Energy Transformations

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Transformation of Energy

If you wind up the rubber band in a model plane, you transform chemical energy into mechanical, heat and electrical energy. As you turn the propeller, potential energy is stored in the rubber motor of your plane. When you let the plane go, the spinning propeller has rotational kinetic energy. The moving plane and the air being pushed back both have kinetic energy. As the plane gains altitude, kinetic energy is transformed to potential energy. As the plane descends, potential energy is transformed to kinetic energy. Energy leaves the system as heat from friction. In addition, some energy leaves the system as sound energy.

 

Energy

Energy is defined as the ability to do work. If you can measure how much work an object does, or how much heat is exchanged, you can determine the amount of energy that is in a system.  Read this for more information. As with work, energy is also measured in Joules. Energy is not created nor destroyed according to the Law of Conservation of Energy. Energy only changes form. It is transformed from one kind of energy to another. In fact, the energy that makes your body work can be traced back to the sun. Solar energy is transformed to chemical energy in the plants. We get chemical energy from the plants and animals we eat.

 

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