energy Transfers and Transformations

Energy cannot be produced or destroyed, yet it deserve to be transferred and transformed. There room a number of different ways power can be changed, together as as soon as potential energy becomes kinetic energy or when one object moves an additional object.

You are watching: How does energy transfer from one object to another


Water cook Pot

There room three varieties of thermal energy transfer: conduction, radiation, and also convection. Convection is a cyclical procedure that just occurs in fluids. Water molecule at the bottom of a heated pot start to relocate faster and then spread out. These excited molecule rise; the cooler, denser water falls. The process then repeats.

Photograph by Liu Kuanxi


This list the logos of program or partners of NG education which have noted or contributed the contents on this page. Leveled by


Energy cannot be developed or destroyed, meaning that the total amount of energy in the cosmos has always been and also will constantly be constant. However, this does not typical that power is immutable; it have the right to change form and also transfer in between objects.A common example of energy transfer the we see in daily life is the transfer of kinetic energy—the energy associated with motion—from one moving object come a stationary object via work. In physics, work-related is a measure of power transfer and also refers to the force applied by an item over a distance. When a golf club is swung and hits a stationary golf ball, few of the club’s kinetic energy transfers come the sphere as the club does “work” ~ above the ball. In an power transfer such as this one, energy moves from one object to another, yet stays in the same form. A kinetic power transfer is simple to observe and understand, yet other necessary transfers space not as easy to visualize.Thermal energy has to perform with the internal power of a system due to its temperature. When a substance is heated, its temperature rises because the molecules it is created of relocate faster and also gain thermal energy through heat transfer. Temperature is provided as a measure up of the degree of “hotness” or “coldness” of an object, and the term warm is provided to refer to thermal power being moved from a hotter mechanism to a cooler one. Thermal power transfers occur in three ways: through conduction, convection, and also radiation.When thermal energy is transferred in between neighboring molecule that are in contact with one another, this is referred to as conduction. If a steel spoon is placed in a pot of cook water, even the end not poignant the water gets an extremely hot. This happens since metal is an efficient conductor, an interpretation that warmth travels with the product with ease. The vibrations of molecules at the finish of the spoon poignant the water spread out throughout the spoon, till all the molecules space vibrating much faster (i.e., the entirety spoon gets hot). Some materials, such together wood and plastic, space not an excellent conductors—heat walk not easily travel with these materials—and are rather known as insulators.Convection just occurs in fluids, such together liquids and gases. When water is boiled top top a stove, the water molecule at the bottom the the pot space closest to the heat source and acquire thermal energy first. They start to move faster and spread out, creating a lower thickness of molecules at the bottom of the pot. These molecules then climb to the peak of the pot and also are replaced at the bottom by cooler, denser water. The procedure repeats, producing a existing of molecules sinking, heating up, rising, cooling down, and also sinking again.The third form of warmth transfer—radiation—is an essential to life on Earth and also is crucial for heating bodies that water. V radiation, a heat source does not have to touch the object gift heated; radiation deserve to transfer heat even through the vacuum of space. Nearly all thermal energy on planet originates indigenous the sun and also radiates to the surface ar of our planet, traveling in the form of electromagnetic waves, such together visible light. Products on earth then absorb these waves to be used for energy or reflect them ago into space.In an power transformation, energy changes form. A sphere sitting at the top of a hill has actually gravitational potential energy, which is an object’s potential to do work because of its position in a gravitational field. Generally speaking, the higher on the hill this round is, the an ext gravitational potential energy it has. Once a pressure pushes it down the hill, the potential energy transforms into kinetic energy. The ball continues losing potential energy and gaining kinetic power until it reaches the bottom the the hill.In a frictionless universe, the sphere would continue rolling forever upon reaching the bottom, because it would have only kinetic energy. Top top Earth, however, the ball stops at the bottom of the hill due to the kinetic energy being transformed into warm by the opposing force of friction. Just similar to energy transfers, power is conserved in transformations.In nature, power transfers and transformations take place constantly, such as in a seaside dune environment.When thermal power radiates native the sun, it heats both the land and ocean, however water has a specific high heat capacity, so the heats increase slower 보다 land. This temperature difference creates a convection current, which then manifests as wind.This wind own kinetic energy, i m sorry it deserve to transfer to seed of sand on the coast by delivering them a quick distance. If the relocating sand hits an obstacle, it stops because of the friction created by the contact and also its kinetic power is then transformed into thermal energy, or heat. Once sufficient sand build up end time, these collisions can produce sand dunes, and also possibly even an entire dune field.These newly developed sand dunes provide a distinct environment for plants and also animals.

See more: What Does Tesoro Mean In English, Tesoro In English

A plant may thrive in these dunes by making use of light power radiated native the sunlight to transform water and carbon dioxide right into chemical energy, i beg your pardon is save in sugar. Once an animal eats the plant, it supplies the energy stored in the sugar to warm its body and also move around, transforming the chemical power into kinetic and also thermal energy.Though it might not always be obvious, energy transfers and also transformations constantly take place all around us and also are what permit life as we understand it to exist.