuming that they both have the same fans and heat ...
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3answers
769 views

Conservation of Energy in Different Frames of Reference

Say I have a bucket of fuel that can produce 150J of energy by combustion. No matter what frame of reference an observer or the bucket of fuel is in, since the configuration of molecules stay the ...
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2answers
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First integral of an equation of motion: $\mu\ddot r=-\frac{k}{r^2}$

I've got an equation of motion (EOM), which is $ \mu\ddot r=-\frac{k}{r^2} $ How do I find the first integral of this EOM? I'd appreciate it if someone could show me the steps involved. I should ...
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0answers
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Energy expressions [closed]

How did people come up with various expressions for energy? By this I mean the expression or formulas for kinetic energy, gravitational potential energy etc. and the intuitive guiding principles to ...
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1answer
103 views

Vector Potential Oscillating E Field of the “Null” Field of a Hertzian Dipole?

The vector potential of a Hertzian dipole falls off spherically as $1/r$. The polar axis of the dipole is a "Null" field -- meaning no electric and magnetic field. The absence of magnetic field is ...
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2answers
417 views

Dropping a weight onto a spring scale

Say I drop a 5kg weight from a height of 1 meters onto a spring scale like many people have in their bathrooms. On impact the scale will show a higher weight than 5kg. Question: Which quantities ...
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3answers
260 views

Redshifted photons

When a photon is emitted from a far away source and then measured by an observer, there is a loss of energy or redshift which takes place. Why does this happen? I have read this similar post, however ...
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0answers
66 views

Uranus, the Physical model to change it's rotation axle

Uranus rotates pretty wierd, it's 90-degrees tilted; Why is Uranus's axis of rotation tilted? The best answer for this is; that at a distant point in its past, Uranus was struck by a very ...
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1answer
163 views

Positions and corresponding terminology of “acoustics energy”?

From limited knowledge, decades ago, dating back to the nineteenth century: Ohm's law of specific acoustic energies was the first biological application of Fourier's theorem. Actually, it was ...
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5answers
1k 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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3answers
134 views

Why don't we consider electrostatic energy of the pair in the case of pair production?

I have seen this Wikipedia article and many others, but in none of them I find any mention of the electro-static energy of the generated pair. Why? I mean, the energy conservation should be written ...
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0answers
88 views

How Long does it take for a roller coaster cart to reach point $x_1$? [closed]

Assume that we have a particle with weight m and initial speed v0, that follows a roller coaster path y(x). Assuming no energy loss to friction or air resistance, the total energy in the system is ...
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1answer
915 views

How do I recover the 1D wave equation from the Lagrangian?

Consider small displacements, $y(x,t)$, of an element of a string (circled in red and shown below) from equilibrium. The force balance in the vertical direction yields: $$+\uparrow \Sigma F: ...
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4answers
180 views

Solids: is energy expended in some fashion by, say, a table to keep the top from sinking down against gravity?

A friend and I were discussing this, and couldn't decide. Since it takes energy to physically raise something up above the planet's surface, does it continue to require energy in order to keep it ...
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1answer
47 views

How do momentum get transferred?

Simple Question , Consider two objects namely $A$ and $B$ where $B$ is stationary and $A$ is moving towards $B$ with velocity $v$. When the two objects touch each other what does actually happen ...
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2answers
247 views

Vertical circular motion: minimum velocity

In vertical circular motion while finding the minimum velocity at the bottom-most point for looping the loop, why do we take the tension at the topmost point to be zero?
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2answers
96 views

How does a Venturi Injector comply with energy conservation?

How does a Venturi Injector comply with energy conservation? When the water flow enters the narrower cross section its velocity increases and its pressure decreases. When the pressure gets lower ...
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3answers
122 views

What happens to half of the energy in a circuit with a capacitor?

For a simple circuit with a battery supplying a voltage V to a capacitor, let us assume that the charge on the capacitor is Q. Now, the work done by the battery or the energy supplied is given by the ...
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2answers
114 views

beta minus decay: expression for maximum electron energy

I'm having some trouble finding an expression for the maximum electron energy in beta minus decay. In the frame where the neutron is initially at rest, conservation of momentum reads: ...
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1answer
89 views

How can a moving frame transmit energy (a fighter plane shoots a bullet)? [duplicate]

This question shows that a bullet shot from a flying plane receives a large amount of energy from the plane, even much more than the energy from the propellant of the bullet. But I wonder how can the ...
0
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1answer
220 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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0answers
145 views

Conservation of kinetic energy on a moving inertial frame

The velocity of an object differs from the point of views of two different inertial observers standing at two different frame of reference. Assuming no gravity and acceleration = 0 for the object and ...
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2answers
224 views

Conservative Forces & Conservation of Energy?

I'm trying to relate them, I'm trying to find the key relation that would show how the conservative forces serve conservation of energy. How would they relate? Also, how are non-conservative forces ...
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3answers
1k views

Energy Analysis of Niagara Falls in Linus Pauling's “General Chemistry”

I just started reading Linus Pauling's "General Chemistry" and the first example confuses me. He writes: Example 1-1. Niagara Falls (Horseshoe) is 160 feet high. How much warmer is the water at ...
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1answer
75 views

Integrating for speed [closed]

Trying to determine the speed of a falling body with respect to traveled distance and initial speed. I've been provided with the following equation for acceleration as a function of distance and the ...
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0answers
109 views

Adiabatic Expansion with expanding control volume

I have a tube with a length $L$ and diameter $d$ that is open on 1 side. At a certain point (say $x$) from the closed end of the tube, I have a gas with a high pressure. At this point, $x$, there is ...
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2answers
202 views

Perspective and changes in kinetic energy

Say you have two planes flying next to each other at the same speed and one decides to pick up speed by burning a tank of rocket fuel. If someone on the ground wanted to know that plane's new speed ...