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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What is energy in $z \neq 1 $ theories?

In a critical theory with dynamical critical exponent $z \neq 1 $, which amongst frequency, $\omega$, and dispersion, $E(\vec{k})$, may be referred to as ''energy''? I'm confused about this since in ...
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Conceptually, what is negative work?

I'm having some trouble understanding the concept of negative work. For example, my book says that if I lower a box to the ground, the box does positive work on my hands and my hands do negative work ...
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2answers
3k views

Collision between a photon and an electron

Looking through this AP Physics question, I was struck by how the 'collision' between a photon and electron looks so much like a macroscopic collision. Is this even physically possible? Look at the ...
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0answers
489 views

How does the volume change affect an adiabatic process?

A gas consisting of rigid diatomic molecules was initially under standard conditions. Then the gas was compressed adiabatically, 5 times the original volume. Find the mean KE of rotating molecules in ...
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1answer
636 views

A Calorimetry Problem

I have a question in calorimetry from an old competitive exam. The question is: The temperature of $100$ grams of water is to be raised from $24 ^\circ$C to $90 ^\circ$C by adding steam to it. ...
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1answer
249 views

Hamiltonian in 2-dimensions? [closed]

I am trying to construct a Hamiltonian for a system in 2 dimensions using Matlab. I am not sure how this Hamiltonian will look like in matrix form. If somebody can help me visualize this matrix that ...
0
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1answer
118 views

How do we know that time and distance are not discrete?

I know that it is believed that energy is discrete, in that it travels in quanta. I was wondering if there is any evidence which either proves or disproves something similar with both time and ...
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2answers
265 views

Why aren't the energies of two systems in thermal equilibrium fixed?

In the derivation of the Boltzmann distribution they consider a system $A$, enclosed by a diathermal wall in a heat reservoir $R$. Then they calculate the probability that the system $A$ is in an ...
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5answers
6k views

Why doesn't light kill me?

Why does each individual photon have such a low amount of energy? I am hit by photons all day and I find it amazing that I am not vaporized. Am I simply too physically big for the photons to harm me ...
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2answers
2k views

How can I explicit the energy dependence of the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution?

I'm having a bit of a problem figuring out the energy dependent Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution. According to my book (Ashcroft & Mermin) they write the velocity dependent distribution as: $${{f}...
2
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2answers
92 views

What is the derivation for the exponential energy relation and where does it apply?

Very often when people state a relaxation time $\tau_\text{kin-kin}, \tau_\text{rot-kin}$,, etc. they think of a context where the energy relaxation goes as $\propto\text e^{-t/\tau}$. Related is an ...
5
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1answer
341 views

First law of thermodynamics?

The first law says that the change in internal energy is equal to the work done on the system (W) minus the work done by the system (Q). However, can $Q$ be any kind of work, such as mechanical work? ...
6
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1answer
341 views

Why do wind power plants have just 3 blades? [duplicate]

Why do wind power plants have just 3 blades? It seems that adding more blades would increase the area that interacts with the wind and gather more energy. (Image from Wikipedia.)
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1answer
1k views

Do electrons need specific energies to excite electrons

Photons need specific energy levels, equal to the difference between two energy levels to excite an electron in an atom. Is this the same case with electrons that collide with atoms?
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5answers
6k views

Why is potential energy negative when orbiting in a gravitational field?

I had to do a problem, and part of it was to find the mechanical energy of satellite orbiting around mars, and I had all of the information I needed. I thought the total mechanical energy would be the ...
2
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5answers
1k views

The Preference for Low Energy States

The idea that systems will achieve the lowest energy state they can because they are more "stable" is clear enough. My question is, what causes this tendency? I've researched the question and been ...
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2answers
439 views

Negative potential energy of gravity

Does the negative potential energy in the gravitational field have to be considered in calculating the total mass of the system in question (because of $E=mc^2$)? If so it seems to me that the ...
0
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4answers
14k views

How do you determine the heat transfer from a P-V diagram?

I doubt this question has been addressed properly before, but if there are similar answers, do direct them to me. I am currently studying the First Law of Thermodynamics, which includes the p-V ...
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1answer
430 views

Why doesn't intensity of light affect the emission of electrons?

So electrons of specific atoms have a minimum amount of energy needed to escape the atom, called the work function, W. Now let's say that you emit a certain frequency of light, and $hf<W$. However, ...
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2answers
1k views

What happens to the energy not absorbed by a radio?

If a radio tunes to a specific frequency, where does the excess energy go? If one continues to hit the resonant frequency, shouldn't the wire begin to melt at some point from too much energy?
5
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1answer
6k views

Why does compressing a piston increase the internal energy?

When we compress a piston, its total internal energy increases, however I don't understand why. As the piston compresses, the temperature should change, as the total energy density increases. As a ...
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3answers
2k views

What does it mean if a body has kinetic energy?

What does it mean if a body has kinetic energy? Does it mean that the momentum vectors of each particle of that body has the same direction? What about angular momentum?
2
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0answers
29 views

Energy needed to raise energy level of an atom? [duplicate]

Suppose I have an atom at rest which is at energy level $E_i$. Would it be possible to raise it to the next higher level $E_{i+1}$ by shooting a photon of energy $E_{i+1}-E_i$ at it? I ask because ...
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1answer
192 views

What lifting mechanism is likely to have the best energy recovery ratio? [closed]

Suppose I was designing an apparatus which needed to lift 250kg 5cm high, hold it there for a few seconds, and then lower the object back to the original height. Such a process would need to be ...
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1answer
604 views

Why are electrons in one atom attracted to negative electrons in another atom? [closed]

Why or for what purpose is this attraction purposeful or what is the reasoning behind why these energy particles are drawn to each other? Any proven results, or proposed theories of your own, or ...
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2answers
4k views

How does the energy in a standing wave travel beyond a node?

In a standing wave, how does energy travel past a node? It should just get reflected. Assume the case of first overtone and you strike the string at a place. How will energy distribute itself? If it ...
0
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1answer
93 views

Pendulum system: how is derived the output as Energy?

Good day to everyone, I want to understand in which way the "Energy equation" is been implemented to this pendulum system. $x_1(t)$: The angular position of the mass $x_2(t)$: The angular velocity ...
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1answer
274 views

Maximum separation when 2 unlike charges shot apart

I want to compute the maximum separation when 2 unlike charges are shot apart from each other ...
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3answers
3k views

How is it possible to equate the internal energy at constant volume with the internal energy of an adiabatic process?

I hope my question makes sense. My problem is that, I have read through numerous textbooks that $$nCdT = -PdV$$ (where $NC$ is constant volume) when deriving the relationship between $T$ and $V$ for ...
3
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5answers
859 views

Integrating factor $1/T$ in 2nd Law of Thermodynamics

How would you prove that $1/T$ is the most suitable integrating factor to transform $\delta Q$ to an exact differential in the second law of thermodynamics: $$dS = \frac{\delta Q}{T}$$ Where $dS$ is ...
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2answers
1k views

Why can't Humans run any faster?

If you wanted to at least semi-realistically model the key components of Human running, what are the factors that determine the top running speed of an individual? The primary things to consider would ...
0
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3answers
833 views

Why doesn't a stationary electron lose energy by radiating electric field (as per coulomb's law)?

If an electron in a universe constantly generates an electric field why does it not get annihilated ? I am confused because I read that an accelerating charge radiates and loses energy. So, why won't ...
0
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1answer
1k views

Composition of solar spectrum

I read some where that there are three types of UV and infrared rays namely UV-A, UV-B, UV-C and near infrared, mid infrared and far infrared. Which is the most abundant among the the three in ...
2
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1answer
219 views

Total energy is extremal for the static solutions of equation of motions

In physics total energy is extremal for the static solutions of equation of motions. Can anyone explain this sentence to me?
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1answer
309 views

Energy stored in fields

How to intuitively think of energy stored in a magnetic/electric field? Kindly answer in a bit simple terms without referring to mathematics.
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1answer
135 views

Energy Functional

I am a graduate student in pure mathematics, during my study on Ricci Flow I faced some functional known as energy functional. For example Einstein-Hilbert functional is called an energy functional, ...
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1answer
242 views

Basic energy calculation for N identical spin system

We have a system that has N identical spins $n_i$, and each spin can be in state 1 or 0. The overall energy for the system is $\epsilon\sum_{i=1}^{N}n_i$. My understanding: There is only one ...
2
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1answer
667 views

Fundamental properties of motion

The first paragraph of the Wikipedia article on the angular momentum operator states that In both classical and quantum mechanical systems, angular momentum (together with linear momentum and ...
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0answers
430 views

How to convert Richter magnitude scale to approximate TNT?

I know the Richter magnitude scale is often used for measuring the strength of earthquakes. At the same time, explosive/destructive releases of energy are often quoted in equivalent amounts of TNT. Is ...
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1answer
343 views

What energy changes take place when you operate a jet-ski?

What energy changes take place when you operate a jet-ski?
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10answers
11k views

What makes running so much less energy-efficient than bicycling?

Most people can ride 10 km on their bike. However, running 10 km is a lot harder to do. Why? According to the law of conservation of energy, bicycling should be more intensive because you have to ...
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1answer
106 views

Determine KE of electron given momentum & mass [closed]

Some info: wavelength of electron: $2.78 \times 10^{-10}$ momentum of electron: $2.38 \times 10^{-24}$ Determine KE of electron. In a provided hint: $KE = \frac{p^2}{2m}$. So I have: $$KE = \...
2
votes
1answer
577 views

Simple harmonic oscillator system and changes in its total energy

Suppose I have a body of mass $M$ connected to a spring (which is connected to a vertical wall) with a stiffness coefficient of $k$ on some frictionless surface. The body oscillates from point $C$ to ...
0
votes
4answers
214 views

Is it possible to “add cold” or to “add heat” to systems?

Amanda just poured herself a cup of hot coffee to get her day started. She took her first sip and nearly burned her tongue. Since she didn't have much time to sit and wait for it to cool down, ...
0
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1answer
287 views

Liquid oxygen how do they use it as fuel?

Rockets are said to be using liquid oxygen as fuel. How do they use liquid oxygen since it's just oxygen, it only helps in the combustion process. How can it be a fuel on its own?
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2answers
450 views

Energy of particle in electric field

I'm taking a physics class and the professor teaches us really basic things in lecture and then gives homework way beyond what he taught in lecture. Obviously I need to find some resource other than ...
4
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1answer
453 views

Mass-energy equivalence and Newton's Second Law of motion

According to Einstein's Mass-energy equivalence, $ E = mc^2$ OR $ m = \frac E{c^2}$..... (1) and According to Newton's Second Law of motion, $ F = ma$ OR $m = \frac Fa$ ..... (2) If we compare eq. ...
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0answers
65 views

Time reversed laser

Recently, I read an article on time reversed laser. I don't know why they call it a time reversed. I have a doubt that why they use two laser in the device. And what is an anti-laser? The device ...
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3answers
148 views

Universe to energy

Would it violate any known laws of physics to construct a universe containing no mass, only energy?
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2answers
156 views

Does performing a measurement on a system change its internal energy?

I'm studying Quantum Mechanics in my spare time from a general point of view (no technical details) so some fundamental question came into my mind: How is it possible to detect a single photon ...