Energy is the conserved quantity associated to time-translation invariance and represents the work a system is capable of doing. Use this tag for questions about energy, and consider adding [tag:energy-conservation] if it is specifically about its conservation.

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Tubelights+power lines pictures?

I've come across many pictures like these, sometimes in chain emails reporting the dangers of power lines. Another claim is that they run on "wasted" energy. The explanations given are that the ...
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1answer
2k views

In what situations do I use the characteristic length of a fin to find the surface area?

So I'm learning about fins in heat transfer and it seems that there are two separate formulas for the surface area of a rectangular fin of length L, width w and thickness t. The fin is attached to a ...
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What meaning do changes in the absolute value of Gibbs free energy have in a simple expansion process?

Below is a simple representation of the thermodynamics of a steam turbine. Stream kinetic and potential energy changes are neglected and no other type of non-PV work is done besides shaft work. ...
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How much of the energy from 1 megaton H Bomb explosion could we capture to do useful work?

The world is full of nuclear warheads being stockpiled. Controlled fusion power seems a long way away. Could we put these warheads to better use by exploding them in a controlled way and capturing ...
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Which is more efficient, heating water in microwave or electric stove?

So our propane tank in the kitchen ran out again today. Which is more energy efficient, boiling water in a microwave on an electric stove? All things being equal i.e. starting temperature and mass ...
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Air velocity in a double-skin facade

I was wondering how the air flows in a double skin facade? Say I have a glass facade with a depth of 1m, a height of 200m and a width of 10m. It is a single vertical shaft all the way up with openings ...
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2answers
157 views

What will be the unit of mass in $E=mc^2$ when energy units change?

I know that conventionally the unit of $E$ in $E=mc^2$ is taken as joules when mass is in $\mathrm{kg}$. But I am doing some calculations of my own with different units of energy ...
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89 views

Lower state of energy for 'connected' molecules

Quote from Wikipedia: Another way to view surface tension is in terms of energy. A molecule in contact with a neighbor is in a lower state of energy than if it were alone (not in contact with a ...
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472 views

kinetic energy in collisions [closed]

We were hoping you could help us understand collision energy. Vehicle $ A $ is driving West at $35\space mph$ and weighs $ 1437 \space kg$. Vehicle $ B $ is driving North at $35\space mph$ and weighs ...
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1answer
284 views

What is meant by the rest energy of non-composite particle?

When talking about the rest energy of a composite particle such as a proton, part of the rest energy is accounted for by the internal kinetic energy of its constituent quarks. But what is physically ...
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2answers
383 views

Connection between momentum and energy

What is the connection between momentum and energy? Which of the answers is the correct? A particle can have zero momentum but energy. A particle can have zero energy but momentum. ...
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434 views

Is the $mL_c$ value for triangular and rectangular fins the same value?

I am looking at the solutions that my professor put up and I feel that he did something wrong. Here is the question and I will give my stab at the solution so you can see why I think that it is wrong. ...
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1answer
779 views

Work and Area under a Curve relating to Hooke's Law

If it takes work W to stretch a Hooke’s-law spring (F = kx) a distance d from its unstressed length, determine the extra work required to stretch it an additional distance d (Hint: draw a graph and ...
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6answers
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17 Joules of Energy From a Mouse Trap

Do you think it would be possible to get 17 joules out of a standard size mouse trap. By my math, it is a torsion coefficient of 3.45 or so out of the spring.
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1answer
273 views

Negative energies and a partition function

I'm writing down the partition function for a system, for which I know the dispersion relation $$E \left( \mathbf{k} \right) = \sqrt{ \left| \mathbf{k} \right|^2 + m^2 + \cdots }$$ The exact form is ...
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1answer
710 views

How do I find average temperature given a temperature distribution?

I was told to find the temperature distribution of a wire with a current going through it. So I found $$T(x)=T_{\infty}-\frac{\dot{q}}{km^{2}}[\frac{cosh(mx)}{cosh(mL)}-1]$$ I need to find the ...
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1k views

What does activation energy actually do?

Spontaneous (exothermic) chemical reactions often require a push from the addition of externally supplied energy. This energy is often called activation energy. What does activation energy actually ...
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3answers
448 views

storing energy (as mass)

When chemical energy is released mass is reduced, if only by a negligible amount. Presumably that's true for all energy. And presumably that works in reverse as well: storing energy involves an ...
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2answers
353 views

Does EM radiation (any, i.e. RF), or sound, radiate everywhere at once?

I am having trouble understanding electromagnetic radiation (or waves in general, be it EM or sound). If I have a 1 Watt speaker, is it infinitely divided and spread out so that everyone in every ...
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2answers
208 views

Show that the energy levels of a particle in a specific potential are $E_n=(n+\frac{1}{2})h\omega-\frac{1}{2}\frac{F^2}{m\omega^2}$ [closed]

A particle of mass m moves on the x-axis under the influence of the potential $$V(x)=\frac{1}{2}m\omega^2x^2+Fx$$ Can anyone help me, using Schrödinger's equation in one dimension that the energy ...
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1answer
167 views

Abstract, generic derivations of energy

How generic can be derivation of energy? In a system with gravity and masses – it is potential energy and kinetic energy. What if a constraint would be specified that no mass and velocity should be ...
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4answers
905 views

Easy to understand equivalents for energy (kilowatt-hour)

Is there a database/webpage/other source for obtaining simple, easy to understand and meaningful equivalents for converted energy by a photovoltaic-site (Wh/kWh/MWh/GWh)? Something like "xxxkWh equals ...
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0answers
461 views

How equivalent are heat energy and work energy in connection with a spinning flywheel?

Let's say we have two identical spinning flywheels, that have arbitrary geometry, and are made of copper. Now we apply some heat energy at the center point of flywheel A, causing it to slow down a ...
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3answers
3k views

How much energy was consumed when we turn on/off light?

My parents told me to turn off the light when I am not using it. But I remember my physics teacher told me that the action of turning on/off a light can cause huge energy. I am wondering how much is ...
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1answer
94 views

Terminology question about energy

I'm looking for the appropriate term to use for what gets "used up" as potential energy is converted to heat and work. For example, some of the the energy in solar radiation is converted by ...
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99 views

Energy behind door knocking?

How do we estimate the energy released from knocking on a wooden table or a door?
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3answers
193 views

Lightning Power?

What is the power source of a lightning? It doesn't consume fuel, nor an atomic fission/fusion, but it discharges a large amount of energy. Is it feasible to create an artificial lightning using the ...
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2answers
1k views

Energy in an EM wave should depend on frequency

I just finished reading Feynman's Lectures on Physics vol.I, §34-9: "The momentum of light". The author explains that there is a relation between the wave 4-vector $k^{\mu}$ and the energy-momentum ...
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2answers
145 views

Energy required to reach 1 wavelength [closed]

I was curious if there was a forumla to find the energy required to reach 1 wavelength in a given substance. (or a vacumn if that's too hard). I am also wondering if this number can tell us anything ...
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1answer
307 views

When to use Heat Diffusivity eqn and when to use Fourier's law to find temperature distribution?

Let's say that there is a circular conical section that has diameter $D=.25x$ without any heat generation and I need to find the temperature distribution. Originially I thought I could use the heat ...
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3answers
220 views

Equation $H(q,p)=E$ is the equation of motion or energy-conservation law?

I do not completely understand, why do we consider Hamilton–Jacobi equation $H(q,p)=E$ as equation of motion, whereas it is looks like energy-conservation law?
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122 views

A terminological question about work and energy

Work is force applied over distance. Is it also reasonable to say that work is (the same thing as) the transfer of energy? When work is done, the equivalent energy is transferred. But if energy is ...
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243 views

Lifetime of battery

If I directly connect two terminals of 3V battery (negative to positive) using copper wire, would it lose all its charge faster compared to another 3V battery that is used to lighten a 1.5V bulb?
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Is the curvature of space around mass independent of gravity?

Is the curvature of space caused by the local density of the energy in that area?Could gravity be a separate phenomenon only arising from the curvature of space? For instance if the density of energy ...
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1answer
751 views

Temperature change effected by electric heater [closed]

A 40-gallon electric water heater has a 10kW heating element. What will the water temperature be after 15 min of heating if the start temp is 50F degrees. There must be an equation. I can't find it ...
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347 views

Simple question about a gas in a box with a moving wall

David Albert is a philosopher of Science at Columbia. His book "Time and Chance" includes this example (p 36). A gas is confined on one side of a box with a removable wall. "Draw the wall out, ...
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210 views

How much energy does lowering an object into a black hole generate?

An object of mass m is slowly lowered into a black hole of mass 1000 m. Is the amount of braking energy larger than $0.6 mc^2$? Now what if, after lowering the mass close to the event horizon, we ...
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1answer
32 views

How much energy should I give into each particle in this equation:

I am trying to recreate the results of an article (membrane simulation) and I have the following line: Both particles have the same soft radius, $U_{rep} (r)/\epsilon = \text{exp}\left\{ -20 ...
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2answers
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Kinetic energy absorbing in order to avoid damages?

is this possible? To absorb kinetic energy and disable inertia force? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnKPbAbJI0w http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_5oseSVUc4
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1answer
156 views

Will a photon emitted from something moving quickly have a shorter wavelength?

If a photon is emitted from a light source moving at any speed, the photon will nonetheless always move at c (assuming it is emitted in a vacuum.) If the speed of a photon's emitter cannot influence ...
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236 views

If humans were able to catch all sun energy reaching the earth for their use, will the climate change?

I guess that energy will be used up and, at the end, will contribute to heat the earth, so I see no big differences... please explain your point of view.
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Proof that Energy Momentum Tensor of Scalar Field Theory satisfies Weak Energy Condition

It's a question on Sean Carroll's Spacetime and Geometry, where we are supposed to prove that the energy momentum tensor of scalar field theory satisfies Weak Energy Condition (WEC). The energy ...
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3answers
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Conservation of Momentum/Energy collision Problem

I'm working on a physics problem in preparation for the MCAT and there's this particular problem that's troubling me. I don't know if it's a bad question or if I'm not understanding some sort of ...
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1answer
213 views

Violation of conservation of energy and potential energy between objects

I would like to clarify my question. I have numbered them to be independent questions For any conservative fields, $\vec{F} = -\nabla U$. Which means the restoring force is opposite to the ...
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3answers
102 views

Certain material heating water in a recipient

I don't know how to resolve a problem, but I don't want the answer since I'm almost going to have it resolved. What the problem says is we have 85 liters of water at 7ºC in an iron pot of 29kg. We ...
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4answers
12k views

Why can't energy be created or destroyed?

My physics instructor told the class, when lecturing about energy, that it can't be created or destroyed. Why is that? Is there a theory or scientific evidence that proves his statement true or ...
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Practical personal aircraft today? [closed]

Is it possible to build, today, a personal aircraft that not use an impracticable amount of fuel for everyday use? What are the physical concepts that could be used to build it?
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How much energy is in a lightning strike?

According to Wikipedia an average lightning has 1TW, the whole world used 16TW in 2006. (I suppose this means the same as 16TWh in one year?) Sometimes the lightning reaches 100kA. This peak last for ...
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270 views

Could someone remind me what this means again? $\nabla U = \pm F$

You know that for a potential function (conservative force/fields) that $\nabla U = \pm \vec{F}$ In math, we don't have that minus sign, we have only the plus one. What does it mean if you get rid ...
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426 views

Spin angular momentum of a system of particles : Is there any energy associated with it?

Consider a system of point particles , where the mass of particle $i$ is $μ_i$ and its position vector is $\vec{r}_i$. Let $\vec{r}_\text{cm}$ is the position vector of the center of mass of the ...