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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How does a complex wavefunction “hold” energy?

Feynmann Lectures Vol 3 Ch 8 Sec 6 describes how an ammonia molecule can have two definite energy states. If the amplitudes of the base states are $ C_1(t) ...
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How much energy needed to push a volume of water?

I am trying to solve a situation, where I'd like to know how much energy would be needed to push a mass of water out of a container. Here's an image to help understand: The water tank has a height ...
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efficiency of electric cars vs gas? [closed]

I have been listening to my friends brag about electric cars and I can't seem to convince them that electricity is not some magic force that comes out of the wall outlet. It must be produced ...
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Total energy of a body following circular motion

I learned that when a body rotates, its total energy is, $$energy=\left(\frac12\right)mv^2 + \left(\frac12\right)I\omega^2 $$ However, if an astronomical object is orbiting around the earth, is ...
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What do we mean when we talk about Gibbs Free Energy?

Before I start, I'm aware that this question may be better suited on the Chemistry or Biology site, but it's my belief that physicists are more likely to have a clear understanding on what certain ...
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409 views

Finding internal energy using equation of state

I have an equation of state as a function of $p$ (pressure), $T$ (temperature) and $V$ (volume) for a real gas and need to find an expression for the internal energy $U$. I know this is given by the ...
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51 views

How to calculate how many can a stick hold?

I got two boxes, and one stick, two boxes are high enough for a human body. I put one stick between two boxes, like this: The boxes are yellow, and the stick is brown. So, I would like to put ...
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2answers
143 views

Creating Energy!

I have this doubt in my mind for a long time, see if we rotate a fan in space: it would keep on rotating forever and would never stop. Due to no air friction present in space. I could never really ...
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Practice AP Physics B Exam Question regarding Momentum

I am trying to review momentum for the AP exam coming up. I will be taking the AP Physics C exam for Mechanics, but I was just practicing on any free response questions I could find and I came across ...
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1answer
88 views

Relativistic fomulae for energy and momentum?

I know that the relativistic formulae for energy and momentum are: $E = \gamma mc^2$ and $\textbf{p} = \gamma m\textbf{v}$; Can we derive these formulae? If yes, where from?
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Different formulas for calculating power [duplicate]

$P=IV$, $P=I^2R$, $P=\frac{V^2}{R}$, what are the distinctions between these equations? How do you know which equation to use when?
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2answers
192 views

electrical potential energy stored in vacumm for a single point charge?

I have come to know the electrostatic potential energy in vacuum is given by $${\frac{1}{2}} \epsilon_0\int d^3x {E^2} $$ and this energy is due to the mutual electrostatic coulomb potential energy. ...
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Electric Power $P$

In my textbook there are 2 formulas for electric power: $$\begin{array}{cccr} P &=& E/t &\hspace{10pt} (1) \\ P &=& VI. &\hspace{10pt} (2) \end{array}$$ What is the ...
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1answer
241 views

What happens to gas molecules after ionization?

I know that gas molecules conduct electricity after they get ionized but what will happen if we keep increasing the voltage even after ionization? Will it explode? If it will then how much energy ...
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1answer
151 views

Can walking provide electrical energy?

This is more of a theoretical question, but is it possible to convert the energy you use to walk into electrical energy to say, power a light bulb?
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1answer
63 views

Can I applicate the law of action and reaction on energy?

It is clear that if you push on some object, there is reaction of the same force. But is it the same energy? Thanks a lot.
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2answers
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Molecules and electrons energy types

What are the types of energy that an atom or a molecule could have? For example they have kinetic energy, could they also have other types?
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1answer
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The relationship between the energy and amplitude of a wave? Derivation?

From multiple online sources I read that $$E \propto A^2$$ but when I mentioned this in class, my teacher told me I was wrong and that it was directly proportional to amplitude instead. As far as I ...
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1answer
143 views

Composition of kinetic energy

As kinetic energy is the "energy of motion", it cannot exist without matter. However, the energy in an E/M wave can. I understand that E/M waves have been described in structure as electrical and ...
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2answers
703 views

Is the potential energy of molecules related to its temperature? [duplicate]

Do ideal gases have a certain potential energy at a certain temperature?
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0answers
78 views

Why do electrons and protons attract each other? [duplicate]

In the end, are they not a condensed form of energy? I want the 'Why' to go as far as it takes. Where it ends? What are the constituents of the electron and proton, that make them attract each ...
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1answer
605 views

Do ideal gases at zero Kelvin have potential energy?

Do ideal gases at zero Kelvin have potential energy?
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1answer
157 views

Classical disintegration of particles, Landau-Lifshitz series on Physics

i read Landau's book recently. In this book p.43 Landau says from (16.1) (16.2) can be write down $T_10$= $p_0^2$/2$m_1$=($M-m_1$)($E_i-E_1i-E_i'$)/$M$ For me, it is hard to understand the factor ...
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1answer
182 views

Where does energy in a field come from?

Let us consider for example Earth's gravitational field. If we put a ball somewhere in this field, the ball starts to accelerate due to the gravitational force exerted on it. I understand the ...
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2answers
940 views

Why aren't solar panels efficient?

Why can't solar panels produce 1 Kw per 1 square meter? This is the energy of the Sun's radiation per square meter on Earth but solar panels don't come close. Why can't we trap all that energy? ...
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1answer
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Resource(s) for developing a good understanding of surface tension?

I have read through several junior undergraduate level explanations of surface tension. Here is a typical presentation at that level: Molecules at the surface of a fluid experience approximately ...
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Melting ice in a tray in space shuttle

We have an ice cube in a tray in a space shuttle. As the ice cube melts, the centre of mass shifts downward, so the tray should move downward to maintain the position of the centre of mass. Now, some ...
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1answer
71 views

What becomes of the massive clouds expelled from Quasars?

What becomes of the massive clouds expelled from Quasar jets? Do they simply disperse into intergalactic diffuse clouds? Or do they on occasion have enough gravity to hold together and or collapse? If ...
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1answer
2k views

Why doesn't the potential energy of any object equal 0

Consider a particle on the ground. This particle is raised by a force of magnitude $mg$ to a height $h$ above the ground. At this point, the work done on the particle by the force is $mgh$, which is ...
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2answers
180 views

The velocity of light changes from one medium to another, but does its energy change?

Does energy of light change when a light travels from a medium to another of different optical density?
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3answers
2k views

Where is the energy lost in a spring?

Thinking about springs, and their extensions, I recently came to a confusion which I hope this wonderful community can help me solve. The question is this. When the block is initially attached to ...
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3answers
848 views

Would sea water moderate a nuclear submarine meltdown?

My son asked me: If nuclear submarines get sunk or blown up, what is to stop them going into nuclear meltdown? I thought about it and came to the conclusion that because they're in the sea the ...
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1answer
793 views

Where does an object get kinetic energy?

Where does an object "obtain" kinetic energy? I understand that an object often gets kinetic energy from another object. Where does the first object get the energy?
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1answer
3k views

Potential energy of the human body if all its atoms were split

I am working on a sci-fi story in which a character has control over matter on the atomic level (think Dr. Manhattan from Watchmen). In thinking up potential tragedies for this character I thought, ...
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What is the nature of energy? [duplicate]

In science fiction adventures, spacecraft are sometime equipped with "energy beams", i.e. devices that can project pure energy unassociated with matter. Is this possible? Is energy a "thing" in the ...
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Is heat energy from electronics wasted in the winter? [duplicate]

In the winter, are not all electronics heating the house - thus no energy is wasted? Considering the energy I'm paying for: If I leave my computer running while I'm out, how much energy is actually ...
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How to derive energy expressions thinking of it as a conserved quantity only?

By now I understand that "energy is a conserved quantity" and that's all we need to know. Then, the idea of work comes as the change in kinectic energy of a system and we realise that having energy is ...
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527 views

Which electron gets which energy level?

Electrons sit in different energy levels of an atom, the farther the higher energy is. Every electrons have the same structure, they can gain energy from environment, electrons which gained energy ...
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2answers
148 views

How come weight doesn't affect the rebound height on a net?

According to my text book two unequal masses, (80kg and 50kg) fall on a net and the work done by that net is calculated by $\frac{1}{2}kx^2$. This work is then transformed into kinetic energy for both ...
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How does water falling down a waterfall gain energy?

I'm kind of a noob in the physics area. But I know that energy cannot be created, it can only be transferred. So how and what "type" of energy does water get when free-falling?
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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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592 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. ...
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1answer
274 views

Rigid body problem

I have some doubts about the next excercise: A bar of length $2a$ and mass $m$ moves freely with both of its extremes on a ring of radius $\sqrt2a$. The ring can rotate freely in a certain ...
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Derivation of rest energy in Landau & Lifshitz

In Landau & Lifshitz The Classical Theory Of Fields there's a statement: $$\mathscr E=\frac{mc^2}{\sqrt{1-\frac{v^2}{c^2}}}\tag{9.4}$$ This very important formula shows, in particular, that ...
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1answer
558 views

Is it true that a Space Shuttle launch is powerful like an “average” nuclear explosion?

Kind of an odd question here. First let's define what an "average" nuclear explosion is, because that's quite a controversial term - "average". Considering that the peak of nuclear tests was at the ...
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1answer
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What is the maximum theoretical efficiency of heat to electricity conversion?

I know that heat engines (heat to kinetic) are limited by Carnot cycle and that kinetic energy to electric energy conversion via standard generator reaches over 90%. However I would like to know ...
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How do electrons get the energy to jump from one orbital to the next when in stationary orbits the electron does not radiate energy

My Question is how do electrons get energy/lose energy to jump up or down an orbital as in a stationary orbit they do not gain energy and their energy is finite?
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Why is electric potential 0 in this case?

On a test, we had a question where there are 4 point charges at the vertices of a square. The 2 charges at the upper vertices have charges of +q and the 2 charges ...
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Gauge Invariance of the Hamiltonian of the electromagnetic field

The Hamiltonian for an electron of mass $m$ and charge $e$ in an exterior electromagnetic field is $$H=\frac{1}{2m}(p-(e/c)A)^2+e\varphi.$$ The corresponding (via canonical quantization) quantum ...
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How can one calculate the distance a particular sound will travel?

What do you need and how to calculate a distance traveled by sound? For example if you hit a bell with a specific amount of power how far will it travel?