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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What happens to a photon when it enters a black hole?

The photon has a mass of 0, but it has energy because of its motion. When it is sucked into the black hole and becomes a singularity, it loses its energy because it is no longer moving. It is not ...
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1answer
89 views

Where / what is the source of the force that causes refraction?

So we know that as light moves from, say, a glass block to air, it speeds up and refracts, but if there is to be acceleration then surely there must be a resultant force to cause it? So where does ...
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2answers
160 views

Energy of a damped oscillator

$$ E=\frac{1}{2}m\left(\frac{dx}{dt}\right)^2+\frac{1}{2}m\omega_0^2x^2. $$ This is the equation for the energy of a oscillator. The second term is the potential energy. Now, my question is, will ...
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2answers
529 views

What will be the velocity of a comet is falling to the Earth from infinity at the time of impact if Earth had no atmosphere?

What will be the velocity of a comet is falling to the Earth from infinity at the time of impact if Earth had no atmosphere? the comet is falling radially towards the earth. Will this velocity be ...
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1answer
148 views

Where does the potential energy go when mass is lifted out of Earth's gravitational field?

There is a finite amount of energy needed to be spent on a rocket or a rock that is taken out of the Earth's gravitational field. Lets suppose the rock is taken far enough to have no effect of Earth's ...
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0answers
44 views

Determining impact velocity over long distances [duplicate]

Everything I have found concerning impact velocity from a given height deals with constant acceleration due to gravity. I would like to know how to work in varying acceleration into the equation. So, ...
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0answers
46 views

Mechanistic description of leverage

How would you describe how a lever is able to apply a large for to an object from only a small applied force without recourse to conservation of energy? Is there a purely F=ma type derivation? For ...
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2answers
158 views

Blueshift and increase in energy!

Imagine that there is a car and it is not moving but its headlights are on. There is a wall in front of the car but is very far away. Right now energy is being used only in switching on the ...
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2answers
957 views

Experimental proof for Conservation of Total Energy

In physics, the law conservation of energy states that the total energy of an isolated system cannot change—it is said to be conserved over time. (Source : wikipedia(conservation of energy) And ...
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1answer
117 views

How does a MRI use 20.1kW yet creates over 204K BTU/h? [closed]

I've been reading through a manual about MRI operating procedures for a large healthcare provider. The manual (written by Siemens) states that the MRI machines use 9kW in stand-by mode and 20.1kW ...
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4answers
612 views

Does car lose kinetic energy when turning?

I am writing simple car simulation. Assume non friction, then in straight line the car doesn't lose speed. But what if the car is turning, there should be some kinetic energy loses to change the ...
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2answers
219 views

Energy of an inductor

I know that for an inductor having self inductance $L$ energy stored in its steady state when a current $I$ has been established is given by $U = \frac{LI^2}{2}$. But after this current has been ...
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2answers
656 views

Energy transfer in elastic collision [duplicate]

In a given reference frame where object 1 (with known mass and velocity) collides elastically with object 2 (with known mass and velocity), can we identify which object loses kinetic energy? Is it ...
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votes
2answers
4k views

Perfectly centered break of a perfectly aligned pool ball rack

Imagine the beginning of a game of pool, you have 16 balls, 15 of them in a triangle <| and 1 of them being the cue ball off to the left of that triangle. Imagine that the rack (the 15 balls in a ...
4
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1answer
304 views

How does a flywheel generate electricity at a constant voltage?

I believe I am missing something simple here. My question concerns flywheel energy storage. Say we have stored some amount of energy in a spinning flywheel. The flywheel is attached to a generator. ...
0
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1answer
97 views

How do I calculate the work done by snow when stopping a person from falling from a plane? [closed]

I have the following data: Assume a man falling from a plane from a height of 370 m ($=h$) high (Straight down). The man falls into a pile of snow and creates a 1.1 m ($=d$) deep crater. The man has a ...
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1answer
154 views

What does the absence of hydrodynamic entrance effects do to the momentum conservation Equation?

I am trying to do a homework problem where we re-write the mass, momentum and energy conservation formulas for downward flow in a vertical pipe and it says "where all hydrodynamic entrance effects ...
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1answer
210 views

Why positronium can annihilate in vacuum?

I thought that the annihilation process of positronium cannot take place without a third-party particle. This can be directly derived from energy & momentum conservation: energy conservation: ...
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2answers
304 views

How energy conservation is not violated here?

If I lift a book of mass $m$ from the ground and put it at height $h$,then initial and final energies with respect to ground are 0 and $mgh$ respectively. So how energy is conserved here?
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1answer
167 views

A variable mass system (cart of sand with a hole)

Imagine we have a frictionless semicircular skateboard ramp and we release a cart filled with sand from one edge of the ramp. The cart has a hole and it loses sand at a constant rate. My question is ...
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1answer
136 views

If an electron can't go faster than light, how is energy conserved here?

I came across a physics question recently about accelerating electrons with potential differences and it got me wondering. Here is the question that brought the concept to mind. First off, imagine ...
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2answers
155 views

Rigid bodies - the wheel

As I've been taught lately in my mechanics course: the wheel has a unique property: at every moment of motion, the touching point between the wheel and the ground is not in movement and ...
2
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0answers
34 views

James Joule's Conservation of Energy

Is there a manifest or documentation of the original Conservation of Energy as stated by James Joule word for word? Edit 1.1: I found Joule's Memoir on google, skimming through to find any conclusive ...
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3answers
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When is energy conserved in a collision and not momentum?

Consider the following example: A bullet of mass 45g is fired at a speed of 220 m/s into a 5.0 kg sandbag hanging from a string from the ceiling. The sandbag absorbs the bullet and begins to ...
4
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1answer
113 views

Sign of $dr$ in Schwarzschild geodesics

There is an equation that relates energy $E$, angular momentum $L$ and other constants and variables to find $\left(\frac{dr}{d\tau}\right)^2$ in a plane. ...
4
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2answers
111 views

What is going on with star's energy?

The sun radiates $3.8 × 10^{26} J$ energy each second, this energy is absorbed by various celestial objects but most of it is reflected or emitted back in the space, similarly there must be energy ...
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1answer
3k views

What is happening to rotational kinetic energy when moment of inertia is changed?

I know this question is asked here a lot, but I just had to ask this to finalise the concept. When a system lets say a rod of length $L$ and mass $M$ is rotating with angular speed $omega_1$ its ...
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3answers
730 views

Where does the kinetic energy go?

A uniform cylinder was placed on a frictionless bearing and set to rotate about its vertical axis. After a cylinder has reached a specific state of rotation it is heated without any mechanical support ...
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4answers
154 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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2answers
100 views

Finding the value of velocity $u$ [closed]

A block of mass $m$ is pushed towards a moveable wedge of mass $\eta m$ and height $h$, with a velocity $u$. All surfaces are smooth. The minimum value of $u$ for which the block will reach the top of ...
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1answer
109 views

Physical interpretation of $Q^i = \partial _\nu T^{i \nu}$

I'm trouble with exercise 1.8 of Carroll's Space-Time and Geometry: If $\partial_\nu T^{\mu \nu} = Q^\mu$, what physically does the spatial vector $Q^i$ represent? Use the dust energy momentum ...
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0answers
65 views

Collision Between Two Particles: Writing the Mass As A Function of The Angle [duplicate]

Suppose we have two masses, $m_1$ and $m_2$, where $m_2$ is at rest, and $m_1$ is headed directly towards $m_2$. I would like to write the ratio of the masses as a function of the angle. Using ...
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2answers
928 views

How does potential energy work in the context of objects in space?

It's said that potential energy is "energy of position." If an object is sitting on a shelf five feet above the floor, its potential energy can be thought of as equal to the amount of energy that ...
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2answers
672 views

Conservation of mass energy and kinetic energy in different reference frames

With a little work it's easy to show that kinetic energy by itself is not necessarily preserved when switching between frames of reference. And it is my understanding that energy should be preserved ...
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0answers
49 views

Do these steps demonstrate that acceleration of charged particle is proportional to current?

One formulation of Maxwell's Gauss Law for electric field is: $$\bigtriangledown E = 4 \pi k \rho $$ This can be worked into the Divergence Theorem as follows: $$\int\int_{A} F_\perp \:dA= 4\pi k ...
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1answer
138 views

Hamiltonian conservation

Lagrangian formalism does not involve forces that doesn't come from a potential and Hamiltonian formalism says that even though energy is not conserved due to a force like this, the Hamiltonian is ...
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4answers
298 views

What kind of energy does superfluidity use?

Liquid helium (and other similar fluids) can "climb up" the walls of their containers. Who does the work in this case, and what kind of energy does it use? I'm sure we can't make a perpetuum mobile ...
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5answers
890 views

Conservation of Mathematical Constraints when deriving Energy and Momentum from $F=ma$

Background: Starting from $F = ma$, integrating with respect to time, and using basic calc, one can derive $\int Fdt = m (v_f - v_i)$ Starting from $F = ma$, integrating with respect to distance, ...
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3answers
3k views

Where does the loss in gravitational energy of the load go when a spring is pulled?

A mass spring system is in equilibrium. If I pull on the load by $x$ meters, the energy stored in the spring is (this is what is given in my book): $$E=\frac12kx^2 $$ However, doesn't the load lose ...
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1answer
189 views

Can exergy and exergy destruction be understood through thermodynamical and/or statistical-mechanical principles?

My textbook Fundamentals of engineering thermodynamics, Moran and Shapiro states: The exergy is the maximum theoretical work obtainable for an overall system consisting of a system and the ...
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1answer
296 views

Energy conversion and momentum conservation law

Bullet ($m=0.02\ kg\ ;v_1=400 \ m/s$ ) hits pendulum ball ($M=3.98\ kg$) and system with stacket bullet and ball bends to one side. Need to find max. delta height ($h$) (position change in vertical ...
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3answers
539 views

Conservation of energy and continuity equation

When physicists say energy is conserved, do they mean that energy satisfies the continuity equation: $$\triangledown \cdot j+\dot{\rho}=0$$ On the internet there is plenty of talk of how the ...
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2answers
431 views

Do accelerated charges radiate or not?

This questions has been asked all over the net (here included) but I can't find a satisfactory answer or discussion. Some say it does not radiate if the acceleration is caused by a uniform gravity ...
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1answer
382 views

How certain is the heat death of the universe?

According to our current scientific knowledge, how certain is it that heat death shall be the ultimate fate of our universe, and why? Are there any serious hypotheses competing with heat death, and if ...
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1answer
167 views

How would you quantify and predict the internal friction and efficiency of a bungee cord?

I am in an introductory physics class and we have been working with Gravitational Potential Energy, Elastic Potential Energy, Kinetic Energy and the Law of Conservation of Energy in relation to bungee ...
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6answers
3k views

Why are rockets so big?

I'm curious why rockets are so big in their size. Since both the gravitational potential one need to overcome in order to put thing into orbit, and the chemical energy burned from the fuel, are ...
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2answers
490 views

Work done by a conservative force

Wikipedia: A conservative force is a force with the property that the work done in moving a particle between two points is independent of the taken path. Equivalently, if a particle travels in a ...
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3answers
192 views

Was Joule's experiment able to show: thermal energy = $mgh$

Is my understanding of this experiment correct? There is the quantity $MC\delta \theta$ associated to the heat which I think is not an absolute value to be compared with $mgh$ since the $\delta ...
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0answers
150 views

Conservation of Mechanical Energy [closed]

I am currently trying to tackle the problem: A 2.0 kg bundle starts up a 30° incline with 125 J of kinetic energy. How far will it slide up the plane if the coefficient of friction is 0.30? ...
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2answers
177 views

Not so simple problem using momentum, energy and angular velocity…?

I have an object in free space (no gravity) with angular momentum $ = \omega_i $, and some velocity vector $=\vec{V_i}$. To simplify we will say it has a mass-less rigid rod length $ = \ell $, ...