Kinetic, Potential, and the conservation of energy


Energy. Its all around us. Literally. I mean, seriously. Just take a look around you. Energy is to the left of you, where your homeboy is sitting. Its three seats back and one to the right of you, where that cute girl you like is sitting.
Yeah, I saw you checking her out ;)

But the real question here is...
What is energy?

Some will say energy is that feeling when you go to see your favorite artist live and them playing live, just that overall feeling. That.....oomf.

Others will say energy is from an alien or superhero that can make energy beams and blow up stuff.

But lets put it in a scientific meaning...
Energy is one of the many quantitative properties describing a physical system and/or object's state. It can be transformed into so many ways, that I can't even think of them all right now.

Energy can light up your home, power up your car, warms your home, plays our music, gives us pictures on our television. So it does quite a lot, but there is more than just energy of that stature. Let me explain some ways of energy...


What is the conservation of energy? Well, its pretty much a concept of physics based from the conservation of mass and the conservation of momentum.

It states that the current amount of energy remains at a constant and that it remains constant at an isolated system. It also implies that matter can neither be created, nor can it be destroyed. Crazy, huh?

And even though there could be some physical and/ or chemical changes to a body of mass, that said mass will remain constant. So in other words, no matter what happens to it, the body of mass will be fine.


Every single thing (not just here on Earth, but everything) has kinetic energy. Kinetic energy is energy possessed by an object due to its' movement and/or motion.

A better way of explaining it would be to say for example...

On a pedestal, there are two balls on it. One, is a little bouncy ball. And the other, a baseball. You knock both of them down into two different pots of water. The bouncy ball makes a rather small "splash". And then the baseball makes a much bigger "splash".


Note the following...
1. Both of the balls had potential energy (more about that below) as they rested upon the table.
2. By resting on the table, the also had gravitational energy (which is just potential energy, but stored up only in a higher place, which in this case, the pedestal).
3. By moving and falling off said table, both the potential and gravitational energy turned into kinetic energy (and I'll let you guess as to which ball had more kinetic energy)


Have you ever heard the saying "An accident waiting to happen"?
It is a really good way of explaining stored energy "waiting to happen". Its kinda like a bike on top of a hill, or holding a book over your head. Both of which are "waiting to happen"

"But wait!!! Aren't kinetic and potential the same thing?!?!" Not really, to be fair. Potential is stored energy and kinetic is energy in motion. So, pretty much...

Potential: Not quite yet.
Kinetic: Already happening.

So hopefully, I have cleared up some in differences and confusion as to some of the types of energy out there. Now of course, those aren't the only types of energy out there. This is just merely the tip of the iceberg of energy. So just get out there and explore the many types of energy the world has to offer.