What You Need to Know About Energy | Science
Energy is an essential part of life. From the food we eat, to the way we move, to the products we produce, to the technology we use, energy makes it all possible. So what do you need to know about energy for that TASC Test Assessing Secondary Completion™? Let’s discuss!
What is Energy?
In the simplest terms, energy is the ability to do work. The amount of energy something or someone has refers to its capacity to cause things to happen, according to LiveScience.com.
Energy is similar to what you need to do work. Work is the force used to move something. For example, if you need to move heavy boxes early in the morning, you should eat a good breakfast (consume energy) so your body can create the energy it needs to do the work.
According to the Boston University Physics department, work and energy are tools to analyze physical situations:
- If a force is applied to an object and causes movement, work is done by the force.
- If a force is applied to an object and the object doesn’t move, no work is done.
- If a force is applied to an object and the object moves in the opposite direction of the force, less work is done (than if the object were to move in the same direction of the force).
Energy and work are determined using scientific formulas, but you need to know what type and form of energy you’re dealing with first.
Types of Energy
There are two main types of energy: kinetic and potential. According to the Physics Classroom,
- Kinetic energy is the energy of motion.
If an object is in motion, it has kinetic energy. An object’s kinetic energy depends on the object’s mass (m) and speed (v). Once these variables are determined, an object’s kinetic energy (KE) can be determined from the following formula:
KE = 0.5 · m · v2
- Potential energy is stored energy.
Depending on an object’s position, it can store energy. Take a bow and arrow, for example. The Physics Classroom notes that a drawn bow has stored energy as a result of its position. When it’s not drawn, there is no energy stored in the bow.
Forms of Potential and Kinetic Energy
- Heat Energy
- Light Energy
- Sound Energy
- Electrical Energy
- Mechanical Energy
- Chemical Energy